Thursday, 11 October 2007

St-Cergue - desalpe

A couple of weekends ago now, we decided it was time we do a bit of exploring around Nyon. We timed it well as that weekend was when the cows would be brought down from the alps for winter. The event is called desalpe and occurs in above Nyon in St-Cergue late in September (very well observed by Linda, since otherwise it would have passed us by without our knowledge or attendance).

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So we hopped on the little train that runs up the hill behind Nyon (easy to think of it as a hill, but it actually ends up in the Jura, France) with a fantastic view of the lake below us, and the mountains in France beyond that.

On arriving we caught the tail end of a herd of cattle clomping and clanging their way down the street. We ran to catch a look but needn't have bothered as the cattle do a few laps of the town before wandering off to their winter grazing pastures.

This was a great event for us to catch as we have been in Switzerland a couple of months now but haven't had time to really get much of a feeling of the Swissness of the place. Here we had all the cliches of Switzerland in once place: yodeling, horns, alpine cows with bells around their necks, silly traditional outfits, smelly cheese. You name it.

Sweet music

The other day I cracked and bought a stereo. It wasn't as though we technically needed a stereo system, but we don't as yet have a TV and I was tempted by the Bose Accoustimass system I saw for sale second-hand from a couple in Lausanne who were leaving the country. I got it for 200chf with a Sherwood tuner amplifier, which I thought was a bit of a bargain.

What this has unlocked for us is not only the ability to play music off my laptop through iTunes and AirTunes (I got my mum to ship over my Airport Express), but also lets us tune in to BBC World Radio which has the usual thoughtful discussion oddly mixed in with local content.

In the absence of a TV this has proven to be a sanity restoring device. I've already ordered cable TV for our new apartment. Now all we need is a TV.