Still crazy after all these years

September 11th, 2010

Sitting at the Grosse Schanze, this view that I never tire of. To the right the green wooded hill of the Gurten, in front of me in the foreground the spire of the Heiliggeistkirche and to the left the dome of the Bundeshaus, the tiled rooftops of the city below me, the window boxes of geraniums that are the hallmark of Bern and the backdrop to it all the snowcapped wall of the Alps, the Jungfrau, Mönch, the black diamond of the Eiger Nordwand. Even the Bernese come up here on a blue sky day, lean against the railing and stare out at that view. The hippest trying-to-be-jaded twenty-something will stop in spite of himself, watch a cloud forming around the peaks. I love this view, I’m crazy for this view, I can’t get over this view. This view makes up for Swiss-German, for my outsider status, for being a foreigner, for Swiss reserve, for being away from home and living my life between two languages, two countries, two cultures, two homes. This view helps my heart decide.

9 Responses to “Still crazy after all these years”

  1. Eve on September 12, 2010 4:48 am

    Beautiful photo. I wanna go!

  2. Jennifer on September 12, 2010 2:28 pm

    And of course the photo doesn’t do it justice. We have marginally comfortable space for guests, you 2 are welcome!

  3. kristen on September 13, 2010 12:50 am

    It is beautiful. Lucky girl.

  4. Justine on September 13, 2010 3:36 am

    “This view helps my heart decide” – great line, Jennifer

  5. Jennifer on September 13, 2010 1:42 pm

    I used to see that view almost every day, when we lived in the city. Now that we’re on the farm we don’t see the mountains every day. I miss it so.

  6. Claudia on September 14, 2010 6:57 am

    Beautiful. And I actually can translate most of the terms you used, since Danish and German have some similarities.

    I envy you something that you unequivocally love in your foreign home. I don’t have that. I can imagine how much it could make a difference.

  7. rswb on September 17, 2010 10:58 am

    I go to Bern at least once or twice a week these days, and I’m always so pleased when it’s clear and the mountains are out. We have a beautiful view of the Fribourgeois mountains from our flat, but the mountains you can see from Bern are really something else.

  8. RC on September 22, 2010 7:50 am

    Thanks, now I’m homesick. I’m from Colorado (where’s there’s no view without a mountain in it) and I live in some low flats in southern Germany. There isn’t even a bit of Wald here, just Felder.
    It’s nice to hear you so content with your foreign life. I, too, enjoy the differences, walking through town on stone-paved streets, through huge squares bordered by churches made of huge bricks and built almost a thousand years ago.
    We are lucky. Thanks for the reminder.

  9. Jennifer on September 27, 2010 3:41 am

    RC – it’s funny, but when I’m in Switzerland I get “homesick” for the Rocky Mountain West. I miss the river valleys and changing colors.

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