When a friend calls you up to say,
"Hey Kelly, do you want to go to an Alpine cow festival this weekend?"
the appropriate response is a smile and a firm
A Swiss tradition, the Alpine Descent of the Cows takes place every September. After spending the summer grazing in the mountains, they return home amidst pomp and circumstance to await the winter. Decorated with flowers, flags, and really large, loud bells, they march through town as the crowd looks on.
While we stood around in the rain awaiting the cows' arrival, we were enticed by the sizzle and aroma of the grill coming from one of the food tents. We decided to investigate.
Bread drenched in melted cheese, sizzling bratwurst, large chunks of spice cake, apple wine, bowls (not sure why bowls and not mugs) of Swiss coffee...
After the cows went home, we headed back into Luzern, a fabulous city about 30 minutes southwest of Zug. We stepped off the train only to enter into another celebration. We couldn't figure out why everyone was gathered on platform 14 with free coffee and pastries. There was even a small band complete with bow ties and cummerbunds.
Eventually we discovered that the Swiss take their trains as seriously as they take their cows. Turns out that they were unveiling a new train, and they literally laid out the red carpet for it.
The rest of the day was spent with friends and fun in Luzern. It was late afternoon by this point, and since stores close at 4:00 on Saturdays (grrr) I was only able to explore one store before they all closed. But we did get to enjoy a cup of coffee in a great little cafe, I successfully ordered a glass of wine in verrry slow German (and understood what he asked me about it...woohoo!), and had a great time with friends!
Despite the rain, Luzern was awesome.
Kelly is an American teacher living in Switzerland and enjoying everything the country has to offer.