Saturday, July 16th ~ Appenzell, Switzerland
Yesterday we departed Zürich and made our way here to the small Alpine village of Appenzell. It is right out of storybook land. Lush green hillsides dotted with Swiss cows or the occasional goat, family homes with flower boxes beneath each window loaded with brightly colored flowers and an attached barn with shuttered windows painted contrasting shades.
Appenzell is small, quaint, charming, expensive (as is all of Switzerland), clean and sits on top of rolling hills with higher mountains surrounding the area. The town fills up during the day, but by 6:00 only a few stragglers remain.
There are several churches to provide a spiritual home for the 6,000 residents. The largest is St. Mauritius.
From the outside, it appears deceptively plain, but what a very pleasant surprise awaited us when we walked through the doors!
The graveyard right next to the church was equally interesting. First of all the setting is “to die for” and quite lovely for an eternal resting place. The plots are very small, but each one is individually “landscaped” with a unique design. Some of the headstones are stained glass.
This group of young men found an interesting way to enjoy one of the fountains.
We ate at Gass 17, which was one of the top rated restaurant in town. It was mid afternoon, so only the light menu was available, but it not only turned out to be plenty, but also healthy and delicious. We chose the soup of the day which was a cream of celery, plus the large portion of the “four salads” to share.
Our hotel was centrally located and about a five-minute walk from the train station. They did a courtesy upgrade for us to a larger room with a sitting area which gives the feel of a junior suite. The room was clean, plenty of hot water and the water pressure was strong enough to “strip the paint off of a car” (Tim’s description this morning). Breakfast was good. They cooked omelets to order. One of the fresh fruit offerings was stewed rhubarb which had just the right sweet/tart ratio. The hotel staff was friendly and helped us plan our day trip to Santis mountain.
Overnight: Romantik Hotel Santis
GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful that Switzerland is neutral. Between the terrorist attack a couple of days ago in Nice, France and the attempted Coup in Turkey, it can be unnerving being out of our own element. My heart goes out to all those who have been affected by the upheaval and brutal acts of terror. I continue to pray that we, as a people, can find the love and compassion for our fellow beings to bring this madness to a stop.