Monday, 9 February 2009

The First Days

Yesterday our luggage arrived!! YAY! I was so happy to see it. Before that, though, the day was a little rough. I think the first day you arrive in a new country is the hardest. Tired. Hungry. Lost. Frustrated. That pretty much sums up how I often feel on the first day, and this time it was magnified by not having our luggage. On Sunday, after taking a water only shower, we put on the the same icky clothes we wore the day before on the long journey here and ventured out to eat and find some toiletries and basics for the apartment we're staying in. (The apartment had nothing besides the furniture--no soap or anything, which didn't occur to us before we left the airport without our luggage, so we didn't think to buy any there, duh. We're just used to hotels where they have that stuff if you need it.) We quickly learned that just about everything in Zurich is closed on Sundays. It looked like a ghost town out on a lot of the main streets. In our search for an open grocery store, Andrew read online that there's a shopping plaza at the main train station which is open on Sundays, where there's also a grocery store, so we headed there. It was snowing and looked peaceful and calm outside. On the way there we thought we'd try to stop for breakfast or coffee, but the first place we went to was so smoky that I barely opened the door all the way before saying, nope--not eating here. I hate eating in smoky places, which is almost unavoidable in Europe, but I really wasn't in the mood that morning. So we went to get coffee at a coffee shop. Again, it was filled with smokers, so we got the coffees and a pastry to go. Then we found the shopping plaza and bought some diapers for Lois, shampoo, soap, lotion--all the bathroom stuff, and some groceries. We just hung out at the apartment the rest of the afternoon anxiously awaiting the arrival of our luggage and went to bed early (Lois had a harder time adjusting to the time difference, but we got her to sleep eventually).

Today was much better. A the top of this post is a picture from our apartment window. It looks out onto some buildings and a park beyond that. This morning when I was making coffee there was a huge flock of birds playing and flying around in the park, which you can see in the picture at the top if you look closely. I cropped one of the pictures so you could see them better. They looked so pretty. We bought the coffee the day before but forgot sugar. I noticed out the window that there was a little corner market on the street across from ours.

The little corner market is great, though you can't really tell in this picture from our apartment window. They have everything we could possibly need (well, except diapers) and a few things we don't need (but like!) like wine and cheese. I walked over there first thing and got a yummy croissant and some sugar.

Andrew headed to work and Lois and I ventured out on the train to go to Niederdorf, or the "old town" as I think it's also called. I heard that this area has a lot of antique shops and second hand places on Passport to Europe, but I didn't see many today, though I wasn't there very long since Lois was getting tired of the stroller after being out for a while. It seemed like a general shopping area. The old winding streets were charming and filled with tons of shops and restaurants. We'll go back another day and look around some more. In the meantime, there are some more pictures here that are really nice and this video is good too.

Tonight we had dinner at a wonderful restaurant that I read about called Fribourger where we had real fondu! I thought the menu was written really nicely, though I couldn't read most of the words.

It was soooo delicious, and the staff was incredibly friendly and gracious. They spoke English to us and didn't mind us bringing a baby (we went early and Lois slept in her stroller). We also had a salad and yummy pear sorbet with pear brandy. As you can see today was better than yesterday. And tomorow will be even better than that. You know why? Because it's Lois' 4th month birthday! I told her this morning that tomorrow is her birthday and this was the look she gave me. She's excited! To celebrate, she's having her first solid food! Pictures to come.


caroline said...

happy birthday baby L. i miss you and your mama and papa.


Freshly Found said...

How wonderful to have a 5 week experience like this! All the best!