InterRail 2010 – Part 14: Brig

brig switzerland

After having a quick stop in Nancy, I left France for the mountainous vistas of Switzerland.

 

I had a quick change of trains in Bern, but it was in the middle of the night, so I did not get to see anything there.

I was now in the latter half of the month, and wanted to get quickly down to Italy so that I would have time to explore before having to head back home.

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When I arrived in the small alpine town of Brig even later that night, it turned out that the next train to Italy would not get there before evening the next day, so I had no choice but to stay.

And I am glad I got that opportunity, because Brig is beautiful!

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I spent my day there relaxing, something that probably served me well before arriving in Italy.

After doing a bit of exploring and photography, I found a nice café where I sat down to eat and read for a while.

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As I was traveling with just a small backpack, I also had to find a place that could wash my dirty laundry.

I was given directions to some older women who ran a washery out of a cellar, and they took care of it for me.

This would be the last of three times I had to take care of that on my trip, having previously taken advantage of a laundromat in Amsterdam and hotel services in Newcastle.

 

While I was there, I discovered where Santa spends his days during the off-season.

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I also found it a bit amusing the this workout studio’s mascot was a weird red-spotted cow.

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When my time there was drawing closer, I picked up my backpack from the hotel I had stayed at, picked up my washed and dried clothes, and got a last good look at the amazing view.

Then I hopped on a train headed for Milan.

 

Ant-Men and The Wasps

ant-men and the wasps ant-man & wasp ants marvel

Back in April, I stated that I had written something about each Marvel movie that had been released since I started this blog, and that I would try to continue doing so.

But while I enjoyed their most recent film ‘Ant-Man and The Wasp’, I could not find much to say about it.

ant-man-and-the-wasp flying ants

While the film had a lot of very fun action-sequences that utilizes the heroes size-changing abilities in incredibly creative ways, I liked the heist-movie parts of the first Ant-Man film much more than the story of the second film.

 

And since that is pretty much all I can think of to say about the movie, I figured I would write a bit about ants and wasps.

Yeah.

 

Ants

insects-anthill

When I was (let’s say) six years old, I was out playing with some friends.

It was me, a neighbor-girl the same age as me, her older brother and one of his friends.

 

The older boys had found an upturned log and a large rock With a huge anthill in-between them, and they were jumping between the log and the rock.

Possibly in an attempt to impress the girl, or maybe just the older boys, I decided to join in.

One, or maybe more, tried to tell me that it was too far for me to jump, but I proudly insisted.

A second later I was up to my neck in biting ants.

 

I don’t remember entirely how I got home, but I imagine that the others just pushed me along.

One of my parents threw me in the shower to get rid of all the insects, who had gotten everywhere.

 

I never developed any strong phobia to bugs, but I do have a fear of heights.

Not sure if this is one of the causes.

 

Wasps

yellowjacket nest_in_ground wasp wasps

Wasps are my least favorite pollinators, with bumblebees being my favorites.

Wasps are often incredibly aggressive, and easily drawn in by sweets.

I have been chased inside by wasps multiple times this summer, simply for daring to bring soda or berries with me out to the veranda.

And the glass-recycling outside my local store is teaming with wasps, as a result of people not washing their jars before throwing them in there.

 

But I do not have as much of an issue with wasps as my mother does, as she had a similar type of experience with wasps as I had with ants.

When she was six she stepped into a ground wasp nest.

Similarly to me, she got them everywhere, but when she got home a shower was not enough to take care of the problem.

A doctor had to make a home-visit, and pull out each of the stingers, one by one.

 

She understandably does not care much for the creatures.

 

InterRail 2010 – Part 8: Stonehenge

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After arriving in England the first place I intended to visit was Salisbury in Wiltshire, to see the prehistoric monument located just outside the town.

 

Before taking the trip out to Stonehenge itself, I decided to take a look around Salisbury, and found their lovely cathedral.

 

Stonehenge was far enough away from Salisbury that there were shuttle buses going back and forth from there.

It was sort of a shock to me to see just how close Stonehenge is located to a fairly well-trafficked road, but it was far enough away for me to practically ignore it.

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When I and my fellow passengers stepped of the bus, we were greeted by a gaggle of wiccans, druids and pagans handing out pamphlets and picketing the tourism industry around Stonehenge.

The security and ticket takers seemed very annoyed by this.

 

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Once I got behind the fence, everything calmed down a bit.

But I did sort of see the point that the protesters were making, in that it seems wrong to me that Stonehenge is located behind a bunch of fences, and not free to be explored.

But if that were the case, I bet that the structure would have long since been divided up in thousands of souvenir pieces, scattered all over the world.

 

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Stonehenge, and other structures like it, has always fascinated me.

There is something about a lone man-made structure located in the middle of a beautiful natural environment that really speaks to me on a personal level.

So much so that I keep having the urge to create when I am out in nature.

 

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After I was done looking at the monument, I headed back to Salisbury with the shuttle bus.

And from there I hopped on a train to Cardiff, Wales!