July and August 2017
Highlight #3: Cows
Cows! Cows rule the mountains in Switzerland.
I cross a gate on a slanted incline to see a cow on the trail. And another behind her. And then four more and two babies behind them. There is no way around. They are on the trail with no sign of getting off. Ugh! I mean, cows are generally peaceful creatures but they are BIG and I'd rather not be too close to them. I continue to search for a walk around as they all stare at me, chewing flowers. I talk to them, saying that I just want to walk by and what's the best way to do that? That I'm vegan and I'm on their side. Alas, the only way is right past them. So I muster up all my courage and walk past. A few of them groan and one doesn't let me pass but walks ahead for a second. Then steps off the trail.
I'd been holding my breath the whole time and finally release it. Cows don't give a f*@#.
Highlight #4: SUN!
When you've been hiking in the Alps for 5 days and you haven't seen any mountains except the one under your feet and then the clouds break... WOW! They were there the whole time, just silently being majestic behind the clouds with no one seeing them.
I'm hiking again by 6 am, ready to climb the next pass and feeling very pleased with my decision not to take the cable car up. There's always a cable car in Switzerland, I'm starting to realize. Always the decision: to hike or to ride? Luckily I'm a morning person and the cable cars usually don't start running until late (9 am!). So hiking it is.
The weather is finally better today and I'm feeling strong. Climbing mountains is fun! I enjoy myself all the way up, feeling like my hiker self again. I even stop for my traditional mid-morning granola and mocha break.
At the top of the pass there is a cable car station but also a restaurant with free wifi and coffee! That's exciting for a while so I'm extra caffeinated when I leave. Then it's just a walk down and across some ridges and cow fields. After a while I stop for lunch and dry out my things.
It's super hot and humid. Also crowded. Also cow poop everywhere. So even though the sun is out today, the afternoon wares on me. By the time 3 pm comes, I'm exhausted and dehydrated and hungry. So what do I do? I take the cable car!
Down down down with spoon-fulls of peanut butter in my mouth. No shame.
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