Another Switzerland Update – Lucerne and Streetparade

The butterfly guy had some early plans to go into the mountains to observe some of his favorite genus of butterfly with a fellow enthusiast.  Not to hold them back, I was ready to go right after the light breakfast he provided me.  It also included a new cheese to add y to my collection.  It was a firmer variety named Alpkäse, and I ate it on bread.

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After I left I had a busy schedule that would include a lot of trains.  The first thing I did was go over to Lucerne where I was meet with the first blue skies of the trip.  These only enhanced the beauty of the city.  This city had a large number of tourists and many of them were flocking to the chapel bridge and water tower, both located in the water.

 
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Along the bridge were a number of paintings from a few hundred years ago depicting the story of how this city came to be.  There was a fire that destroyed most of them unfortunately.  There is another bridge a few blocks over that has another set of the paintings, though these had a rather more morbid flavor to them.
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Nearby this area was a market selling various cheeses and veggies.  I picked up some emmentaler, which I hadn’t even considered being from this country.  In areas of the world not so well versed in this cuisine it goes by Swiss cheese.  This one was a bit saltier than I prefer.

I had only spent a few hours here, but I saw all that I came for.  And with fun times waiting for me in Zurich, I had to take my leave.  Already at the station platform I could see scads of people gathering for the Streetparade.  This once a year event is the largest techno festival in Europe, and perhaps the world.  It is technically a peace rally so there are no admission fees, one simply needs to rock up wearing something a bit absurd.  The best I could do was my uHN tiSS shirt from Saad, which many people commented on.  Some of the things I saw though can not be unseen…they were incredible!
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I got on the train with a number of others clearly going to the same place, then at every stop along the way were more people of the same ilk waiting to board.  When I arrived in Zurich, it was something else.  The place was huge, but the sheer number of people had it overrun.  Zurich has a population of 500,000 but on this day, especially because of the good weather, it swelled threefold.  Everyone was shuffling to the site of the music but the energy (and unquestionably the alcohol) would bring groups to below out.  The crowd dynamics amplified these to cacophonous roars.  It was a powerful sight to behold.  Everything along they way was turned to rubbish.
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The mass exodus continued and before long we reached a point where we could move no further.  I couldn’t go through the day alone, so I set to finding myself some companions, people to share in the good times with.  Some French speaking Swiss folks started a conversation with me and before long we were chummy.  We spent the whole day chatting and dancing and it was a great time.  As things wound down I decided to take advantage of the trains that were running all night and also my rail pass.  Rather than shelling out for a room, I just slept on the trains all night.  Not a bad deal at all.  When I was fully roused from my groggy state, I decided to visit Lichtenstein, but I’ve already written about that.

One pic of the group that I spent most of the day with.  Good peopleIMG_20130812_190031

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