As you can tell, Christmas is still on my mind. Here’s my very first taste of Christmas in Geneva.
‘Let’s go to Geneva for Christmas,’ my friend said.
It was late autumn 2004 and we were taking French classes. As our vocabulary was expanding, my friend had a bright idea of putting that knowledge into practice.
‘Why not France?’
‘It’s harder to get a visa to France. Let’s go to Geneva for Christmas, and get back in time to celebrate New Year. We’ll have the best of both festivals.’
It sounded like a good plan, so after a few rounds of this conversation, I agreed to go. She had a friend working at a travel agents, and all I needed to do was to hand over my passport and money for her to sort it all out.
Finally the big day arrived and we headed to celebrate our first ever Christmas in Geneva. Arriving at a deserted small town with a giant lake and a tall fountain gushing in the middle of a lake was a shock to the system. There was nothing festive about Geneva. Coming from a country with no tradition of celebrating Christmas, we had no idea that it was a family festival, that everyone was either at home, or had booked every available seat in the restaurants. The next day, we walked the empty streets of Geneva with rubbish flying around us. It was surreal, almost like a scene from one of Stephen King’s books. All the shops were closed, you couldn’t see a single person on the street, and there was definitely no one to speak to in French.
The next day was no better.
To read the rest of this post, please, visit Solveig Werner’s website.
Note: This is the last of my guest posts this year. I’ve been a guest on five different blogs in the last month, which was amazing. Starting from January, normal service will resume.
I’m signing off the Internet on 17 December for two weeks. Wishing you all a joyful festive season. See you all in 2017!
Photo credit: with thanks to Google images.