03 August 2013

Back in Bollywood and other Swiss oddities

I just left India a little over a week ago. If asked, I would have told you that I left Bollywood behind. Apparently I was wrong. According to the Lonely Planet Guidebook to Switzerland, the Swiss Alps are a huge draw for Bollywood fans. You may wonder why. It's not to take a break from the intense heat of India, although the cool mountain air is refreshing; it's simply because scores of Bollywood films are shot in Switzerland because the mountainous regions of India are simply too dangerous. It was not unusual to see evidence of the draw this region has on Indian tourists. But it was definitely surprising!

Feeling peckish? No worries, vending machines are everywhere - just ready to provide you with a snack.

That doesn't seem to unusual, until you examine closer what all you can buy. The foods are definitely different than those back home.

But while you stood examining the contents of the vending machine, you may have just met the man/woman of your dreams. No worries, this machine carries condoms too. Oops, did the condoms fail? That's okay because look next to the condoms, pregnancy tests. One can never be too prepared! (Don't you just love the name of that pregnancy test?!?!!)

Most people head to the beach for sunbathing. But Switzerland is a landlocked country with no sand to be seen. The solution - just sunbathe in the snow! (Seriously, wear your sunblock or you could get really burnt!)

Little did you know, but the start of the movie Ice Age was 100% true! Walking through the ice palace you can see the unfortunate Scratch and his acorn.

Bern, the capital of Switzerland is know for it's bears. The bear is the symbol of the city and seen on the flag. But that's not enough. Live bears live in the city of Bern. They are not wandering free, instead they are ensconced in an enclosure next to the river. There are three bears to be seen.

The town of Meiringen claims to be the birthplace of meringues. They sell delicious meringues there, but I was more intrigued by another pastry: A Spitzwurm.

Sir. Arthur Conan Doyle visited Switzerland and loved the Reichenbachfalls area. As a result, he decided to set the demise of his famous detective, Sherlock Holmes there. Today this draws tourists to both the falls and nearby town of Meiringen.

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