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tram in Lugano.JPG (183495 bytes)

Lugano.JPG (171619 bytes)






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Heading up the trams at St. Moritz toward our final destination  - Piz Nair.  Some say it is the " Top of the World".  Anyone queasy about heights should stay away from Piz Nair.  The lift drops us at a small Chalet 10,000 feet up in the Alps. From here I can see back to Italy to the south, Austria to the east, France to the west as well as into the heart of Switzerland. 

From Piz Nair, on a clear day I can see the tops of some of the highest mountains in the Alps.  Looking out across the Alp the Matterhorn juts its mighty face up to the sky, defying anyone to climb it. Just above Aryn's head, in the picture at the top of this column, is The Matterhorn.

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Pam tries to keep warm at 10,000 feet.JPG (145358 bytes)


Ian & Aryn in snow.JPG (79524 bytes)


Ian & Aryn play Piz Nair.JPG (114542 bytes)


restaurant Piz Nair.JPG (129004 bytes)


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top of the pass.JPG (130821 bytes)We venture out on a day trip from Lugano ( pictured on the left) to St. Moritz. Lugano is a beautiful town on the banks of  Lake Lugano just 20 minutes over the Italian - Swiss border.  To the side of our hotel was a tram that ran to the top of the mountain behind the hotel.

 The drive from Lugano to St. Moritz brings us back across a border into Italy as we head northeast.  Again, the small villages and streets along the lake are picturesque as any postcard.  The drive to St. Moritz is supposed to be around two and one-half hours; that is unless two large trucks meet in a narrow street .  Ours was a city bus meeting a truck carrying a large piece of granite to be made into 30-40 kitchen counters.  After a long discussion between the two drivers in the middle of the narrow street the truck driver gives the right of way to the public bus.  The drive is about 150 km.  About 70 km through lowlands comes your first clear view of the Alps.  First impression of the Alps is of this mountain range coming out of the ground nearly touching the sky.  Up and up it goes at a staggering rate. It seems even the snow has a hard time holding onto its sides yet is is still covered with the white crystals here in early October. 

The car climbs through Italy past marble and The Alps rise up.JPG (131412 bytes)granite factories over a pass and back into Switzerland.  The change is dramatic.  Suddenly the architecture changes to Swiss and Austrian farming community with slate roofs and cows in the pastures.  I finally reach St. Moritz after meandering back though villages along clear glass lakes reflecting the snow filled Alps. I swear the scenery has been created just for me, or, for some Hollywood movie. 

Nothing could be this serene and peaceful. I keep saying this to myself, as I snap picture after picture until I find the next bend in the road and the next calm lake scene.  I find myself wishing for more film, and wondering whether I should have saved some pictures from the last ten photos I took atyou_can_see_Heidi.jpg (133293 bytes) the last turn in the road. All too soon St. Moritz appears ahead.  To the right of the town stand ski hotels one after the other. St. Moritz is host of the 2003 Alpine Championships.

People busily prepare roads, signs and the ski slopes for the coming snow and rush of skiers town_of_St._Moritz.jpg (572018 bytes)expected in late November. To the right of the road is the hillside town of St. Moritz.  Here the expensive boutiques, restaurants, shops and ski stores leave your eyes and wallet tempted.


On the north end of town in Lugano is Tennis Club Lido.  Actually there are two Tennis Club Lido's.  One is a private club and the other is a public club. I can go right or left to each club off the same entrance. I can't tell you which club is which.  We played at the one on the left.  For CHF 26 per hour you play on the most well maintained red clayTennis Club Lido.JPG (90506 bytes) courts I have ever seen. As a added bonus the courts are situated on the side of Lake Lugano.  We played for two hours.  Our only mistake was not having lunch in the restaurant there before we went on the court.  In Europe they serve breakfast from 7:00 till 10:00.  Lunch is served 11:30 till 14:30 ( or there about) and dinner is served only after 19:30.  Trying to find anyone to serve you food after 14:30 until 19:30 is a major task.

Most meals here in the border towns of Switzerland, France and Italy serve meals with loads of fresh picked mushrooms.  I have a feeling each day people are out collecting loads of mushrooms in the treed areas around the town.  I saw a basket full of mushroom types I had never seen before at a restaurant we went to the other night.  Some Playing at Tennis Club Lido.JPG (125897 bytes)mushrooms were round and tall like logs.

Earlier that week it was raining so we found ourselves a great tennis club 15 km north of Lugano in a town called Cadro where they had indoor courts. The club was called Cadro Panoramica.  Here we are playing Pam, Ian and Aryn.JPG (123454 bytes)some singles and doubles indoor in the heights above the city of Lugano looking down on the lake. Telephone 091-9434501 and make a reservation!