Yes that’s right, I really am back again in my Suisse bien-aimée. I type this sitting in an empty,
vigorously air-conditioned train carriage in Geneva airport, waiting to set off for Lausanne once again. I felt a sudden burst of nostalgia and decided to bring out my laptop and start typing, as I was wont to do on the way to the airport back when I held that hallowed status of exchange student. The train ride from Geneva isn’t too pretty but I’m just waiting for the lake, mountains and cows to materialise to really feel like I’m back. Nevertheless the inspiration and urge to write hit me as soon as I set foot on Swiss soil. Basically, I love this place and I like to think that it loves me.
So what’s been happening since the last time I was here, when I managed to squeeze out only one article (sorry about that)? Indeed, what’s been happening since I left Switzerland over a year ago at the end of my ERASMUS? I figure, now we’re past the 12-month mark, it’s a good time to look back and see how things have developed and, most importantly, how the relationships that I built since I was last here have evolved. Well, my Swiss bestie (of madcap Florence escapades and the inspiration for my most read article) is still very much my bestie, though on another continent. I have had reunions with four exchange friends outside of Switzerland (Paris, London, Berlin) and one friend I met in Lausanne but who was not on exchange (Brussels). I have managed to keep in contact with a number of friends from further away, with varying levels of frequency; though distance is not the determining factor, as above bestie can account for. Naturally, when I was in Lausanne in May I had a number of reunions with people who were still there, all highly emotional, of course.
Though I don’t speak to a lot of my Lausanners (that’s what I’ve just this moment decided to call ya’ll) as much as I would like, there is no doubting the enrichment they have afforded my life. Some people with whom I got on famously I don’t actually speak to at all anymore (though we are still friends on Facebook); it was inevitable, but I nevertheless have the fondest memories of them and would be happy to pick up where we left off at any point, as I’m sure (I hope) they would be too. Something of a part-time misanthropist, I never thought it could be possible to really like such a large proportion of the people that I met, but it happened in Schweiz.
It is unbelievable how relaxed I feel here, on this train to Lausanne. I feel more relaxed than when I fly home to London. I think it has something to do with numbers – of people that is. There are just so few people around at this time of day, in stark contrast to the rush hour masses I have to face every day in London now that I am working full time (more on that later). Also the weather is great, the air is clean (more on my fixation on THAT later, too), it’s quiet… I’m back in paradise.
So what’s this about a farm, I hear you ask. Well, the reason I have come back this time is to spend some time with my Frenchie before we are separated for a number of months, and he is currently living with a charming Swiss family on a farm outside Lausanne. As in, they have cows. This is a vast improvement on the crazy lady from whom we were subletting back in May, a story worthy of its own post, watch this space! I’m only here for five days this time, on my last Swiss visit for the foreseeable future, and I’m getting the real deal this time. I’ma be living with cows.