• Deborah Kade

Are there gnomes living in the moss covered trees around the Giessbach Falls?

September 4, 2019

I decided to take the boat by the Interlaken Ost train station and cruise Lake Brienz. My destination for the day was Giessbach Falls. This is a favorite place of mine.

I read an article on the gnomes of Zürich so I decided to see if there possibly could be gnomes living in the moss covered trees around the Giessbach Falls.

All around Switzerland one can find garden gnomes. They are supposed to bring good luck. These gnomes are different from the gnomes of Zürich, though.

Here is a little history about the gnomes of Zürich.

They've been called many things in recent months, but "gnomes" is one moniker for bankers - particularly Swiss ones - that has a long history, says the BBC's Chris Bowlby.

"There's been a lot of name calling when it comes to those who work in the world of finance recently, most of it unprintable.

But the current financial turmoil in Europe, as well as news that London's best bankers are considering moving to Switzerland to avoid stricter regulation and public hostility, has resurrected an ancient and intriguing phrase - the "gnomes of Zurich".

First coined by British politicians facing a currency crisis in the 1960's, the phrase has lurked ever since whenever speculators are suspected of destabilizing a country. But why gnomes? And why Zurich?

Forget kitschy garden ornaments. These gnomes emerged from medieval fascination with the secrets of wealth, especially gold, buried underground and mined by mysterious beings. Goethe writes about them in his epic Faust - ambiguous characters creating wealth which others, depending on their morals, use for good or evil.

So as the secretive world of Swiss banking took shape, centered on Zurich, and based on underground vaults with anonymous numbered accounts in a fiercely independent, mountainous country, you can see why the idea of gnomes sprang to mind."

After reading the article, I decided to check out Giessbach. It would be a perfect place to hide things in or under the moss covered trees.

Today, I actually had more fun photographing the moss than the waterfall as the sun was in the wrong place to get a good shot.

Picture was taken behind the waterfall.

Changed the speed

The fairy tale Grand Hotel Giessbach

An amazing amount of bees around these flowers.

This is a tall dill plant. My plants never get this size!

The scenery as seen from the boat.

Michael and I will be back to the falls in the next few weeks. More on the hotel next time.

So....what do you think about the gnomes?

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