Zurich looks like a place where the life is a bit easier.
It makes a perfect sense, because they say it has the highest nominal wealth per adult in the world, and the Swiss people have the second-highest life expectancy in the world. You can feel it everywhere you go.
There’s no cheap shopping in Switzerland. The train ticket for the 30 minutes ride will cost you 24 franks, which is around 20 euros, and the fresh bread around 5. The only reason why you’re not going to decide to starve yourself and walk this distance on your tired feet is: in Switzerland you know where do your money go. The bread is just fresher, the train ride is more fun and the grass looks greener.
We woke up quite early, before eight and took a train to the Uetliberg, a mountain where the Zurich television tower is located. It was cold and grey: the thing about Switzerland climate is, it is not very regular. You may freeze your ass off during the springtime, and I’m usually too naive and spoiled by Dubai weather to pack any proper winter clothes.
The train goes all the way up to the mountains, passing all the Swiss little wooden houses and rides through the middle of the forest, making you feel like you were the Hogwart new joiner.
The city feels very cosy. This grey weather actually suits this feeling: you can see a warm light in the windows of the colorful houses. Gentleman in their big round hats sit in the teahouses and drink the hot tea. All the tiny streets go up and down, making you exercise your legs. The city is full of bicycles: this made me feel very impressed once trying to reach the top of another street going all the way up.
We went inside a small chocolate shop. Switzerland is famous for its chocolate, so you can find a fancy chocolate shop on every corner. The older elegant lady tried to explain me why the Swiss chocolate with some green liquor on the top is so special, and so worth its ridiculous price. As I couldn’t and didn’t really want to afford it, I tried to change the topic before she got too passionate. There was a photo of Leonardo di Caprio in the shop: the lady got very proud once asked about it and told me how Leonardo di Caprio came to her shop with his parents, and she tried to keep him forever, and he loved her chocolate. She made me smile.
The people in Switzerland seem relaxed. Everything seems a bit slow, people don’t run on the train station (well, except me) because the next train is going to be there in ten minutes. If you’re lost, the train station cleaners will explain you the way with their perfect English, looking happy about the fact they can help. It’s not the kind of smiley place: people are not going to smile at you everywhere you go, but there’s something poetic in it.
There is something in the city that is going to make you feel proud to say “I’m from Europe”. And as your Europe may not remind anything from what surrounds you there, it’s just nice to forget it sometimes and tire your legs in the place like that.