A heat wave greets us
06.17.2013 - 06.18.2013 91 °F
Lucerne (English) or Luzern (German) is gorgeous in any language. The city is located on the western shore of Lake Lucerne where the Reuss (pronounced ‘royce’) River flows out of the lake.
If you arrive by train or boat, you’re steps from Old Town. Unless you turn away from Bahnhofstrasse as we did. Just walk the Bahnhofstrasse along the River Reuss, and you’ll be looking at the iconic Chapel Bridge in minutes.
It was not a good day to get lost. It was hot. Ninety degrees, and we were sweaty, tired and hungry. All of us were grumpy—my wife, my daughter, my grandson, and I. But we crossed the Rathaus Bridge and found a table at the Rathaus Brauerei. As you can probably figure out from their name, they brew beer. Very good beer. We sat down and ordered, and my 15-year-old grandson knocked down a glass of bier before the rest of us had even lifted ours. His mood mellowed instantly. And in a few minutes, all our moods were lighter.
I thought the experience of drinking beer in Switzerland at his age—which is common for the Swiss—would be my contribution to his upbringing. He could learn to drink responsibly. Unfortunately, he shows the promise of taking after his Pop (me).
After dinner we walked to the Chapel Hill Bridge, a mandatory activity in Lucerne. But before we crossed, we spotted a Gelateria. We had become hooked on the stuff in Italy. So we ordered not just one scoop, but two. After beer and after gelato, we were all feeling better. It was almost 8 p.m.; the evening had cooled us down, and we made our way back to the B&B Lucerne on bus number 1.
The B&B Lucerne is a ten-minute bus ride from downtown. It resides in the type of neighborhood I always wanted to live but could never afford. Stately, graceful homes built around the 1900s on narrow, tree-lined streets, wrought-iron fences, and gates with handcrafted handles. You get the picture. The home is charming. We had the “family” room. One huge corner room with four beds, shuttered windows, and no air conditioning. I liked the fact that there was no television, no radio, and no noise. So it was a bit warm. You open the shutters, you feel the evening breeze, and within minutes you’re asleep.
The next morning, Simone had breakfast for us. The evening before Andrea checked us in and showed us to our room. Both young ladies were charming. They actually seemed to enjoy what they were doing. They told us the B&B is operated by six women, no men. Their website gives some background on each of them. So I guess men—and especially old ones like myself—are becoming obsolete. But if the women to rule the world are like Andrea and Simone, we’ll all be better off.
Tueday morning is warm. We decide to forego walking around. Instead we’ll go to the beach. It was a good choice. Lucerne has a beautiful park and beach just minutes away from the train station. So we cooled off in the lake, swimming with the swans that are said to be descendants of birds given to the Swiss by Louis the XIV, in appreciation for the protection afforded by Swiss Guards.