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  • Writer's pictureDeborah Kade

The birthday boy wanted wienerschnitzel

Today is Michael’s 65th birthday. Welcome to Medicare!!!!!!

The winner of the contest is my nephew, Kyle. He immediately guessed Michael wanted to eat wienerschnitzel at the Old Swiss House in Luzern. We have had this planned for weeks. Congratulations, Kyle. We had a wienerschnitzel guess but his was the most specific. Thanks to those whom participated. Some of the guesses were very creative. We laughed quite a bit today!

It wasn’t easy to eat at the Old Swiss House today as they only accept the Swiss QR code. We could have eaten outside but at the time there were a few sprinkles every few minutes so the restaurant decided not to serve outside today in case of rain.

The U.S. does not issue a QR code with the Covid card. It makes it difficult to travel outside the U.S., though. But, on the other hand, I’m happy my activities aren’t being tracked by the government.

The manager of the Swiss House told us to check across the street and get the 15 minute Covid test. This pharmacy did not do the test and we were advised to go to the train station where we first started our journey. At the train station pharmacy, we were given a paper issued from the government stating if we have been vaccinated with an EU approved vaccine, we could enter the restaurant.

Off we went back to the Old Swiss House. Due to this new mandate which only came out on Monday, there were only three people in this usually very popular and extremely crowded restaurant. One of the waitresses checked and read the paper over and over and over. She seated us, took our drink order and asked to see the paper again. She came back and told us we couldn’t be served because the restaurant could only accept the QR code.

Pia, the waitress we had the last time we were there on the 7th, said she would serve us outside. It was no problem for her.

Look at how much butter she started with and what she had left when she finished cooking.

The secret is using lots of butter!!! Yes, the wienerschnitzel and bread crumbs swan in butter. Also, you only turn the meat over once.

Michael ordered an amazing bottle of Swiss white from the Italian section of Switzerland. Castello Luigi- Bianco Del Ticino- Besazio. It had a fruity apple taste, at times. It paired so well with the wienerschnitzel and breadcrumb buttered noodles.

We had the same dessert as last time, sgroppino.

Pia then brought a birthday plate with chocolates, apple slices and a raspberry, and a warm mini butter bundt cake with a candle. She also included an Old Swiss House, which has been in existence since 1858, “much luck coin”.

It was a delightful birthday lunch!!!!!!!!

I know Michael would have been extremely disappointed if he didn’t have this special dish.

Thanks to Sharon and Bennett for sending the balloon and the box of goodies from Belgium. Surprised the Swiss allowed Belgium chocolate and biscuits into the country.

It had rained during the night but we only had sprinkles when we went down for breakfast. It is feels damp and extremely humid outside. The temperature will be around 72.

If you have been following along with the blog, you know we took the train from Interlaken West to Ost. We switched from a wide gauge train, higher speed, to a narrow gauge so we can climb through the mountains.

Fog is creeping along through the sides of the mountains and up through the valleys.

Reminds me of Carl Sandburg’s poem entitled “Fog”

The fog comes on little cat feet,

It sits looking over harbor and city

On silent haunches,

And then,

Moves on.

In this case it looks over the lakes and small villages.

The planes are flying from Meiringen today. Radar is spinning.

Meiringen is where Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty fight to the death and fall from the Reichenbach Falls.

It is also where meringues were first made. A housewife had all these egg whites left over so she created meringues. They were improved by an Italian chef named Gasparini between the end of the 17th century and the beginning of the 18th century.

Every grocery store, restaurant,and tea house features meringues.

In Brüning-Hasliberg, at the top of the mountain, the sun tries to peek through the clouds. This is a ski area.

In some sections, there is only one track so one of the trains needs to pull off and wait for the other to pass.

The train winds through the mountain passes. It also runs parallel to the lakes.

There is quite a bit of dairy farming in this region. Wonder if many young people will want to carry on with this occupation.

Since we have been here, we have seen people sunbathing and swimming in the lakes. Remember, this water is very very cold as some of the glacier waters feed into these lakes. This is why the lakes have this unique color. No one enjoying the parks either as we travel through the area. Not much activity today.


After having our two hour lunch, we walked around the Old Town section of Luzern.

The old town section has many buildings that are adorned with paintings.

Eduaard Renggli's 1928 painting of the biblical Feast of Canaan.

The blue shutters spell W-E-I-N-M-A-R-K-T

The hotel with the flags was established as a "temperance hotel" by the wives of businessmen who traveled to Luzern for work.

A Hugo Bachmann wall painting from 1956 tells the story of Weinmarkt Square, depicting the musicians and actors who performed here, with a fish monger looking on.

On the façade of the Müllersche Apotheke, "love sickness knows no cure".

The façade of today's Hotel des Balances identifies the building as a former guild hall. It also shows hunters and Justitia, the personification of the justice dispensed in the square in earlier times under a linden tree.

Gambrinus, the unofficial saint of beer brewing. Gambrinus is top and center , accompanied by monks and the elements below; four panels beneath the windows show Egyptians, Assyrians, Germans and Greeks making and enjoying a brew.

The Fischer-Stube façade is painted with a picture of the mills in action.

The umbrella is huge!

Gütsch is an Alemannic term meaning hill. You can see Luzern's Gütsch from the bridges across the River Reuss. The eye-catching Château Gütsch looks down over the city. Built in 1888 as a hotel, this Belle Époque chateau was inspired by Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria. Château Gütsch now is a restaurant and a hotel.

Dance of Death Bridge

This historic covered bridge contains a series of macabre paintings that communicate one thing: everyone dies.

From the outside, Lucerne’s Spreuer Bridge looks to be a peaceful old-world span, the kind where medieval lovers might have met on a warm spring day, but hanging beneath the covered roof are dozens of historic paintings of skeletons and reapers collecting souls and reminding travelers that every second is one closer to death.

The gable-roofed bridge was built in the 13th century to connect a group of mill buildings to the mainland. During its initial usage the bridge was unique in that the mill workers could simply dump their waste into the river since they were so far downstream. The wooden bridge survived for hundreds of years retaining its peaked medieval style.

Then in the mid-1600s it was decided that the bridge would be spruced up a bit and a project was spearheaded to create a series of artworks forming a Dance of Death cycle, also known as a “Danse Macabre” or “Totentanz” in German. The object of such works was to remind everyone that death comes for us all, whether old or young, rich or poor. In the end 67 separate works were painted in the rafters of the covered bridge each featuring at least one skeletal harbinger of death (more often a number of them) coming to drag people to the afterlife. Monks, knights, nuns, and beggars are all seen being taken by death no matter their life.

Walks along covered rustic bridges are often symbolic of peaceful times of beauty, relaxation, and simple living, but the Spreuer Bridge really makes sure that people know they need to enjoy it while it lasts, which probably won’t be that much longer no matter who you are.

The old walls of the city

The Chapel Bridge and the Water Tower

We stopped in the Jesuit Church to pray and light a candle for Michael's birthday.

There is always a chocolate or sweet shop close by to tempt you.

We had a wonderful time in Luzern celebrating Michael's birthday!!

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