My exploring juices have kicked in and I have jumped into action locally!
To start, my homeowners, David and Tammy, wanted to help familiarize me with the town and my electric bike (or e-bike) so they took me on a tour of Oberdiessbach. It didn't last a second over 10 minutes. We went past the cheese shop, meat shop, the "everyday" bakery ( vs. the fancy bakery), the train station, the market, and the barn where you can buy fresh vegetables from one local farm (you pay on the honor system). I believe there are four restaurants and one bar as well, all within about three small blocks. (See a few pictures from my neighborhood, my e bike, and the town below. By the way, I have two e bikes- who's coming?!)
After I pledged to get an e bike for myself in Cardiff (they are genius for hilly towns), I was inspired to zip up and down the hill to the train station as much as possible. So, public transportation fear be gone, and away I went!
Thun (pronounced toon), was the logical first choice for exploration. It is about 15 minutes by train to the south and the closest "big" town. Barring the McDonald's and H&M, Thun could be right out of a fairytale. The flower boxes on the quaint yet stately buildings and covered bridges spilling over. The imposing 12th century Thun Castle in the city center. Swans and ducks swimming about trying to beat the rushing River Aare's current. The narrow cobblestone streets housing two levels of shops. It's a great town and I plan to go hang out there again and again since it's so close. (See pictures below.)
Today I decided to head up to the top of one of the nearest peaks called Niederhorn (about 6300 feet, I think). It was a gorgeous day and I realized just what an outdoor paradise Switzerland is. Ascending up the mountain via funicular and cable car, I saw everything from hiking, mountain biking, and trotti-biking (scooters with kick pedals- need to try that), to hang gliding, sailing, and fishing. I was so inspired by the activity and weather that, after stopping for lunch and a beer at the top, I hiked down from the top to the mid-way point. The views of the snow-covered Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau peaks (classic Swiss icons) were breathtaking and the view of the entire valley with the mountains as background was majestic. (See pictures below.) It was an unreal scene which is why I stopped about every two minutes to take a picture. I feel a Christmas card coming on!!
Until next time!