Round trip to Murzelen

IMG_5342Have you ever made plans to go for a long walk, somewhere spectacular, which involves getting in the car, and at the last minute think why waste time in the car when you can just start walking from your front door instead?

Leo and I had grand plans recently to go walking close to Spiez, on the Lake of Thun, doing a four-hour circular wanderweg. Spiez is probably only 45 minutes away in the car, but the whole thought of wasting 45 minutes of glorious sunshine sitting in a car put us off enough to search for a plan B. And luckily, where we live, there is always a plan B.

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Walking in Wohlen

DSC00270We had a public holiday on May 5 and the sun was out, so Leo and I took a short wander in Wohlen before joining The Usual Suspects at Liliane and Rene’s apartment for an early dinner.

Magnificent day, one of the few sunny days we’ve had in May (why so much rain?! My garden! Ugh!) and it was nice to put the walking shoes on again. Our wanderwegs have been missed!

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Walking a new path with surprises

Yesterday, we ventured from our new home to a part of Wohlen we’ve never seen before. Well, we’ve seen it from a distance, but never walked through it.

The weather was crazy-amazing sunny and the path threw up plenty of surprises!

The shepherd and his flock have been sporadic visitors – one year they were in the field right next to our house. The sheep knew to scratch at the snow to find the grass underneath, so all I could hear was constant neck bells clanging, munching and scratching. Very cool.

Last year, there was a tiny flock nearby, but it wasn’t the same shepherd. Here’s that post from February last year – look at the difference in the weather!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

Oh and I forgot this photo! Home to the narcissus and more sheep yeah, but also a well-deserved beer in the sun! Tee hee!


Tahdah! Back from box hell!

Greetings readers, and apologies for being AWOL for so long. For the past two weeks, we’ve had no internet at home which made it less distracting for packing boxes and dismantling furniture and unpacking boxes and assembling furniture! Box hell was relatively brief. It feels like IKEA hell lasted longer.

Very happy to be back blogging again. But before I show any photos of the new place, I have a stockpile of January photos to show you first!

Leo’s best friend Dani and his girlfriend Claudia came to see us one last time in the Stöckli. (We went walking on New Year’s Day with them in 2015). This time, Dani had the flu so didn’t join us outdoors, and I forgot to take photos of the scrumdiddeliumptious fondue we made. But here we are on the road …


Crystal clear day for walking


Leo and Claudia in Möriswil


Icing on the logs


Homeward bound. Claudia’s toes were frozen


Blue skies, following me … Nothing but blue skies

Now that we have internet access, I’ll keep this short and write again soon.

And I’ll leave you with this cat who sits every day in the window of a travel agency near where I work.


How much is that kitty in the window, the one with the elephants as friends?

Wishing you a wonderful day.

November 6-8: Weekend wrap


When the solar panels heat up, she sways her hips, with her arms going in the opposite direction. She moved this weekend. Woo hoo! Warm sun!

It was a very social and outdoorsy kind of weekend. Unseasonally warm weather has lulled us into a false sense of hope that we’re heading into summer rather than winter. What glorious temperatures we’ve had for three days!

Friday morning, I went to work at the dojo and now have a lot on my plate with some additional things to do. Not sure how this is going to pan out as I can’t do everything needed to be done just on Fridays, so will have to work at home at nights, after work!! Hmmm … not so sure this is going to work out well. By the end of the year, a decision will have to be made!

Friday afternoon, Iva and I went to visit our friend Kanjana who had a baby boy, Alessio, one month ago. He’s gorgeous, Kanjana is enjoying being a mum, and we had fun ‘falling asleep’ with Alessio on the couch.


Saturday morning was spent in the garden, pruning and tidying, and then BAM! These little fellows (below) came out of nowhere! I think they might be Soay Sheep? We have no idea where they’ve come from, but they have ear tags, so they’re a known quantity. They’ve never been to our place before and they’re welcome to come back anytime. Very timid, happy to move along together, not worried about us standing around gawping at their sheepy fur and goaty heads. An hour after they left, three came back into the garden, closer to our house. Such a nice surprise.

It was a glorious day but we had to leave the garden and blue skies to jump in the car to drive two hours to near Zürich for a combined birthday party for Leo’s sister and nephew. A quick stop at the shops, where I saw (but didn’t try) these cute bread figures, called Grittibänz mit Branchli (has something to do with 6 December and St. Nicholas. Gritten means spread legs, which is also a saying for old people, and Bänz is a short version of Benedict, who also has a relationship to St Nicholas. Mit Branchli just means its with this certain brand of chocolate called Branchli, a special addition for what is normally a plain figure with sultana face features. They’re baked from around the start of November until the end of December). Then the frivolity with the family began. Arrived home about midnight.


Today, the sun was still shining, with temperatures around 17 degrees, so we walked one of our favourite walks to Aarberg. We did this walk in reverse in March, when we met the lovely dog Luna. This time we walked from home and caught the bus back. Glorious! My hip gave out on the walk from the bus to our house – couldn’t bend it properly so had to walk with a peg leg to get up the hill. Not good. But the views were.


Wishing you a wonderful day.

November 1-3: No!vember

How’s this for a plan … we change the name of this month to No!vember, because no one can believe another year is almost gone. No! No!vember!

The fog is thick and heavy in the mornings, and the walk home at night is dark. There are no street lights for 70% of my walk from the bus, and the path by the little stream is kinda spooky in the dark. When I use my phone as a flashlight, the fence post shadows look like they walk towards me as I walk towards them … weird and slightly off-putting … *brrrr*

It’s going to be interesting walking in winter, but for now I’m enjoying it – so much scenic variety! Plus I feel like I’m doing a little bit of fitfor15in15 each day still. The walk home is a nice decompression after the day too, once I get over the spookiness of the situation.


Cloudy layers on our Sunday walk around “the block”. It felt like 1000 people also had the same idea – soak up that sun!


Can you see the Alps? This is the path by the stream. Fine in the morning, or on an afternoon like this, but scary dark at night!


Daisies, sugar beets and fog

Do you feel like shouting No! in No!vember?! I don’t think I’m the only one who can’t believe it’s only blah blah many weeks until Christmas and all that jazz!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

This is my 250th blog post. Should be more (that was a shocking effort in October!) but yay anyway!

October 1: Taking the bad with the good

Well, well, well, it’s been a long time coming! Today, I donned my glad rags and went to my job. Even though it was the first official day, it didn’t really feel like it, because I’ve been going to the office, on and off, for the past three weeks to do the handover. But today, it was official.

Luckily, I can catch the bus from the closer bus stop at the right time in the morning. After walking on the road, past the flower field, I walk down the little path to the right of the cows, along a stream and then through some houses. Takes about 12 minutes. Then it’s about 20 minutes on the bus and a 30-second walk to the office.


Got my work face on as I walk to the bus … our little house in the background


A grey day …


The path past the cows

My direct colleagues total four. The group is small, but good fun, and it’s a very relaxed environment. We work in an old house, and share the first floor with another climate change organisation. On the ground floor there’s another. I think I’m going to be very happy there, once I get my head around all the scientific words!

I haven’t ridden the Töffli much since I had the chest infection and I don’t think I’ll end up riding it to work much. Maybe a few times while the weather’s still ok, but definitely not in winter. So there’ll be at least 25 minutes of exercise each day walking to and from the bus. I know I said I wouldn’t count walking to the bus as part of fitfor15in15!! Fingers crossed, I get into a good routine again which includes some morning exercise. Still getting used to getting out of bed so early! Ahahaha 🙂


At the flower field, taken on the walk home. Recently, I bought a butternut pumpkin from here and made a great soup. Love the little weird ones, but they’re not for eating, just decoration


A good-looking weed


My Buddy … the Holly (groan!), next to our house, with the garage in the background

So, that was the good news …

And now for the bad news …

The property is pretty much sold. Liliane told us a few days ago. Our time in the Stöckli ends about April next year, if not earlier. Rene and Liliane have sold to a group of tradespeople, who are all friends, and they’ll do the renovations and upgrades themselves – there’s a builder, a roofer, a tiler, someone who does the floors and so on. It’s a dream community and they’ve scored themselves a great deal. I just wish we’d had the money to buy it all, so we could continue on in our blissful little house, surrounded by our blissful forest and grass and fields and cows and and and …

We’ll try to find another place in this area, but I think we’ll have trouble trying to compete with what we’ve had! I’ve been here nearly four years, and Leo for about 13. He’s not a happy camper. I’m happy for Rene and Liliane, but it’s hard not to be a bit sad too!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

September 20-26: Barcel-ohhhhhhh-na!

Once again, apologies to my (most likely two!) remaining readers who’ve put up with these long absences.

We had a great time in Barcelona, and rather than bombard you with a week’s worth of photos, I thought I’d just add in a few Instagram photos I posted (@angebella72).

Barcelona is made for walking … we racked up the kilometres to the point where we wished we’d booked in a massage at the end of the week to relieve the sore calf muscles. We also did a little bit of shopping … well, ok, I did. Two new dresses, two new jumpers, a pair of pants and a scarf practically leapt (leaped?) into my suitcase. Leaped, I tell you. Of course, excuses were made … love that colour, perfect for winter and of course the best one … perfect for WORK!

We did the red bus tour as well and that was a great way to see so much of the city in one hit. Highly recommend that in most cities, actually. I could definitely live in Barcelona, and with my new love for Sicily, I think our holidays for the next few years might be sorted. Or maybe we could just live there?! The food, the weather, the people, the … vibe?!

Ok, without any more waffle, here are the photos.


Day 1: Hanging around by the water and the Olympic harbour


Day 2: Sagrada Familia, more beach and beers


Day 3: Bus tour took us to Park Güell and Montjuic then we wandered around the food markets and watched a tightrope walker at the beach on the walk home


Day 4: More beach and walking, then a festival with our Camino friend Gemma, followed by fireworks


Day 5: Last day – shopping, Ramblas Poble Nou, lazed on the beach, went to a food festival at Plaza Espanya and re-did a beer moment from 2011

Had to add this one in ... churros (long skinny donuts) dunked in hot chocolate - I could live on them!

Had to add this one in … churros (long skinny donuts) dunked in hot chocolate – I could live on them!


Sunrise at the airport as we waited to board to come home. We left sunshine for fog!

Wishing you a wonderful day.

September 2-20: Oops … sorry about that!

Iiiiiiiii’m baaaaaaack …

It’s been a mental few weeks, and to top it off I had a chest infection which made me cough like a coal miner and sweat like a piggie. But I’ve almost kicked it to the curb, and am ready to, finally, write about what’s been happening.

Once I’ve written it all out, it will feel quite boring, I’m sure! But the best piece of news is …

Drumroll …

As of October 1, I will officially be the Communications and Project Officer for PAGES, an organisation which disseminates scientific data/research/reports on past global (climate) change. This was the interview I had on September 1. I found out I got the job on September 7.

The office is in Bern city, a convenient walk then bus ride away. I’ve actually been working there quite a bit in the past few weeks, doing the handover. The previous employee had her last day on Thursday and will work externally from Norway until the end of the year. This means I won’t be thrown into the fire from the outset, which is wonderful – knowing she will be there to pass on all her knowledge over the next few months is such a relief. There are only five people working for PAGES, so everyone has a wealth of information stored in their heads. Here’s a link to the website if you fancy a read …

I’ve also been writing the stories for my friend’s magazine, which was great except I was sick, then all of a sudden I didn’t have enough time. One story worked out really well, but I failed to get an interview for another story so had to change the concept a bit, and then – bless – my friend said I didn’t have to do the final story as it wasn’t coming together like I’d hoped and we agreed it wasn’t a story as such anymore.

Plus, I was working at the karate clothing website at the same time too. So it was a busy period. I hope the cough goes away soon; Leo has had an earful of it, and so have I. Juggling three jobs while hacking away was rather unpleasant. Going from minimal work to too much was also a challenge!

The other exciting news is … we’re off to Barcelona for six nights … tonight!! We won’t be going back to Australia at Christmas, because of the new job, so decided to have a quick one-week trip before I start officially. We’d thought about Iceland or the Jurassic (south) coast of England, but the weather didn’t look great, so we opted for sunshine and sangria instead. Really looking forward to eating loads of patatas bravas and maybe even having a swim in the ocean.

Rene lost his driver’s licence so has given me the keys to his car and taken back the keys to the Töffli. I think I actually got the chest infection from riding the Töffli in the early mornings to Maru Dojo, just after it turned cool very quickly. The car isn’t as easy to park as the bike, but it does mean I’m able to do a bit more with four wheels as opposed to two … and it’s dry and warm inside! Thank you, Rene.

So, time to get moving. I’ve packed my silver carry-on suitcase, which has one side empty, with enough for the week and more. See previous packing efforts here, here and here … I’ve taken the black and white heart dress; the black jacket; a (new) pink cardigan; the Japanese print skirt; a pair of mushroom coloured shorts; a pair of jeans; black belt; red, black and (new) pink t-shirts; two singlet tops; two scarves; a (new) denim blue thin poncho; bikini; minimal jewellery; black handbag; spotty green cap; umbrella; sandals; leather sneakers for walking; ballet flats; underwear and socks; mini iPad and iPhone. I’m excited to have these new clothes too!

Wishing you a wonderful week! I’ll write more when I’m back from Barcelona. Adios Amigos!


My not impressed, sick face


Flowers Leo bought me when we found out I got the job!


Liliane’s blooming marvellous roses


Me feeling happy about my flat tummy

Covered in dirt after doing the mowing

Covered in dirt after doing the mowing


Lovely clear Sunday walk to the flower field


Saw a cat in the dying sunflower field


Leo taking photos in the flower field. We bought pink lilies and some asters


Funny little pumpkins to buy, for autumnal decorating!

August 28-31: Last of the summer sun

Have been very lazy with the blog recently! Got to get back into a rhythm soon!

The last of the summer sun blessed us all weekend, which was fabulous! A last lie on the sun lounge, the last swim. I say last, but maybe we’ll have some ok weather again, just not at the moment!

Friday, I worked, then had a quick beer at Cafe Pyrennes with Pastora – we hadn’t been there for more than a month! Then Leo and I had dinner in Uetligen with Liliane, Rene, Lotti and Fritz.

Saturday morning Leo and I went for a five-hour walk, which I’ve calculated would cover my 15 minutes a day for a few weeks! Doesn’t work like that? Oh, ok then …

We walked to a village called Schupfen and home again, on a slightly different path. Then we had a barbecue with Liliane, Rene, Lotti and Fritz for dinner and enjoyed the full moon. Poor Liliane was bitten on the lip by a wasp (we’ve had plague proportions this year), and ended up going to emergency on Sunday morning because the left side of her face swelled overnight. Poor thing.

Sunday we were very lazy, watching episodes of an Australian series called “House Husbands” and then Liliane and Rene came over for an early dinner.

Monday I spent at home, enjoying the last warm sunny day, with a swim and reading by the pool. Liliane cooked too much dinner, so we joined them again!

Wishing you a wonderful day.