DAY 35, JUNE 21
(MATT) Our plan had been to awaken early and to wait for the mail 'til about 10 a.m. (to see if Jon's letter supply multiplied again) but we awoke to really loud thunder around 8 a.m. and saw pouring rain outside so we rolled over and slept 'til 10 a.m. I cleaned up, went downstairs, and had a chance to talk to Mrs. Seiffert before the others arrived and she told me the short version of her story. I won't go into detail, but she and her brother knew Deitrich von Hildebrand and he encouraged them to go study in Salzburg where they did. Guess who was also studying there--Mr. Seiffert,. And the rest you can figure out for yourselves. The boys came downstairs shortly and we had an almost American breakfast of cereal, coffee, and danishes! Quite a treat.
We stayed and talked 'til 12 noon and after having been completely loaded up with food from Mrs. Seiffert, (two sandwiches, chips, powdered tea, cake, granola bars, Swiss chocolate, and a few other odds and ends) we thanked them profusely, and vowed to send them the best thank you card ever and were off again. We made an hour stop in a town called Waddenswill, just below Lake Zurich. This was the town my great, great grandfather and his son (Anton and Johan Kuhn) left from around 1895 to journey to the States. It was a beautiful little town with both lake and mountains-.-I don't know why they left in the first place. We made our way to the Catholic Church, found out where the cemetery was (I stole a page out of the phone book) and walked up the hill to the cemetery. We passed a hospital under construction by Kuhne Construction; that was odd. We found the cemetery after having asked a local boy the way in sign language (he figured it out when I made the cut throat sign.) Once there, we all scattered to look for a Kuhn. I eventually asked a gardener and he led me to Emil Kuhn (1903-1973.) I was satisfied at that (Chris and Sam thought it was a Protestant cemetery anyway because of the lack of crucifixes.)
We went back to the car where Jon was waiting for us and drove on toward the Jungfroujoch. We stopped at the lake (Zurich maybe?) and had a picnic with some of the Seiffert food. We made it to Interlaken but drove all the way to Stechelberg at the far end of the Lauterbrunnen Valley because we did not want to miss the lift up to Gimmelwald where we wanted to spend the night. We arrived in Stechelberg and I called a hostel we had read about, then bought one way tickets to Gimmelwald and rode up. It was pretty neat (the tickets were seven Swiss francs, $5.)
We had said a St. Joseph prayer for another day of good weather and as soon as we got on the lift the rain stopped and the clouds broke. Thank you, St. Joseph. The hostel was $7 a piece and could care less if you had sheets or not. We took a walk up the hill toward Murren. We said the rosary overlooking a awesome valley and walked up to meet Jon. Then, after looking at a new improved awesome view, we walked back to the hostel. We sat on the porch and listened to a girl from Chris' hometown talk for a while, then talked to Gayle, a dental hygienist who promised that we would have a flossing party at 10 p.m. but was busy hitting on some guy when the magical moment arrived.
We sat in the dining room regretting that Rick Steves didn't tell us that we could cook at this hostel and had a piece of beef jerky for dinner. Jon went upstairs while Sam and Chris played cards then checkers and I watched and wished I was old enough to play with them.
(SAM) I showed Chris the fast and furious game of Speed and like a good sport, he played the game. After a time we changed the name to slaughter. Chris challenged me to a final game with high stakes, a triangle of Tobler Swiss chocolate. Jon smiled and we read each other's mind. You see, Jon and I, like sneaky (censored) had raided the Tobler without the knowledge of our comrades. Jon knew I had a slightly nibbled triangle of Tobler in my pocket. So we handicapped Chris and he squeeked out a victory. All the kids in the room cheered and I relinquished my crown to him and to Matt's surprise, gave him his promised triangle of Tobler. Jon and I thought it was very funny, but they were not so amused. But we are all good sports even though we always cheat.
Chris is a glutten for punishment and he challenged me to a game of checkers. It started like any other average game in the usual way. The game ended in an unpresidented way, manner. No jumps, no kings, no nothing, a complete stalemate. I have never seen the like. Chris, your comments:
(CHRIS) Check you, pal!
(MATT) Then Sam and I did the "read your mind," card trick for an American guy and a German fella. Then Chris and Sam also went to bed while I talked to the American about the NOLS, (National Outdoor Leadership School) and I learned alot. The other guys went to some instructions as well. The nature of their lesson I am not able to reveal not being myself well versed in the happenings of co-ed dorms. Anyway, I had a very nice evening as his very cute girlfriend joined us and we talked for quite some time. The other guys all hated the hostel for reasons I have previously hinted at but cannot actually reveal. If you want to know the source of their hatred--because I will not tell you now--you must ask them. I went to bed around midnight only to discover that Jon had taken my bunk. I fumbled around in the dark and eventually found my bed and went to sleep.