Sunday, April 1, 2012

I love Fribourg

We took a really enjoyable day trip to Fribourg today.  Friboug is an old medieval town on the border of French and German speaking part of Switzerland.  It used to be more evenly spit, but right now it's only about 20% German speaking.  The train ride takes about 80 minutes, through beautiful scenery, with old chateaus to the left and right. Train rides work out quite well with the kids - they alternate playing on the ipad, they can go to the bathroom if they need to, and we have snacks. I brought my kindle with, after having downloaded some books from the library, and also played some games on my phone.

Once in Fribourg, we got off to rough start. I had done some research online, but mostly had a list of things I wanted to ask at the tourist office. The tourist office was poorly marked from the train station, so we walked down one street, up another, until finally we found it - and it was closed on Sunday, anyway. So, back to the train station.  There was a placard there with a suggested walking tour, so we took a photo of it, and started walking. I thought we'd to a little side trip to a famous fountain on the way, but what looked like something close by was actually quite far down a hill that we'd have to climb up again, so we retreated, followed by a drunk guy shouting at us. Eric had goose bumps because he'd brought only his fleece vest instead of a jacket (it's been so warm recently). But when we arrived, it was chilly and windy, and the sun was behind clouds.  The kids were even a little chilly in their insulated jackets.

Then things started looking up.  Thankfully the sun came out and warmed us all up, and we discovered that the walking path was fairly well marked and went through the really interesting old medieval section of town. And there were very few tourists, practically none. I don't know why that is, it's certainly very picturesque and worth visiting.

We had lunch at a restaurant just over this bridge.  It was a very local place, not touristy at all - not that there were any tourists around.  I had some very oily Rostli (kind of like hash browns) with cheese and eggs. I asked the waiter for tap water, which is not commonly done here.  He hesitated for a moment, but brought some.  He spoke German, so I was able to practice that a bit.

Moments after taking this picture, Peter burst out crying.  We peppered him with questions that he didn't answer - did the goat bite you, did it butt your hand, etc.  We couldn't figure out what happened!  It turned out that the fence is actually electrified, in a weird way - the plastic woven cord has tiny wires in it, and Peter happened to touch one of them.

I just read in the paper - this beautiful, sunny, warm weather is not normal.  Apparently it's the sunniest March on record since 1953.

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