The beautiful thing about having friends visit (in addition to some great conversation, shared meals, drinks on the Rhine and some much needed girl time) is that when you take them to a place you have frequented for years, you tend to see your old stomping ground with fresh eyes.  That is exactly what happened when I recently had the delightful privilege of taking some old colleagues and more importantly dear friends to Grindelwald, Switzerland.

Their delight in the location (snow covered peaks of the Eiger, Jungfrau and Mönch) was contagious and I must admit, made me realize (not that I had ever truly forgotten) how fortunate we are to live in such a tremendously gorgeous country.  Their oohs and aahs were much appreciated and I found myself rolling in their delight as the mountains grew in size and we approached the touristy village of Grindelwald to stay once again at Berghaus Bort.

They were the perfect guests, absorbing each moment, breathing in the fresh alpine air, sipping hot tea under the stars and enjoying the uphill hikes (a great hike can be made from Bort to Bachalpsee 5 hours round trip) with my baby in tow.  Despite the heavy cloud cover and cold temperatures, we enjoyed the passing views.  We never did make it to our final destination of the all-inspiring Bachalpsee, but there was something healing in those mountains, a special bond was created between three friends that time had separated.  The mountains have a way of bringing people together, making us feel small, yet somehow longing to grasp and make the most of this grand life.

And this story wouldn’t be complete without thanking the Alpine farmers for still believing that people can be honest.  Along our hike from Bort to First we came across a small dairy where farmers had placed a refrigerator offering passerby’s fresh cheese.  With the simple placement of your money in the drop box, the cheese was yours.  I am certain that somehow that cheese tasted all the better with the belief that humans are honest and still quite capable of doing the right thing.

So, thank you sweet friends for taking the long trip to Switzerland.  We hope you carry a piece of charming Basel (remember the sweet little ferry ride across the Rhine as the sun was setting, squawking like birds in the foot bath, sipping the local Basler beer under the Münster and placing our feet on the streets of this fine, little city.)  Your visit left impressionable memories and next time I venture into the Alps, I will carry you both with me.

Time of Year:  July
Duration:  Over Night Trip
Where We Stayed:  Berghaus Bort (sensing a theme?)
Eats and Treats:  Alpine Cheese
Child Friendly? Yes!
Likes:  Views, hikes, hotel, wild flowers
Dislikes:  Not being able to see Bachalpsee due to dense cloud cover
Would we return?  Yes – again, and again!

Bort Slideshow


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