Kingdom Come.

..to the praise of His glorious grace..

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.)

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Day one. 

10:40 pm. In a sleeper compartment in the night train to Zurich, Switzerland. There’s a hipster sitting next to me.

6:23 am. The hipster is gone, as are all the rest, leaving me alone to admire the marvelous views out the window.

7:30 am. Zurich is lovely. I found a shopping cart in the river. Almost got ran over by a street sweeper. Explored the old city and relaxed by the river. There was a street named Grossmunsterplatz, but in my mind, that translates to “gross monster place.” Needless to say, I didn’t go down that road. Jumped on another train. 

9:28 am. Got lost in Bern. But it’s quite picturesque, so that’s alright with me. Bucket list item. Jumped on another train.

12:07 pm. Hello Interlaken. I’ve been waiting for this for a while. Sat on the shore of Lake Brienz in Interlaken, surrounded by mountains on every side and about fifteen small birds on my park bench. Perfection.

Took a cruise on Lake Brienz. It was so peaceful. Blown away by the beauty. A picture could never capture it. Lord, You make so much beauty most of us have never seen before. You are an artist. Jumped on yet another train.

2:00 pm. Arrived in Meirigen. This is pretty much Sherlock Holmes central. There’s statues of him, hotels, restaurants, and museums dedicated to him. A Holmes fan’s paradise.

Hiked up the mountain to Reichenbach Falls. Took hours but this has been on my bucket list for years. It’s the infamous waterfall where Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty supposedly met their demise. If you know how big a Sherlock fan I am, you can imagine just how excited I got. It was an arduous hike to the very top (mainly because of my 25-lb backpack), but I’ve been dreaming of it for a long while, and it actually happened. I started reading the Final Problem at the top of the falls. Definitely a highlight. There’s something so powerful about seeing something like the falls and just marveling at how God created it so perfectly. Hiking the way down, I got to worship and just talk with Him. Much needed. I was dripping by the time I got down, but hey, it was worth it. Bucket list item. Jumped on a few trains, got lost, and walked a few miles to find my home for the night. 

10:15 pm. An old Asian man is snoring  loudly beneath me and shaking my top bunk in the hostel. I’m starting to fear the bed toppling over. It’s been swaying back and forth, back and forth. And I’m telling you, they don’t call this place Tent Village for nothing. It looks like this place was set up yesterday by someone who got a bunch of plastic tents on a shopping spree at Wal-mart. Either that or it’s an abandoned carnival. Everything, the bar, registration, the hot tub, showers… everything is under those plastic tents. Haha, I can’t believe this place! 

It’s been a busy day. (All this and I only spent $7.) Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

-Alexandra 

Zurich.

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Bern.

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Lake Brienz, Interlaken.

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Meirigen.

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Hike the mountain? Let’s go.

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Many hours later: Mission accomplished. Hiked it. View from the top.

Reichenbach.

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Made it. Made it. Top of Reichenbach, where Sherlock fell.
Still hiked to the top of the mountain afterwards.