The trip to Annecy was the most difficult one for me. Having a low endurance, I was completely worn out after six days straight of continuous walking (and climbing the stairs). Things got worse on that Saturday because I stayed awake until 3 to pack my stuff as the train left at around 8.
We finally managed to get to the station at around 7. As the train started to move, we all fell asleep, and in the middle of the way we had to change trains at Lyon.
Travelling with a lot of luggage was not really nice. We had a total of 6 luggage, I myself carried 2 heavy backpacks which made me look like siamese turtles.
Anyway, we arrived in Annecy at around 2, and as soon as we went downstairs we met Olivier who picked us up. Oli is a pen friend of ours and his parents live in Cuvat, a village in the outskirts of Annecy. The last time I met him was in Singapore 10 years ago (yikes, how time flies!) so it was nice to see him again.
He then drove us to his parents’ house in Cuvat, where they had already waited for us to have a big lunch. And what a nice big lunch it was. For a starter we had a salad, then grilled chicken as the main course, and some French cheese afterwards. I tried the ‘nice’ cheese (in a way not too strange) called reblochon. Oh and of course we had wine to accompany our lunch.
After lunch Oli’s father took us to the garden and showed some plants there, like potato, strawberry, courgette, carrot, etc. He also asked us to guess some herbs like coriander and dill.
By the way, Oli’s family got a new dog now, after their previous dog Baloo (which unfortunately I saw only in the picture he sent me in 1997 or something) died a few years ago. The new dog however, looked almost the same with Baloo. He’s big (I bet if he stands up he will be bigger than me) and dark, and his name is Kabul.
At around 4 oli took us to his family’s apartment in Annecy. His parents bought the apartment so that Oli and his brothers (Francois & Alex, who were not there at that time, unfortunately) could go to school easier. They all used to go to the same high school in Annecy (even their dad went to that school too), where it only took them 7 minutes walking from the apartment, instead of half an hour drive.
Actually we could choose to stay either in Annecy or Cuvat, but I think due to my health problem (which included an awful flu, toothache, and migraine caused by the wisdom tooth, and a bit fever) I preferred to stay in Annecy so I would not bother anyone with my illness.
After dropping our heavy luggage at the apartment, Oli took us on a short tour around the old town of Annecy. Most of the buildings in the old city of Annecy looked really really nice. However, since Annecy is in the mountainous part of France (close to Geneva), the city walk is filled with going uphill and downhill.
The river that ran through the city came from the famous lake and it was completely clear water. We could see the bottom of the river, really unlike the canals in The Netherlands.
At 6 we returned to the apartment and afterwards Ci Ichay & Koh Nanug joined Oli to go to a party held by his best friend Robin. I decided just to stay in the apartment that evening because the toothache got even worse and I also got a fever, plus a migraine on the same side where the tooth was coming.
I remember that I woke up later that evening in the empty apartment and went to the bathroom to brush my teeth and had an aspirin. I quickly return to bed after that because I started to shiver.
I think it was around midnight that Ci Ichay & Koh Nanug returned and then she gave me an Indonesian paracetamol Biogesic and a painkiller from Oli’s mother.
The next day I woke up really late (considering that I had been sleeping since 6 in the afternoon), but felt much better. I guess I just needed a good (i.e. a lot) amount of sleep and rest if I wanted to be able to continue the intensive journey.
Ci Ichay and Koh Nanug had a city walk in Annecy again that morning but I had to skip it because I was still recovering from my fever. So I just had a slow morning: had a 8pt breakfast, took a shower, and packed my stuff. My sister returned at around 1 and Oli came shortly after to pick us up for lunch in Cuvat.
We had a nice, fresh lunch that day. A friend of Oli’s family, Gladys, was also dropping by at the house that afternoon.
At around 2 we said goodbye to Oli’s parents and Oli drove us across the Swiss border to Geneva. The landscape on the way to Geneva was marvellous. With mountain on one side, and clear blue lake on the other side.
We took the 15.20 train to Luzern, and yes, we were already on our way to the next destination.
ps: oh and there were a lot of leafless trees in cuvat! 😀