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Christian Wilderness Press - Jim Durham's visit to ROMANIA – Switzerland, Zurich area 2009
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Switzerland - Zurich area
Okay, you are in luck. This is my final photo report from my mission trip to Romania. Based on so many photos, you probably think that I did no mission work. But if you can remember that far back, my first report was on our mission work.
I had to change planes in Zurich, Switzerland, going to and coming from Romania. So I decided to spend a day in Switzerland, just to see what I could see in a day. It is a country that I think most people would enjoy seeing. I took a 10-hour bus tour from Zurich to Lucerne (Luzern) and then to Engelmont at the edge of the Alps. It was a day well spent. The Swiss have three primary languages - German, French, and Italian...obviously because they border Germany, France, and Italy (not even mentioning Liechtenstein).
Originally I had hoped to be able to visit Bertrand Piccard and his Solar Impulse project in Lausanne. His family was our neighbors on Singer Island, Florida, in the late 1960’s. His father, Jacques, was a world famous oceanographer and was building a submarine at that time to be used in research in the gulf stream. Jacques holds the record for going to the deepest part of the ocean - about 7 miles down to the bottom of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean, accompanied by US Navy Lt. Don Walsh. Jacques father, Auguste, designed the sub that took Jacques to the bottom or the ocean. Prior to that, Auguste and his twin brother, Jean Felix, had been world famous balloonists, holding altitude records. In 1931, Auguste ascended to more than 50,000 feet with a balloon containing a pressurized cabin, which he built. Jean Felix also accomplished similar feats.
The Piccard family was wonderful neighbors, always humble and courteous. Jacques was 6’7”, not your normal submarine person. After the submarine (the Ben Franklin) and the voyage was completed, the family moved back to Switzerland .
Jacques died last November, but the family spirit of adventure and exploration lives on. Ten years ago Bertrand, along with his copilot, became the first persons to circumnavigate the earth in a balloon. Now he has initiated a project known as Solar Impulse to design and build a solar powered airplane to fly around the earth nonstop. Betrand likens it to the flight of the Wright brothers. Before I left the USA, unfortunately I received an email stating that on my one day there Bertrand would be involved in testing so as to qualify for flying the plane upon its constructed. Thus, I did not get to see him or the work he is doing.
Everything I saw about Switzerland is beautiful; my photos will give you a glimpse of a portion of it. And one great thing (I think) is that the people get to vote on every piece of legislation, having elections every two months. They have a congress similar to ours and their president is elected every year from a seven-member executive council. Not until 1971 did women get the right to vote. Presently three women serve on the executive council. The biggest negative that I experienced were the prices...higher than the Alps.
The rolling countryside is beautiful and clean. However, if you are a mountain person like me, the Alps are very beautiful. I only saw the beginning of them, but enough to be impressed. I have flown over them before, and they are impressive from the air, but on the ground and looking at them was much better. Like every place I have been, I want to return. (The next time, I hope to meet Heidi and learn to yodel.)
"All aboard". Swiss farms below.
The Alps at a distance. Flying into Zurich.
Zurich, big and busy. Leaving Zurich on bus and heading for countryside.
Sheep grazing on a hillside. Swiss dairy farm (producing swiss chocolate milk?).
Farms and small villages. Passing through a village.
In Lucerne, a monument to soldiers. Nine swans a-swimming.
Cathedral in Lucerne. Flower market.
Vegetable market. Old wooden bridge in Lucerne, over Lake Lucerne.
Lucerne (Luzern). Note castle on the hill. More of the city.
Bridge and tower. Leaving Lucerne, going to Engelmont.
Farm house. Passing through villages.
Going round the curves. Above houses and villages. Note waterfall across valley.
The village of Engelmont (Angel Mount). Engelmont
More of Engelmont. Note siding on house.
How do I get back to Lucerne? Building in Engelmont.
A street in Engelmont. Swiss francs per liter (about $6.00 per gallon).
Back to Zurich. Switzerland, great (swiss chocolate) ice cream.
Yummy, but time to go home.
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