We had a few things on our mind as we left Germany to make our way to Switzerland. First of all this was our first EU border crossing ever and secondly we knew we had to get Switzerland’s version of an EZ Pass as we entered the country to drive on the A-routes and were focused on that. We crossed into Austria and the only way we knew we were there was seeing the sign on the side of the road, just like when you cross into new states in the US.
We stopped in an Austrian McDonalds for the bathrooms and McCafe. This was a two level McDonalds and one of the biggest McDonalds I have seen. While we were getting our coffee the friendly McCafe barista was so excited to hear we were from Florida – she wanted to know all about Disney.
Before we knew it we were in line to cross into Switzerland, which has more of a border, but no formal immigration. We didn’t get any stamps in our passport – in fact they didn’t even look at our passports. We did find out where to park to get our toll sticker.
We arrived in Zurich and found our way to our hotel. Again, there was no parking, so my husband sat in the car in the street while I ran in to check in. I checked in and we had booked one of the five (yes five) parking spots the hotel has available. I was told we were in spot one and the garage door was going up now and would be up for five minutes. I ran out and saw there was a car in spot one. At this time I should tell you I am doing all of this running in and out on a flight of five steps on a decline. I spun around to run back in the hotel and missed the first step and wiped out. 100% wipe out, not graceful, not funny, just a flat out wipe out on the landing. I popped up quickly and ran in to explain a car was in spot one. They then assigned us spot three, and the five minute clock was running. I ran out to the car. At this point in time the pain is setting in. My knees hurt, my hand really hurts, and my elbows are both in pain. I am tearing up at the car, and my clueless husband who didn’t see any of this wants to know what’s wrong, thinking there is a problem with our reservation. I quickly say I wiped out but more importantly he has to get in the parking spot in less than four minutes by now.
He looks at the shortest and narrowest garage spot ever and says we can’t get in there. I tell him we have to and the clock is running and I am in pain. He gets the car in and I hop out to get the bags out before the garage door goes down. My husband goes to open the driver side door to get out and he can’t get out! Now he gets creative and climbs across the passenger seat to get out on the passenger side. The problem – he went headfirst and pops his head out and asks how to get out now. I tell him to turn around and go feet first. After a lot of maneuvering he gets out. All the while I am laughing and crying at the same time. The tears are from both pain and laughter. We get out of the garage finally (the door did close but we found the button to open it) and into the room.
Once in the room it was time for me to cry and to check out the injuries. My knees and left hand were scrapped up. What really hurt was my left elbow. We decided in our expert opinions nothing was broken and set off to explore Zurich.
It was a drizzly day, but we still did our city walk. We shopped on Bahnhofstrasse, which is like NYC’s 5th Avenue. We also found a chocolate shop giving out free samples! We headed to the Fraumunster to see the Marc Chagall windows. This is series of five stained glass panels in Red, Yellow, Green, and Blue. Each window has a specific focus. We read the story of each window and took some time to sit in the quiet church to appreciate the stories and workmanship of the windows. Sadly, you can’t take pictures of them, but you can buy a postcard!
On the way back to our hotel we stopped at Sprungli for a dozen of their famous macarons. So good! The flavors are strong, but not overwhelming, and the macarons are mini-macarons, making them the perfect indulgence. I am no doctor, but I think they helped heal my aching hands and knees!
We opted to have dinner at our hotel, and when in Rome, or Switzerland in our case, we had cheese fondue. This came with a bag of bread for dipping and we added on baby potatoes and charcuterie. Put a bowl of melted cheese and a bag of bread in front of me and I am a very happy camper. This was a great dinner!
Back to the elbow. It bothered me the rest of the vacation. A dull pain, and I had trouble putting my backpack on (my husband had to put the strap on my left side), and it hurt if I bent it a certain way. This continued for the remaining 10 days of our vacation, when we got home I went to urgent care and had an x-ray, which led to a trip to an orthopedic doctor. Turns out when I fell I dislocated my elbow and popped it back in (how skilled am I?). All I had to do was some stretches to get myself back to 100%. I’m back to as normal as can be now, but when I see a flight of steps I take my time!