Sunday, May 11, 2014

Interlaken, Switzerland: Paragliding Paradise

Switzerland was everything Gibby and I needed at that point in our euro trip. As soon as we crossed the border I think I breathed a sigh of utter relief. The terrors of Milan and Naples were behind us and the Swiss alps were before us. We chose to stay at a hostel in Interlaken, a small town situated next to lake Thun (pronounced toon as in cartoon, not thun as in thunder up). I learned this from my super awesome paragliding guide who looked scarily similar to Sean Bean from National Treasure. Did I mention I went paragliding? Yeah, I did. 
We originally were only going to stay one night in Switzerland and then head to Paris, but we loved it so much (and the trains were so messed up) that we decided to stay for two. I'm so glad we had an entire full day! 
Switzerland is on the Swiss franc and we honestly could only afford McDonald's. So we ate it for dinner two nights in a row. 
We spent our time aimlessly turning corners and reveling in actual beds and hot showers. 
I didn't go to Switzerland with the intention of paragliding, but we were walking around a park in the center of town and it seemed to be the designated landing place for other paragliders. I told Kylie I needed to at least see how much it would cost before I could get the activity out of my head. 
After getting more information I decided money is just money and I knew I would never regret spending it on something so amazing. So just a few minutes later I found myself on a van climbing the side of a mountain with a few other passengers. We received a few careful instructions once we arrived at the take off location, and then we were off! The experience was indescribable. I cannot do it justice in words. Paragliding is bigger than words, it's another world where words have yet to be invented. We brushed the tops of trees and watched the sun bounce off of Lake Thun and the tip of the Alps. We did flips and twirls and the smile on my face was permanent for the entire day. Even now, when I reflect on it, I can feel the corners of my mouth lift. Paragliding in Switzerland is something I will treasure forever. I received a flashdrive with pictures and video on it and it became my most prized souvenir. 
Gibby took pictures from the ground for me since she opted out of the paragliding and after I was safely landed, we ate world's worst burgers before setting off on a mini-hike. We were not at all prepared so it was awkwardly short, but we found some incredible views. That evening we snuggled into our beds, watched Remember the Titans, munched on Swiss chocolate, and dreamed of the Eiffel Tower. A Very Lucky Girl was Paris-bound the next day. 


No comments:

Post a Comment