Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Summer 2012 - The last vacation before repatriation to the US

US June/July 2012: Kandersteg, New Rochelle, Syracuse, Mexico

The month of June was stressful as we tried to sell what we could and pack what was left for our repatriation back to the US.  Once the kids finished school at the end of June, we officially vacated our apartment and traveled to Kandersteg for our last vacation in Switzerland.  Kandersteg is one of the most beautiful places in Switzerland and is also where the boy scouts have their international scout center.  Sandy’s grade goes on a field trip every year to Kandersteg, so Sandy new the area fairly well. Upon arriving in Kandersteg, we went for a swim in the local community pool to cool off from the train ride from Zurich without AC.  I had an unfortunate diving accident and tore my right calf muscle.  We thought about going to see the doctor, but I knew what it was as I had done the same thing on left calf the year before.  We decided to go back to the Scout Center – one of the scouts pick us up in a van so that we did not have to walk.  We got ourselves unpacked and then had dinner at the Scouts Center.  There were different scout troupes from around the world and some of these kids were really impressive to watch at the dinner table – quiet, good manners, courteous, etc. 

The next day, we took a hike to the Oeschinen See.  The hike involved a gondola ride from Kandersteg and then about a 20 minute walk to the lake.  The walk was more like 45 min with my leg.  We had a nice picnic lunch and enjoyed the views as the kids played by the water.  We started hiking back when we came across a little shuttle transporting people back to the gondola.  Given my leg, we decided to take advantage of the shuttle.  There is also a Rodobahn at the same location as the gondola, so we let the kids take a few rides before heading back down to the Scout Center

Day three was the highlight.  We went to the rope park, which involves obstacles and zip lines connected to trees at high elevations (30 feet overhead).  Sandy went with the kids the first time around, which started with a “training” course at a lower elevation.  After they passed their training, they proceed onto the real thing.  After making a pass altogether, Sandy let the kids go on their own a couple of times.  They kids loved it. 

On Monday, we got ourselves to Zurich and got on a plane for the US.  I wanted the trip back to be memorable, so I got business class tickets.  The kids were so thankful for the “big seats”.  When the stewardess came to take our order, the kids acted like they fly business class all the time - real pros.
We rented a car and got ourselves to New Rochelle.  We stayed overnight at the Marriot at New Roc City, had a meeting with our builder in the morning, and then proceeded to Syracuse.  We spent a couple days in Syracuse and then jumped back on a plane to Mexico.  I stayed in Mexico for about 10 days (split between Mexico City and Acapulco), before heading back to Zurich to help out with the second quarter.  Sandy and the kids stayed behind and visited family in Puebla and QuerĂ©taro.