This is definitely my favorite picture so far. I've been trying to take lots of pictures of things with the Swiss flag. This was an incredible view of the Alps with the flag in the fore. I couldn't get it to cooperate perfectly so you could see the entire thing, but I think this is pretty good. And yes, those are chickens running around on the ground.
We'll get to the title in a second, its worth it. Today, Alex and I took a train ride about 5-10 miles out of Zurich down the east side of the river to the town where she grew up, Herrliberg
. It is a very cute little hamlet and the views from the hillside are incredible. It is simply beautiful Swiss countryside. We went to the little schoolhouse where Alex went to elementary school and even went to the house where she grew up. Then we hiked even further up the hill and walked through the woods and green farm fields. There were people walking their dogs and playing with their kids. The air is amazingly fresh and the views are great. You'll see some pics below. We walked and walked and walked some more, so now we are beat.
Ok, now on to what I'm talking about in the title. We walked far, far up past the town and into the more coutryside area and there is a small restaurant on a farm that serves a lot of traditional Swiss food. It was a tiny dining room with some local farmers hanging out inside. Well, the menu was mostly meat as it was metzgete
, the slaughtering period. Alex said that it was right about prime slaughter season, so they make all their meat fresh. Sipping on my beer, I couldn't quite decide what I wanted to eat. There was bratwurst, leberwurst (liver sausage), nierewurst (kidney sausage) and some other things. I couldn't make up my mind, so I said whatever is good enough for my lady is good enough for me, so I said "I'll have what she's having" (well, she had to translate for me to the waitress). Well, what she was having was blutwurst (blood sausage). The liver sausage was made of liver and the kidney sausage was made of kidney, but I apparently wasn't in a very literal-thinking mood. Anyway, I got a very large, sausage-looking sausage and cut it open to find a very soft, fine meat inside. With a bit of courage, I took the first bite. It honestly was pretty tasty, especially when I combined it with the rösti
, a Swiss potato dish, much like hash browns. Well, we ate and said our goodbyes which is when Alex finally decided to tell me that the blood sausage was actually made of blood. They fill an intestine or esophogus or whatever they use to stuff sausage in with cow or pig blood and some herbs and stuff and boil it until it congeals to a solid consistency. Alex has assumed that since I ordered it with such confidence that I knew what I would be getting, which was definitely not the case. I was wondering why she playing dumb when I asked her if it was pig meat. Anyway, it really tasted pretty good, I was just so surprised at what it really was. Like I said, I wasn't thinking literally; I didn't think that the blood sausage was actually made of blood
. It's just that afterwards, when she told me, a whole lot of things retroactively made sense - why she acted so surprised when I ordered it, why she wouldn't tell me what it was made out of because it was too late to change my order, and lots of other things. It was pretty funny, and I must say that I was pretty proud that I ate boiled pigs blood. Seriously, look it up
. There are no pictures in that article that quite do justice to what I actually had, but you'll get the idea. Ok, enough about that. We had a great great day walking around the Swiss countryside with great views of the lake and the Alps. Tomorrow is my last day here, which is sad, but the week has passed slow enough that it does not feel over too soon. Here are some of the good pics I got today.
Here is the former Schaerrer Swiss homestead. This is where Alex was born and raised until the age of 14. I know that it is difficult to make out from the picture, but it is a beautiful house with and indoor pool and big backyard.
Great view down the hill looking at Herrliberg.
This is Blümlisalp, the restaurant that served me one of the grossest sounding and looking things that I have ever seen, but it was quite tasty.
Here is little Ali bonding with some billy goats outside Blümlisalp
Good view of the mountains, but that doesn't quite capture it. I can't describe to you how it looked in person.
Cool view of homes across Lake Zurich from the hill we were climbing.
Little Alex in little house in a park that she used to play in as a little Swiss school girl. We actually saw trees that she remembers climbing and places she used to hide. Very cute, she got pretty nostalgic.