Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The final chapter, Switzerland.

Just a few last photos from our vacation. I promise, just a few!

Here is Hans pointing at ME and telling me that my vacation jinx gene is the reason behind our getting kicked off the train just a few miles short of our destination of Geneva. But what's more important is that in the lower left of this photo, you can see the Amy Butler messenger bag that's tethered to my carry on case. I'm so glad I made that bag! It worked out so well and I highly recommend it!

Here we are at our 2nd night in Geneva at the birthday boy's home (Hans' brother) in Geneva. Of course there is Hans on the left, to his left is Baby Brother, and then lots of family members.

Here is the very same dining area that appears in the above picture after the furniture had been removed for the big party. In the background is the new kitchen that includes a really neat counter top stove that works on some sort of magnetic concept and requires special pans. The control that lays on top of the stove looks like a metal hockey puck. The stove is rendered useless and child proof if the 'hockey puck' is removed.

A very important feature for a childless couple!

This is to the left of the dining room (photo below). It's 3 sliding glass doors that lead outside and this is one of the tents that was set up to make room for the guests. I believe over 80 people were invited.

Here I am in the aforementioned tent in the red satin dress that Hans gave me for Christmas. I can now vouch for Jessica McClintock's fashions. This dress was very well made and I thank God it didn't burst at the seams. I can't say the same for Victoria's Secret's bikini's however! A couple of years ago the chain that held the back and front of my bikini bottoms, broke! That suit hit the floor before my brain could even register that something was wrong! Luckily, I was still in the bathroom when it happened!

It was still a bit chilly so I wore a crocheted sweater (above) which I took off later.
What a fabulous buffet! One of Hans' younger female cousin's (behind me) expressed her interest in the lobster. We decided that it was best to not have a knock down drag out fight over the lobster, so as the mature one I let her have her fair share! However I made up for my generosity by getting two helpings of salmon which happens to be MY favorite.

Here I am minus the sweater but with Hans who caught hell for not showing up in a tux. He ended up borrowing a jacket to put over the long sleeved t-shirt that he wore. The invitation was in French but for some reason Hans didn't notice that formal wear was requested. I didn't care if he was dressed up or not, I still thought he was cute!

It's now midnight and here I am taking a picture of the cake (complete with flares!) and there's the Birthday Boy beside me getting ready to give his 50th birthday speech.

It certainly was a party to end all parties! Family and friends from all over the world were there to celebrate. Some I'd love to meet again and some that perhaps, maybe I wouldn't! One very beautiful Egyptian woman with a definite predator aura, stood on the sidelines, smoking her cigarette and sizing up all the men around her. I took note of that and tightened Hans choke chain.

At one point we were deep in conversation with someone when I noticed the crowd part like the red sea and suddenly a large boned woman plowed straight for us. I recognized her as the same woman who'd butted ahead of me in line at the buffet, knocked me aside like a flea, while demanding more veal from the server.
"HOW DO YOU KNOW HANS-PETER?" She boomed in Hans face and I hid behind him. Just so you know, everyone in Hans' family (his father and brothers) is named Hans. They go by their middle names but since there is no American version of Hans' middle name then he just goes by Hans. Anyway this big woman kept braying in Hans' face even though he'd held up his finger at her in a 'wait your turn' fashion. She scared me to death and I was suddenly reminded of my high school librarian who'd had the same effect on me. His name was Mr. Miller.

Finally Hans gave her his attention and told her that he was Hans-Peter's older brother.

"IS THIS YOUR WIFE?" She shouted, and Hans (who is not a dishonest person) lied and told her I was.

After she left and the earth stopped shaking we both looked at each other and said "Who the Hell was that?" It turns out that she's known Hans' brother for many years and she actually vacations with him and his partner quite frequently. As a matter of fact she'd been along on a sailing trip last year with both of Hans' brother's.

Baby Brother told us about it.

On this particular sailing trip, in addition to Hans' brothers and their partners, there were 2 other women who were going along. Somehow a third woman got thrown into the mix and everyone knows that 3 women together is a perfect recipe for disaster.

It was.

Once on board, the Booming Lady tried to boss everyone around, the ladies (even though they'd been warned in advance of the tight quarters and had promised to behave) fought like tigers over whose turn it was to sleep in the salon area as the boat only had 3 double berths, and finally at the end of the trip there was a huge blow up over a loaf of bread.

No one can blame me for that trip, I wasn't even there!

Guess who's coming to dinner.

This is Lake Geneva and I'm not sure if the duck in the bottom of the picture (who, as you can see, had a major case of tummy trouble) is the reincarnation of Don King, or perhaps a lady duck who's contemplating suing her hairdresser.

Here is Hans when we went bike riding along Lake Geneva. Those are snow covered Alps in the background. A lot nicer in person, believe me.

Here is Hans on our last day, playing the piano for us. It was a beautiful day and very relaxing after a whirl wind week.

After the party everything was put back into place and here I am in the dining area on our last night. As you can see, the Birthday Boy used the place mats that I made for him. I was relieved to see that they were just right!!


Angelia said...

What a great trip you had!!!! Thanks for sharing your pics!

Rach said...

Thought I'd introduce myself as I am officially stalking your blog now... I came across your link thru' angelia & baldman's respective pages and well, I've been stalking you since... The mats were indeed lovely on baby brother's table! Just right!

laura said...

Hey Rachel! Don't be shy, feel free to comment anytime!

Bald Man said...

Rachel.....shy....hmmm dont think I ever heard those used in the same sentence...

Enjoy the blog as always...