26.05.2015 - 26.05.2015
Today marks the half-way point of our trip and it is our first full day in Luzern. The forecast was for rain all day long, but fortunately meteorologists here are about as accurate as at home, because it has only rained a little bit today. In fact, we actually saw some sun by afternoon. So we did not have to alter our plans for the day at all.
We first had breakfast this morning at the hotel, as it is included here. There wasn't a whole lot to choose from but what they had was good. The only thing we really had specifically planned for today was a walking tour at 1pm so we decided to start the morning with some shopping. Switzerland is expensive so shopping is either a good or bad thing, depending on your point of view.
One thing Patti really wanted to buy was a cuckoo clock so we found a store that had a wide selection. Of course, being Switzerland, they were more expensive than expected. But Patti found a couple she really liked and we decided to look around some more so she could compare some prices and think about it. Our next stop was to find chocolate. There were a couple of stores we wanted to check out and we both bought chocolate at one of them. In fact, I am eating some now while I type this! Here is me by the macarron statute in front of the store where we bought our chocolate, and also another one of Patti in front of the store.
We then stopped for lunch at Manor restaurant which is on the top floor of a department store. As you might have guessed, this was a Rick Steves recommendation. It is a cafeteria-style place with reasonable (for Switzerland) prices. There was a lot to choose from and the food was good.
Then we headed to our free walking tour. On the way, we saw a really cool view of the mountains, with the clouds hanging in the valleys. It had just stopped raining. I think this picture actually captures it pretty well.
Our tour guide was a history major at a local university, and his English was perfect. Turns out he spent a year living in Michigan. He was really good. Here are some pictures from along the way. I really love the Lion statue.
Anyone who has been to Europe knows that occasionally you have to deal with beggars. Typically, those beggars are human. In Luzern, however, the beggars apparently are ducks. This little guy came right up to our group and walked around looking at us as if to say "don't you have food?"
Then we went back to the cuckoo clock store. Grandma Moore would be very proud that we were "be-backs" who actually went back! Over the course of the day, Patti had determined that she was getting a clock. Here is a picture of her contemplating her choice, and then one of the clock she actually bought (well, not that one because it was a display but you know what I mean). It is really cool and I think she is really going to be glad she got it, even if it did cost more than she originally wanted to pay. The cuckoo comes out every half hour and it plays a little song while a guy chops wood, people come out and dance on the balcony and the water wheel turns.
As is our usual habit, we are back in the hotel resting before dinner. Tomorrow we are going to Mt. Pilatus so that should be fun. Hopefully the weather holds out. I anticipate having some great pictures to share with you tomorrow.