Saturday, 6 August 2022

snippets from our holiday












August took me by surprise. I forgot my July ...ing post but it will be the end of August in no time. 

We are back from Switzerland, where we were treated like royalty by my brother and sister in law. Sam and Annie meanwhile stayed at my mothers and were also treated like royalty. We met up in Spiez one sunny afternoon and enjoyed some all family time. The male offspring and I went for a refreshing swim in Lake Thun. I thought it was wonderful to swim laps in the cool mountain lake water and the youngsters loved the floating island. Yes, proper 50m lap swimming in a lake, fabulous. We ended the day with a dinner right by the lake. 

We spent a lot of time in the public outdoor pool near my brother's home. James and Alistair loved the diving boards, the waterslide and and the geyser pool. I swam laps in the 50 metre pool and listened to my audiobook on a towel on the shady grass. Richard and James went swimming down the Rhine one morning, which they enjoyed. Swiss rivers are good for swimming and generally safe with easy access and exit points. The Rhine is slow flowing in Basel and very low just now and I didn't worry too much about James, who had no previous river swimming experience. Richard also swam in the Aare in Bern while teaching on a course. The Aare is much faster flowing and much colder, too. I used to go for swims down the Aare while living in Bern. Fond memories etc 

Richard and I went to a retirement party for a former colleague of mine we both collaborated with. This was in Bern and we were glad that my mum hosted James and Alistair for the afternoon/evening. Sam helped with that but Annie came with us. It was nice to catch up with old friends I worked with a long tie ago. I caught up with my now retired PhD supervisor (whose own retirement party I missed unfortunately). He was a most amazing supervisor whose gift for teaching has influenced my own teaching greatly. I know it is silly but I was desperate to tell him about my own achievements because without his support I would not have completed my PhD. I was of course unable to blow my own trumpet but Annie jumped right in saying "did you know my mum....". 

We spent an afternoon in the Jura mountains, the lesser know mountain chain in Switzerland. Less impressive in height but just as beautiful. We took a cable car up the hill, where we found walking trails outdoor activities and restaurant. Richard, James and Alistair got kitted up for a tree climbing adventure. If you are familiar with Go Ape, it was something similar but with a bigger variety of climbs and slides etc. The photo shows them on the training platform, to show the staff they were able to use the equipment safely. Meanwhile, my brother and sister in law, and their cute puppy and I went for a walk. Then we enjoyed cold drinks on the terrace of the restaurant. It was hot. It was also Swiss National Day, which we celebrated with a tasty BBQ later. 

It was hot all the time we were in Switzerland, high twenties and low thirties. I love the heat and miss it now that we are back in Glasgow, where temperatures are much lower. 

My favourite white t-shirt returned from holiday with sun block stains that looked very much like old sweat stains. I decided to soak it in diluted bleach. Chemistry is a wondrous thing because the stains turned a bright pink instantly and the t-shirt looked like a tie-dye job gone horribly wrong. Two options remained - dye it pink/red to cover the stains or try Rit colour remover. I ordered a bottle of the latter and while I was browsing the Rit dye online shop I also discovered dyes suitable for synthetics and I ordered a shade of blue to freshen up my swimsuit, which I had for about 8 years. Meanwhile and unnoticed by me, the t-shirt was drying on the line in the sun and some more chemistry was happening. When I took the laundry off the line, the t-shirt was once more pure white. I wish I had paid more attention in my chemistry courses at university. I'll be able to use the colour remover another time.

Now, all the laundry is done and dinner is nearly ready. It is a vegetable frittata, which I love very much. Thanks for visiting 😊

17 comments:

  1. Those photos are a fabulous backdrop to your holiday narrative. I'm glad Annie decided to blow your trumpet for you 😊. I love the sun but once the temp starts to climb beyond 25 C I'm starting to struggle, we were all terrible during the two day heat wave, it made all our existing medical conditions ten times worse ðŸĪŠ. I guess you'll be squeezing in every last bit of summer before the boys return to school in a few weeks, enjoy every moment x

    ReplyDelete
  2. What a fantastic holiday. Good old Annie; she must be very proud of her mum! I envy you all the wild swimming and am very impressed that your swimsuit has lasted for 8 years! Mine don't last nearly that long, maybe it's all the chlorine? Sun-cream stains on white T-shirts are horrid; at least I know what to do now. :O) xx

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sounds like the perfect holiday for you all. Well done on all that swimming although I’m sure the temperatures were a little chilly. Sea temps here now reached 19°. Intriguing about the effect of the sun. Such a good bleaching agent. I’ll be intrigued to know how your swimming costume turns out. Bet it was great to catch up with old respected colleagues. They’re the best. B x

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lovely pictures from your trip. You certainly packed lots in and it sounds like everyone had a whale of a time. How great to have had the chance to reconnect with your dissertation supervisor and for Annie to blow that trumpet. Enjoy the rest of the holidays.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sounds like a perfect holiday, Christina. How lovely to be able to catch up with family in such a beautiful location. I’ve only ever passed through Switzerland and would love to visit. My nephew lives and works in Verbier now so have a rough plan to visit him some time along with his mother and explore.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Seem to be anonymous again - it’s Doris! Xx

    ReplyDelete
  7. I loved reading this - thank you for sharing it
    Alison in Wales x

    ReplyDelete
  8. Enjoyed seeing some photos and reading about your family summer holiday, Christina. It must have been wonderful to have all of your family, including your mother and brother, share in this adventure. Good for your daughter on trumpeting your accomplishments to your former professor. She is obviously proud of them and you.

    ReplyDelete
  9. That seems like a most wonderful and varied vacation.

    ReplyDelete
  10. It sounds like you have all had a wonderful holiday, some great adventures, your wild swimming sounds amazing. I hear you on July I am not sure where it went either..... Love your description of what happened to your t-shirt! Chemistry is completely baffling to me much to the disgust of my father who did a Chemistry degree and worked with chemicals his entire working life.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh my Christina, I was swimming in lake Thun two weeks ago!! So glad you had a good time and had time with family and friends. Switzerland is my most favourite place. xx

    ReplyDelete
  12. Ha ha your tee shirt and the sun, it also takes out tomato stains! Looks like am amazing holiday.

    ReplyDelete
  13. What a fabulous holiday Christina. So good to be able to spend time with family and friends you don't see often. The t shirt episode made me smile. Chemistry was my absolute worst subject at school. How I managed to have a son who gets a first in chemistry at university I will never know. It certainly wasn't from my genes :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Your trip sounds amazing, so much to see and explore with family and friends near. I am so glad you had a wonderful time you deserved every minute of it.

    ReplyDelete
  15. It sounds like you all enjoyed a wonderful holiday. I'm sure I read somewhere that eucalyptus oil is good at getting rid of sunblock stains. Xx

    ReplyDelete
  16. Wow, what a fantastic holiday, it sounds absolutely brilliant. And lovely to combine it with seeing family. I'm glad you had such a good time. CJ xx

    ReplyDelete
  17. wow, it looks like you have had a great holiday.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I love to hear from you, I really do. I sometimes reply by email but I am not all that reliable... Christina xx