I can’t stop thinking about it, and I don’t want to, either. Our surreal week in Switzerland’s mountain village, Mürren, was one out of a storybook—an intricately-decorated, display-worthy story book. Like the kind that ends up on your coffee table during the holidays.
I just can’t get it out of my head. What do we have to do to make this home (we can’t), should I learn to ski so that we make this a yearly winter trip (I won’t), is it possible for two people to exist on meat and cheese alone (no, but A+ for trying). It still haunts me: Even looking through these photos, I feel that pull. Look, I’ll settle for living in Zürich (ha! Settle. As if). I’ve memorized our commute to the mountaintop haven. It’s simple:
From Zürich, take the train to Bern. From Bern, take the train to Interlaken Ost. From Interlaken Ost, take the train to Lauterbrunnen. From Lauterbrunnen, take the gondola up the mountain. From there, it’s just one more short train ride to Mürren.
Easy as pie! The kind of pie that takes you three hours to make, but so what?
Our time in this little slice of heaven was during the off-season, and when I say off-season, I mean it: With only one (maybe two) hotels open, and two restaurants open in the entire village, it was perplexing to some (including us), what, exactly, we’d do there. But with access to a number of hikes that afforded unbelievable views, a small grocery store that was open about two hours per day (which became a beloved morning routine, truly it did), and an unfailing fondness for BBC Entertainment, we were more than fine. Even when we were bored, we were never really, truly bored. How can you be, when the view from your window looks like this?
For now, Mürren will remain the place that, as time passes, becomes a deeper, more distant memory; a place that I’ll wonder was even real at all. But I have proof—I was there. And even on those days that I thought I couldn’t possibly watch another episode of Father Brown (in which Mark Williams of Harry Potter fame is fabulous, by the way), or eat another slice of meat (if we had earned points for buying salami at the grocer, we would have, well, probably gotten a free salami), or take another long, breathtaking hike (both literally—ah! elevation!—and in its beauty), I remain grateful for the time we so sincerely enjoyed here.
Together. In this place where the smell of pine is overwhelmingly delicious. Where the water, cold and crisp and straight from the mountains, flows freely from spigots throughout the village, to be collected into our bottles pre- and post-hike. Where the wind one morning whipped so viciously it sent the window shutters banging and startled us awake. Where I added another solid word to my German vocabulary—geschlossen, which means “closed” (a joke about the off-season, but a solid vocab addition, if I do say so myself)—and spread chocolate on my morning bread (a habit that I’ve brought home). A place where we were able to feel alone, but together. Where solitude (duotude?) was welcomed, the crowds and sounds of sirens and horns a million miles away. Where we felt like we really, truly had everything we could ever need.