One of my very favorite Parisians moved to Geneva this past year and I decided there was no way I could pass through Paris without taking the extra trek to see her. Plus, ever since seeing The Sound of Music as a child, I have wanted to see Switzerland. True, Geneva is almost in France. And even truer, The Sound of Music took place in Austria. But almost France is still technically in Switzerland, and for whatever reason, that movie made me want to go to Switzerland. Maybe it was because they fled there to be safe and there is that final scene where they go over those beautiful mountains. Or maybe it was just that my sense of geography was equally as bad as a child as it is as an adult. Either way, Switzerland has always beckoned as a country of sweeping mountain vistas, puffy clouds, and deep blue lakes.
I am pleased to say that at least the little corner where Geneva lies is indeed all of those things. Even though it rained most of the two days I was there, we still managed to walk around the center of old Geneva and along the banks of Lac Léman. We also seized a moment of sun to drive to the little medieval town of Yvoire (technically back in France, but no need for truth to impede my impression of Switzerland) where we walked along tiny streets bursting with bright flowers.
It was the colors I loved most, and they stand out startlingly against a backdrop of Swiss cleanliness. Brightly painted boats in clear blue green waters, or richly painted shutters on the houses that sit against lush green hills. Though I slept most of the train ride there, I rode back gaping out the window at the steep hills covered in brilliant sunflowers or fresh green vineyards. There is a lushness in this region, a saturated quality, and I tried to pick out some of the pictures that give a coloristic view of what I saw.