I just came back from a short trip to Obereggenen (again). As always, we stayed at the Rebstock, the hotel that my grandparents first stayed at in 1968, that my parents first came to with us kids in 1987 and have been coming back to for almost every year since.
You might think that it would be getting old coming here, but the consistency that comes with returning to a place you know inside-out is kind of nice. And then there are these little changes you notice from one year to the next, like that the town’s main street had just been redone or the phone booth in front of the old town hall that we used to make calls home in the pre-cellphone era, is now gone.
Out of the ordinary
On this vacation, I did a lot of things, I don’t normally do, starting with a big breakfast of rolls, tea, grape juice and an egg. At home, I am too lazy to prepare any of these things, so normally I just slap a slice of cheese or some cold cuts onto a piece of bread and have a glass of apple juice with it (total breakfast-time < 10 minutes). Dinner as well, was a lot bigger than usual. They serve great, five-course gourmet meals that are very thought out with a lot of neat ideas to make them more interesting, including table decorations and the way the food is arranged.
However, I am quite a picky eater: There is the list of things I like and then the much longer list of things I don’t like. Unfortunately, much of what we had tended to be in the latter category. Not that it was bad (quite on the contrary), it’s just not my cup of tea. I am generally pretty happy with extremely simple meals (pizza, pasta, that kind of thing), probably because I hate the inevitable waiting that comes with anything that’s more complex to prepare.
Vitra Design Museum: Awesome
On Tuesday, we went to the Vitra Design Museum. Like many good museums, the museum’s building is quite interesting in its own right (I’ll add some pictures once I get them from my dad’s camera). As for the designs the have on display, I am not sure. There are some classics, like iconic from Charles and Ray Eames, but many of those I don’t find that interesting. For one, because I am not willing to spend several thousand Euros on a single chair, and even if I did., I don’t have the kind of apartment to do these pieces justice. I think you need to have some space to properly present them (as they do at Vitra), while I am the proud owner of a mere one-bedroom apartment. And I get the feeling such pieces would clash with my other IKEA furniture.
Consequently, I didn’t buy any of their more affordable things at the museum’s shop either. Except for a book, 101 Things I Learned in Architecture School. Great book, even if you don’t plan on going to architecture school. And by the way, even though there is a Kindle version, you must get it in hardcover. I just don’t think you get the full experience in eBook form.
Living on the EDGE
I also took this as an opportunity to kind of take a hiatus from the internet, albeit an involuntary one. While the hotel does have Wi-Fi throughout the building, my room at the far end was about just out of reach. And, as is common in the countryside, there was of course no 3G. So I was left with EDGE. Felt like being thrown back to the days of dial-up.
Furthermore, I traveled with a really light load, gadget-wise. Of all my gadgets, I only brought my phone and my Kindle. And I have no regrets. In the past I probably would have brought my laptop, but there was really anything, I couldn’t do on my phone (well, except preparing this post and touching up the pictures you see here). Nonetheless, I have no regrets. Even if I would have had my Windows 8 tablet/convertible already, I don’t think I would have brought it. Traveling with just those two devices, is more than enough.
For the trip back home, I took the train, but instead of taking the fastest route, I took the more scenic one along the river Rhine. The area around the Loreley is just so lovely. It’s probably the most beautiful train route I know. As the river cuts through rock and tiny villages squeeze onto the space between the banks of the river and the rock walls. Below is one of those villages in a part where the valley widens a little (please excuse the poor quality, it was taken from a fast moving train with little time to focus let alone adjust any other settings).
When I came home, I noticed that my kitchen was closed (something I couldn’t recall doing before leaving), and one of my running shoes had been pulled out of the shoe rack. Seemed like a very strange thing for a burglar to do. Turns out it wasn’t a burglar: When I opened the kitchen door, my Roomba was sitting right behind it. It must have gotten hold of one of the shoe laces and then pulled the shoe down, afterwards closing the door behind it. Funny little fella.