by Alexandra Rutkowski

I found Rivendell. No, for real. JRR Tolkien hiked to Lauterbrunnen in 1910 and was so blown away by the beauty of it that he created the world of Rivendell here. He based it on Lauterbrunnen. And his sketches made here were used as concept art in the movie. How cool is that? This is paradise.

I’m lying on my hostel bed, a magnificent view of Stummbach falls out the window. There are 72 waterfalls nestled within this valley, all within walking distance. You can hear the rushing water, feel a cool breeze, hear the clanging sounds of cow bells everywhere you go, and you’re surrounded by mountains on every side.

This is perfection.

It was a more relaxing day as I emptied about 20 pounds of my bag into a locker and biked about 10 miles Lauterbrunnen to the next town. I biked for about three hours because I kept getting lost, but it was worth it- everywhere you turn, the view is breathtaking. No picture can ever capture it. You just need to see it.

I ventured into Trummelbach Falls- the only glacier waterfall inside a mountain in Europe that is still accessible. Grand.

I spent the rest of the evening in my hostel, journaling, drawing the view from my window, and listening to worship music.
Can this be home, please?

(Also, one more thing- what are the odds that you’d run into people you used to go to high school with in your hostel?! For my first night in sketchy Tent Village, in the tent next to mine were five guys I used to go to high school with. In middle of nowhere Switzerland. Seriously. The world just got that much smaller.)