Sunday, 18 December 2011

Swiss Hitchhiking

Two days ago, the train in which I was riding home from work all of a sudden came to a standstill - a heavy storm had disrupted the electrical feeding. An announcement let us know that there should be a bus station nearby. Most passengers began to get off the train. I heard a military officer saying to a lady who seemed to travel in the same direction that I did that maybe we could find a taxi. I approached him and told him that I would also be interested in sharing a taxi.

It was dark, and raining, and windy, when we started to move in the direction of a hotel from where we wanted to order the taxi. When we learned that it would take at least half an hour for the taxi to arrive, we opted for hitchhiking.

Now imagine this: three people in their fifties - an elegantly clad lady, a military officer in uniform and a guy wearing cowboy boots, leather jacket and jeans - hitchhiking after dark in the rain on the main street of a Swiss village. Needless to say chances that somebody would give us a ride were extremely remote.

Car after car, some big and spacious, drove by. Most of them were empty save for the driver. As expected, none of them stopped. But then, after about ten or fifteeen minutes, an old and rather small car with most of its seats packed with stuff, did stop. It belonged to a young woman who asked whether the three of us could manage with the remaining space. We could. When we told her where we needed to go in order to catch our connecting train, she took us there although it wasn't exactly on her way home.

On a day like this life in Switzerland feels good.

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