Monday, December 31, 2007

Snowshoeing around the Weissenstein

We gave ourselves snowshoes for Christmas and set out today to break them in and give them a try. We didn't want to do anything too strenuous or tricky on our first day on snow shoes, so we did an easy tour around starting at Weissenstein.

After taking the chairlift up, we set off across in the direction of Unterer Weissenstein and Hasenmatt. We did a bit of easy, pre-packed snow and a bit of fresh snow.

Total time was about 3 hours, including lunch. We didn't do too much height change. But I'm sure there will be sore muscles tomorrow. :-)

Friday, December 21, 2007

Christmas trip: Aachen and Wegberg

We spent a couple days with Andreas and Elke in Aachen and then headed up to Wegberg to spend Christmas with Andrea's family.

Back to Basel on the 28th.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Weekendtrip to Paris

We had to try the new TGV connection from Basel to Paris ( 3 1/2 hours) and went to visit Christina and Thomas for the weekend.

Friday night was spent at a late, long dinner at Brasserie Flo. We've been to a Brasserie Flo in Nice together and Greg has been to one in the airport (CDG). The place was a complete madhouse on a Friday night, but the food was good and there's something very appropriate about eating in a madhouse in Paris. :-)

Saturday, after a sleep-in and nice breakfast, Christina and us went for a long, random wander through town, from their place close to the Gare de l'Est, via Place de la Republic, down Rue du Temple to the Hotel de Ville, spent some time in the kitchen section in the BHV department store, had a warm drink opposite the Hotel de Ville, then went across the Ile de la Cite, past Notre Dame, via Saint Michel to the Jardin du Luxembourg, found a Christmas Market near Saint Sulpice, had a crepe/galette, and finally took the metro from Mabillon back to their place. It was rather cold, but beautifully sunny and clear, a great winter walk.
After a rest, we went all together shopping for dinner, Fondue Bourguignonne (very nice! Christina made a very nice sauce bernaise to accompany), and played games and drank wine till late....

On Sunday, again cold but sunny, the four of us took the metro to Saint Denis for a visit of the Basilique Saint-Denis, one of the first major structure partially built in the Gothic style. It's big, and high, and wide, and has lots of colorful glas windows. Great. Close by was a big open-air as well as closed market, one of those big, crowded, loud, crazy, random markets, just great...:-)
After a metro trip back to the Place de Clichy we walked through Montmartre, had a late lunch and warm-up at a small corner cafe, walked up to Sacre Coeur, down on the other side, and being all frozen through took the metro back. After a short rest and cup of tea, we packed up, went to the station and caught the TGV back to Basel.

Always crowds on the steps of Sacre Coeur...

All in all a very nice weekend. We'll come back, and next time we'll try (again) to get a table at Spring. :-)