Sunday, September 12, 2010

Arriving in the dark

Getting to our hostel nestled in the Swiss Alps in a small village called Gryon definitely made us appreciate the daylight. Tom Tom doesn’t usually let us down, but unfortunately this handy gadget didn’t prepare us for a slight predicament.

Coming from southern Germany, the drive was long and we didn’t particularly know what to expect when arriving in Gryon. A couple we met in Cesky Krumlov had told us if we didn’t go anywhere else in Europe, we definitely had to come here and enjoy the homely chalet hostel as well as the exceptional views of the Swiss Alps. Winding our way up the hill with very little street light, we managed to make out nothing but vines on the side of the road. There was wine here!! Yeeew! We definitely knew we were going to love the place now! After travelling at least 20 minutes up the hill, our excitement quickly turned into that sinking feeling as we pulled up in front of a complete roadblock 5 minutes from the hostel. If we had of kept on driving, we would have ended up in a great big hole. It was 9:30pm and we were ready for bed after a long day, but Tom Tom was not helping. It was another reminder of the reliability of technology…or lack of. This is where Tom Tom AND a map definitely comes in handy. It was the map that got us to the hostel that night….just.

We discovered that the hostel has no carpark, so finding it at the end of a long walkway up the hill was slightly stressful to say the least. I think we managed to refrain from completely chewing each other’s heads off, which was positive. It was a relief when we finally walked through the door of the hostel….only to find out that there was no record of any booking we had made online. We glanced at each other with a roll of the eyes. Thankfully, there was space for us and our lost souls had found a home.

Moral of the story….arriving at your destination in the day time is definitely easier, especially if you’re accounting for any type of hiccup, including road blocks! However, the view that was revealed from the front windows and deck in the morning made arriving in the dark with all the headaches so worth it. The amazing alpine scene was all the more striking because it was the very first time we were seeing it. The hostel is nestled high into the alps, overlooking the vast mountainous landscape, a panoramic picture that made me never want to look away. Thankfully I wouldn’t have to for the next 4 days.

The morning view


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