Colourful visitors to warm your day

* Still catching up on old photos and stories from earlier in the year.

Walking to the laundry in the main farmhouse on one of my beloved free Fridays (I work Mon-Thurs), two unexpected but welcome guests called me closer.

It was January 22 and we’d had what was to be, so far, the most snow all winter earlier in the week. Because I leave for and return from work in darkness, patience was needed to snap this charming couple, who were taking it easy by the pool.

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Our friends stayed for a few days …

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Why does the woman always get the broom?!

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He did well, bringing an umbrella to avoid all that sun

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Maybe they’d been for a dip?

Thanks go to the neighbours, who have two small children, for inviting them over and making us all smile. Alas, the mild weather returned, and Mr and Mrs nourished the soil after nourishing our souls … a broom and umbrella the only reminders.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

February 22: A 20-minute walk for eggs

Inspiration came from … ummm … somewhere … on Friday and I baked a chocolate and raspberry cake. Then yesterday, I baked a loaf of bread. Stop me now! Both were incredibly easy and healthy, and turned out just like the photos in the recipes. They’ll be made again. (I should mention this baking/cooking thing is very unlike me. Very.)

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The bread and what’s left of the cake

Making the bread used up our last three eggs, so if we wanted a hearty Sunday breakfast, Leo suggested we walk to the nearest village to buy eggs from the honesty-box shop. It had stopped snowing but for some reason I really wasn’t interested in going for a walk – too cold, too lazy! But Leo’s coaxing did the trick and once we were outside, it was totally worth it.

I moved from Australia to Switzerland just over three years ago, and still find snow intriguing – especially the way it clings to things and the squeaky noise it makes when you walk through it. Hopefully the novelty never wears off (like it must have if you’re living in parts of the USA and Canada right now). There is a disclaimer, though – while snow can be fun, I really don’t do well in the cold.

When we arrived in the village, a chicken was cackling like an old woman; an infectious laugh and soon we couldn’t stop either. I could totally see her as a woman from the 70s, with a cigarette in one hand and a wine glass in the other, leaning suggestively over a table of hors d’oeuvres as she told the most hilaaaaarious story, darling. Unfortunately I couldn’t get a photo of her, as she was hiding under a small tree in her pen. Highlight of the day, after eggs on toast for breakfast of course!

It’s Sunday, so this pleasant 20-minute round trip is today’s fitfor15in15. I’ll raise more of a sweat during the week, promise. I hope you enjoy the photos.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

February 10: Beautiful day for a 90-minute walk

Despite still being around -2 degrees, the sun was out and it was time to walk! I may have walked the regular path, but there’s always something new to see, a subtle change, something unexpected … Today’s fitfor15in15 was magical!

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A clear and bright sunrise promised big things … and delivered

The birds seem to have come back in the past few days. I bought some bird food yesterday after collecting my work visa (yes! We celebrated last night with an Aperol Spritz. Yum), but there haven’t been any nibbles so far, despite seeing and hearing plenty of my favourite little sparrows.

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Come on birdies! Come and get it!

The path at the start of the walk had been churned up by a tractor, which made for a hard slog, but once out into the sunshine, it didn’t matter!

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A harder slog than normal

Then it was through the houses and up and over the hill in to Möriswil …

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A funny little cloud

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Another house has put out some food for the birds

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An icy, uphill path made for some interesting times

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These sheep have never been here before! What a great surprise!

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Friendly faces (and not so friendly-looking bums!)

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Their clanging neck bells made a stop-start melody

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This path leads to Möriswil, but the village in the distance is Säriswil

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People have put a lot of love and care into this fellow!

And again, Möriswil provided new things to see and experience …

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A lovely piece of nature’s art from a gutter

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Drainage art

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An old Stoeckli used for storage now. A family probably lived in it 100 years ago, or more. Our Stoeckli is over 150 years old

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One of the beautiful houses in the neighbouring village of Möriswil. I walk here often

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A heavy duty icicle at the little ponies’ house

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Smooth to the touch

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The horses weren’t interested in a pat today – they had fresh hay! Move on woman!

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Not many hours spent in this hammock at the moment! Can you spot the dog in the driveway?

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The trusty yellow Wanderweg signs

Then it was back into the forest and out the other side for a big surprise!

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This sign means trucks CAN’T go through here at any time. In Australia, a slash through the middle means you can’t, but here, just the red ring means no permission. “Kein Winterdienst” means the road isn’t serviced/maintained in winter

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Walking through snow like this reminded me of walking barefoot through soft sand. Hard going!

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Someone’s been wanderwegging through the fields!

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I jogged through the colder, shaded sections

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Straight and true

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Patterns

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Unfortunately, the trampoline had a private sign on it. I was keen for a bounce!

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A misty Alpine outline

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Talk about getting a surprise! This skier came out of nowhere. I’d never seen anyone skiing around here before! It’s farmland!

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Peter stopped for a photo and we talked for a while. He’s lived in this area his entire 67 years, and had been exercising/skiing for two hours when we met

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Off he goes. Thanks for the chat!

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Bye bye Peter! Would have been lovely, looking at the misty Alps the whole way home to his village

I did my best impersonation of a first-time roller skater on a frozen section of path, and almost fell over from the shock (and laughing at what it must have looked like!). All part of the winter fun. Then it was home to do some work.

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Achtung! I nearly came a cropper on this icy section. It would have been hilarious to watch as I over-corrected myself for about five seconds

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I love the contrast between all the colours. So fresh and clean, you can almost smell it

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The final stretch home

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Patches where no snow goes

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Hey! Another snowman

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A little less elaborate, but still just as sweet

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Back home. There was a flower garden in there a few months ago. Who walked through it?

Have you been for a walk in your neighbourhood recently? You might think it’s boring and you’ve seen it all before, but it’s an ever-changing experience. You never know what you might see or who you might meet – I wouldn’t have seen the sheep and met a true local today if I’d stayed at home. Go on … go for a wander.

Wishing you a wonderful day.