HELLO FROM GENEVA!
After a harrowing trip to the airport (insane amounts of traffic, being stuck in the Holland Tunnel due to an accident), I had an incredibly smooth flight over and landed in Geneva yesterday morning around 7:45am to big hugs from AshleyÂ and Bo.
Much of our itinerary had been up in the air other than a truffle festival next weekend due to my inability to commit, but I knew that the plan was to drop my stuff at their apartment and head out for a hike. I donâ€™t handle jet lag terribly well, so I was a bit nervous about this plan but knew that moving after a long overnight flight would be good for me.
The plan was to head to Chamonix, France and hike to Lac Blanc. Ashley had hiked to Lac Blanc before and had taken the La FlÃ©gÃ¨re lift to about halfway up and then hiked the rest of the way up. When Ashley did this hike last time, it was about 3 hours. Even that, I was a bit apprehensive about, but I soldiered on.Â Well, the gondola was closed, so instead we just started from the bottom…
This was the view from about halfway up, once we were above the tree line.
BRB, just gonna nap here.
When we left, it felt pretty chilly, so I was wearing long pants, a long-sleeved tech tee and a jacket. I took off the jacket about 3 minutes into the hike, and maybe an hour in, I was feeling really hot. Ashley was wearing both a tank and this tee, so she literally gave me the shirt off her back, which I was very thankful for.
The plan, as I said, was to hike up to the lake at the top, where Ashley had said there would be food and beer. As the hike got more difficult, we kept saying FOR THE BEER! Weâ€™re doing this for the beer! We started passing other hikers and asked about the â€œrefugeâ€ at the top, as it was called, and nobody seemed to think it was open. Welp, letâ€™s just keep hikingâ€¦hopefully we can still get water at the top?!
Just a little shot for scale.
I told Ashley at one point that I was basically composing this post in my head: â€œI landed from a transatlantic flight, went and hiked a mountain, got pulled way out of my comfort zone, and it was worth it, of course. Also, beer.”
Iâ€™m not super afraid of heights, but Iâ€™m really really cautious in any situation where I might be in the slightest bit of physical danger. Iâ€™ll ski black diamonds, but really slowly. I donâ€™t hike much and was clearly dehydrated from the flight, so it was Strugglebus, Population 1.
Just some casual ladder climbing in the middle of a mountain, as you do.
Too much adrenaline to care about jet lag.
The view was okay?
Iâ€™m not reallyÂ afraid of heights, but it wasÂ a little nauseating looking down at this.
Little Monopoly houses…
Ashleyâ€™s friend Renaud pointed us to the fastest way down, which included descending at least 10 ladders.
Mom, donâ€™t worry. Iâ€™ve totally got this.
THESE DUDES CLIMBED THAT. WHAT?!
Going up, I was way behind the pack, but coming down, at least for a portion, I was happy to beast it out and get down as quickly (and safely, Mom) as possible.
7 hours and 12 miles later, I finally got my beer. We went to a cute little bar at the bottom called Le Slalom.
We drove the hour back to Geneva, and I finally got a chance to nap and slept hard.
Today weâ€™re laying kind of low (which is a huge requirement on any vacation for me), but my big agenda for the week includes adventures to Cote du Rhone, Gruyere and a truffle festival. I am in freaking heaven.
What does a good vacation look like to you?