Julie and I finally had to make the decision we knew was coming; we just did not want to admit it. We canceled our plans to head back to the US. We probably could have physically made the trip. United Airlines has been fabulous about rescheduling the flights, and after a couple of hours on the phone with them about a week and a half ago, we had it all figured out. We were flying from Zürich to Munich, Munich to New Jersey, and then New Jersey to Indianapolis. The biggest problem with those flights was the tight time frame. If any of the flights were delayed more than 1/2 an hour, we were going to be spending at least one night, probably more in an airport.
What finally made the decision, though were my parents. Dad quit seeing patients a week or two before the first cases hit Southern Indiana. He dodged a bullet, being a Dr, and also in his 80’s. Not a good combination to see his next birthday. With our lifestyle, here in Switzerland, the most likely time for us to catch the virus was on one of the flights. Then we had to spend the next two weeks in isolation with my parents. Well, I had to, Julie would have actually come back to Switzerland before the isolation period was up.
We are going to miss seeing family and friends, but the risks outweigh any benefits. So we are staying put. Kind of…..
Switzerland is in Stage 2 of the Re-Opening. That means you can do some travel within the country. All of the transportation schedules are back to normal. So we are going to spend the last weekend in Mai, in the city of Bern. Bern is the capital of Switzerland. It is an absolutely beautiful city. Kaylee and I went there in January, but I am looking forward to going back. I am really hoping we can see the Bern Bears now!
We went out to dinner for the first time in three months this past week. Some people have already seen this video, but I think it is really neat, so I am re-posting it. This video was taken in the middle of one of the bridges over the Limatt. It is in between three of the major churches in Zürich; the Grossmünster, the Fraumünster, and St Peter Pfarrhaus. I have talked before about the church bells. I do not think you have to be religious to appreciate these!
It was great getting out of the house for something other than going to the grocery store, or exercise. It was even nicer to still be recognized when we walked into the place. Julie and I were pretty impressed with the steps they are taking to try and keep people safe. Close to 1/2 the tables have been removed, and put outside. Between every table is a big piece of plexiglass, so even though you are separated, you still feel like you are close together. The biggest benefit, is with some of the tables gone, you can actually scoot back from the table a little! Julie and I always get seated at the “couples” table, and learned there is a wing that comes out on the table. I actually liked it a LOT better because there was soom room. The wine didn’t have to be sitting in the window sill, and we didn’t have to worry about accidentally knocking something over. 🙂
I learned this morning, that the virus has also impacted some of our plans for July. A group of teachers and students from my old school WERE going to be touring Europe, and Julie and I were going to visit them in Germany. I learned today that trip has been pushed back. Maybe they will be able to come next year.
Not much else to report here. We did drop off the paperwork to renew our visas for another year. In some ways you just have to love the libertarian style government. Our Visas are good for three years, at which time they can be extended for another three years. However, for some reason, I think just because they can charge us, the government also requires us to renew our visas every 12 months. The strangest part, is the renewal costs MORE than getting the original visa. All we have to do to renew is sign a piece of paper, and provide a copy of our passport. You do not even have to renew in person! The city will simply send us a bill.