Tuesday, June 16, 2009

H & P Do Europe Via Surfing (Post 3 of 3)

The next morning we were off again, this time headed to ZURICH. The drive through Germany was gorgeous. We were fortunate enough to take mainly back roads through the countryside in order to get a better feel for each region (and avoid the toll!).

This also gave Phillip an opportunity to see how other countries and regions maintain their vineyards. The weather was great, just above 50 F, and so we enjoyed a picnic lunch at Lake Bodensee.

We arrived in Zurich in the nick of time. After a day of driving we managed to find our host’s home rather easily. We were warmly welcomed by Rahel and Urs, a very friendly and accommodating couple in their late twenties who’d hosted many-a-couch-surfer in the past. They seemed very excited about our stay.

We discovered Zurich to be, by far, the cleanest city of our tour. There was literally no trash on the street: “ziltch in Zurich. It was a little too clean for us we decided, but an interesting experience nonetheless. The city is both exciting and beautiful and I’d love to return during the summer to see what it’s like when it’s warmer! We shared a lovely dinner of pasta and vegetables with our hosts along with a bottle of wine that Phillip brought.

Our stay in Zurich was short and sweet. The next day we were back in the car and headed to AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France, to visit Phillip’s friend from college, Tristan, and Tristan’s French girlfriend Marie. Aix is where I'll be headed in August for grad school btw. We stayed with them for two days which was a nice change of pace giving us time to take things in.

The weather in Aix was great and everything was beautiful. During the day we went hiking and enjoyed a picnic on Mont Saint-Victoire which was made famous by impressionist painter Paul Cezanne. Then we walked around the cliffs at the beach.

We had a wonderful time visiting Tristan and Marie. Overall, our trip was thoroughly enjoyable and full of adventure! We had a great time, got lost here and there, and made some friends along the way. We both highly recommend couch-surfing (couchsurfing.com) and Weiner Schnitzel (see below for recipe).

(To make Weiner Schnitzel: pound thin slices of veal (2 or so per person) until they are paper thin; coat the veal in flour, followed by egg batter and finally dip the egged veal in a bowl of semmel brosel, (bread crumb sprinkles). Place the breaded strips in to a frying pan bubbling with hot butter. Cooking with butter elevates the meat so that it doesn’t burn too quickly in the pan. After a few minutes of cooking the meat should fry into an even brown color. This dish is great to eat with potatoes and zucchini! Enjoy!)

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