It all started in Freiburg, Germany when my niece took us to a little botanical garden. The flowers are just starting to bloom and the sun felt so good after the rain we'd had the day before. But while we were walking around enjoying the tulips and azaleas, we heard a really strange sound coming from one of the ponds. At first, we thought there might be cats fighting or an injured animal in one of the bushes. As I walked down to investigate, the sound stopped. I waited. As it slowly began to start again, I realized it was frogs in the pond. Screaming German frogs. Never heard anything like them before.
Our second auditory surprise came when we were leaving our friends' house in Gebenstorf, Switzerland. We were in the car, climbing up a lovely green Swiss mountain (probably a hill by their standards) on a crumbly, single-lane gravel road when all of the sudden Mr. W's iPad turned itself on and started playing the Enya song "Far and Away." It was like it had hand-picked the perfect soundtrack to go with the mountain views. We cracked up. You can listen to the song here while you look at some of the pictures from that part of our drive...
As we drove from Gebenstorf to Lausanne, we decided to stop in Gruyere, because, why would we NOT take a tour of the Gruyere cheese factory and get free samples? Duh. We decided to check out the little town and castle while we were there and I immediately fell in love with the sound of cowbells clinking as the cows grazed in nearby grass. There's nothing like the sight of the Swiss alps and the sound of cowbells to make you want fondue for dinner. (Which, of course, we had our first night in Lausanne.) Here's a clip of my new bovine buddies:
While wandering around Lausanne, we were greeted by a huge pipe organ as soon as we entered the St. Francois Cathedral. Another treat for the ears. We were the only two in the church and it felt like we were being serenaded as we snapped pictures of the stained glass windows.
Now that we're back home, the sights and sounds aren't nearly as exciting. The loud hum of the shop vac. The angles and lines of new floor planks, spread all over the bedroom to acclimate to the house before they're installed. The whining of hungry cats. The new wall-mounted toilet, turned on its side resting in the middle of the living room carpet. The silence that settles in at night, begging us to get over our jet lag.
I miss the cows. And the cheese.