Tag: en route

A Very Long Detour

Philadelphia the beautiful

In contrast to the flight there, I felt very relaxed when I boarded the plane home. Sunlight was streaming in. The flight attendants were extremely friendly and joked in flawless English and Spanish. A couple of guys brought instruments on board and the coolest flight attendant, a bald guy who’d just said something witty in Spanish, quipped, “In-flight entertainment!” as he helped put up an accordion. It was a rather festive environment that almost made me feel happy to be suddenly flying home for no reason my heart could understand.

From One End to the Other: Switzerland Part 3

Aboard the Glacier Express

The rest of my time in Switzerland was a little of everything. Cédric’s family and I drove across the country (a 3 hour drive with traffic) to their hometown of Gebenstorf near Baden in the German part. The first thing I walked into was South Park in German. It was strange to hear a dub of Cartmann.

My visit fell on the Baden festival, the biggest festival in Switzerland which happens once every five years (cinquennially?). Every five years they alternate between the small and big versions of the festival. This year it was the small one.

France Fail


Leaving Ireland, I acutely felt myself standing at the end of one era (if one and a half weeks is enough time for an era) and at the beginning of another. I remember the odd combination of sadness and excitement, not so much a mix of the two as the emanations of two separate parts of me focused on very different things. We people are divided creatures.

What a feeling of freedom, though, to look out along the distant waters waiting for a new country to appear. You stand on the railing at sunrise fighting the chilly breeze and straining to catch a whiff of so many new stories you know lie beyond the horizon, too far as of yet for your senses to begin molding into comprehensible shapes….

Open Misery

Machynlleth's clock tower

Leaving Brecon was a relief. I could only be going to better places. (Please nobody from Brecon ever read this). But there was half a day and two bus transfers before my next destination, Llanberis. Do you know what that meant? Or what I thought it meant? More quaint little towns and beautiful countryside.

Armed with the knowledge of “bws safle,” I continued on, reaching a town whose name I forget. All I do remember is hoping there would be a cafe there so I could get some coffee and being disappointed, either because it wasn’t there or I didn’t have enough time. We passed more of the same countryside until we got to Machynlleth (pronounced Mahynheth), a tiny town that the hostel worker told me was really cute. Well, it had a nice tower.