Mini-break in Lausanne: return to the magical city

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As I mentioned in my previous post, yesterday was a national holiday here in Switzerland. It’s known as “Ascension Day” and occurs 40 days after Easter (explains why it was on a Thursday rather than on a more convenient Monday or Friday). Martin needed to attend meetings in Lausanne this week so we decided to time it with the holiday and spend the day off in Lausanne. I caught the train to Lausanne later in the afternoon after my last German class.

The train journey from Bern to Lausanne is particularly beautiful. It takes you through picturesque countryside and farmland. There are only a couple tunnels on the route and the last tunnel before Lausanne opens up to reveal a gorgeous view of Lake Geneva (or Lake Léman as it is also called). The track follows along the lake until it reaches Lausanne. I sat there like the giddy tourist with my camera pressed against the window the entire journey.

Martin and I met up after his meetings at our hotel and then went to a small and very busy wine bar near our hotel. Being a very good planner, Martin had printed off the English menu for the restaurant where we had made a reservation for that evening. The food sounded amazing and I quickly chose my starter and main:

Starter: Noix de Saint-Jacques sautées et homard canadien, nage de crustacés, légumes de printemps et morilles (roasted scallops with Canadian lobster in crustacean sauce, spring vegetables and morels)

Main: Selle de veau rôtie, cassolette de morilles et asperges, gnocchi de pommes de terre et sauce porto (roasted saddle of veal with cassoulet of morels and asparagus, potato gnocchi and port wine jus)

I decided to keep my dessert options open.

We made our way over to the restaurant and gave the host our name. It was quickly apparent that there was an issue. Martin had printed off his reservation confirmation, but it turned out there was actually two Les Trois Rois in Switzerland. Our reservation was at Les Trois Rois in Basel and this Les Trois Rois (which is completely unrelated to the Basel Les Trois Rois) was completely booked for the evening.

My dreams of lobster and scallops and veal and gnocchi were quickly dashed. At this point I was starving, a little tipsy from our pre-dinner drinks and my feet were starting to hurt (I actually wore heals for the occasion). Defeated and a little embarrassed we made our way back to the hotel. I changed into flats and then we called up another one of the recommended restaurants from Martin’s colleague. I used my very rusty French to make a reservation for 9:00PM.

It wasn’t quite the romantic, fine dining experience we were hoping for, but it was quiet and friendly and available.

***

The next morning we made our way down to the lake and had brunch at our favourite creperie. The forecast was for cloud and rain, but it was thankfully the complete opposite. I still couldn’t convince Martin to get into a pedalo with me. He had his work laptop with him and was afraid to leave it with a stranger and also didn’t like the other option of taking it on board. He’s an IT person’s dream!

We spent a couple hours walking along the promenade and finished the day with two scoops of gelato. A perfect ending to a lovely mini-break!

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View from the train

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View from our hotel room at Agora Swiss Night

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All dressed up and nowhere to go

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Rain and clouds? I don’t think so!

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Creperie d’Ouchy – so delicious!

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Enjoying the sun, view and yummy crepes

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xx BHF

Holiday!

 

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It’s a holiday here tomorrow so Martin and I are spending tonight and tomorrow in Lausanne because we can’t get enough of this city. I will return to the blogging world on Friday.

xx BHF

All good things must come to an end.

Canal

Dusk on the canal – tranquillity epitomised [Warwickshire Ring – June 2013]

Today was the penultimate day of my German course. The past four weeks have flown by and it’s hard to believe that I’ll be able to sleep in again starting on Thursday. Yippeee! No, I’m actually quite sad that it’s already ending. I’ve met some really amazing people and it will be strange not seeing them every morning.

I’ve decided to hold off on registering for the 2nd part of the A1 course as I’ll be in London for a week in mid-June. I don’t think it’s a great idea to enrol in a course when I’ll only be able to attend 75% of the classes. My main buddy, Dr Cristina, is jumping ahead to A2 anyway.  She wants to get her  B1 qualification as soon as possible so she can get a job and start practicing medicine.

A few of us went out for lunch this afternoon and we exchanged phone numbers and added each other to Facebook so hopefully we’ll be able to keep in touch.

Alles Gute! Bis spätter!

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xx BHF

Fun with Fotor: Black & White

I’m busy sorting out a new series, so in the meantime I thought I’d share some of my photos from my travels. I love playing around with filters and effects. My favourite free website for this is Fotor. I initially used it to create collages, but it also allows you to add text as well as filters and other effects to your photos.

The photos below have a polaroid frame, with various filters. I’ve also added text. I hope you enjoy!

B&WGarden

B&WDubrovnik

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B&WFlorence

B&WPisa

B&WNottingHill

B&WTS

xx BHF

Banana Walnut Cupcakes with Cinnamon & Cream Cheese Frosting

banana cupcakesThis past weekend the sun finally came out to play, yay! It was a nice break from the last couple of weeks which offered up mainly clouds, and rain and heavy showers.

On Saturday Martin and I trekked out to Lidl for some cheap(er) food supplies and then walked into town for drinks and dinner. Sunday was shaping up to be a lazy catch-up day until we were invited to our friends’ house for an impromptu BBQ. Martin went into town to pick up some beers and I decided to whip up some mini-cupcakes to bring with us.

I already had all of the supplies needed for banana cake, so I used my mom’s banana bread recipe for the cake and topped them with a cinnamon and cream cheese frosting.

They went down a treat and I even had enough to bring into my German class the next day.

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banana cupcakes 001

 

{recipe after the jump}

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