24 June 2011
I woke up too early (this would turn out to be a recurring pattern) and went for a walk around the hotel.
I rejoined Piaw and Xiaoqin at breakfast. Piaw had shown Andreas (the proprietor at Hotel Rosenlaui) a copy of Independent Cycle Touring. The book contains a glowing review of Hotel Rosenlaui, for which Andreas was very pleased.
We left our bikes at Rosenlaui in order to spend a couple of days hiking near Lauterbrunnen. We packed up our things into the car and drove to Lauterbrunnen, with a quick stop at Reichenbach Falls.
At Lauterbrunnen, Staubbach Falls was flowing in full force, though a bit off to one side due to the wind. We walked to the vista point behind the waterfall and admired the view of the valley.
We bought lunch at a grocery store, and then I amused myself while Piaw and Xiaoqin went to see Trummelbach Falls (which I had previously seen, and didn't feel compelled to go visit again).
We took the cog railway to get up to Wengen, which is a little car-free town nestled on the hill above Lauterbrunnen on one side.
After checking in to the hotel, we took a little hike to the Staubbachbänkli, which has a nice vista point with views of the valley below.
I stopped by a store on the way back to pay some exorbitant amount of money for hiking socks. Dinner was at an Italian restaurant close to our hotel. At this and many other restaurants in Europe, we tried but failed to order hot water: the waiter would signal comprehension, but then would give us a look I interpreted as Hot water? Why would you want that?, and it would never arrive.
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