Tues 25th June.
Matt and I used up the last of the food before saying goodbye, not seeing each other again until my return to London in about three months time.
My aim for the next few days was to go to Lausanne, where another friend Luke, lived. But before doing so, I would take a detour up and around the ‘Lac de Joux’ (near the French border) then head to Lausanne, spending a night near the lake.
There was plenty left to see in Geneva, namely famous architectural buildings I’d read about whilst there. Spoilt for choice, I decided to see one of Le Corbusier’s pioneering buildings, Immeuble Clarté, just outside the centre. It took me a while to find, partially as it looked like a lot of other buildings and had nothing signifying its cultural significance.
The myths of Switzerland being expensive aren’t wrong. I bought the bare essentials at a supermarket to keep me going for a few days and it came to 19CHF (Swiss Francs). The same in France would’ve cost me about €6. Although conversion rates apply, Swiss Francs to Pounds are about 1CHF to 70p, which isn’t great. My spending it Switzerland would become minimised.
On the way out I picked up a map which cost another 19CHF. I’d bought a tiny amount of food and a map and I was £30 down. There’s little you can do other than abide by the laws of the land or leave.
The roads were remarkably clean and straight with signage to follow. You habitually get used to the signage in countries, it’s a subtle nuance of the DNA of a place, that strikes you as off-kilter when it changes to what you’ve become accustomed too. I had the same entering France from the UK and entering Spain from France.
The road I took was as close to the lake as possible and went all the way up to Lausanne and around to Montreux. The view of the lake was serene with the alps of France on the other side.
I left the lake about 15 miles north of Geneva and start to head up into the hills adorning the Lac de Joux. There would be more passes here, around a 1500m altitude. Then a more after Lausanne where I would head east into the Swiss Alps. There was a few examples of Swiss architecture along with older lodges and buildings on the way up, but it was certainly apparent that there was a casual abundance of wealth floating around these parts.
Camping was no easy feat here. I’d searched for long enough before giving up and settling for a spot near the road and in plain view of a house. I didn’t think anyone would intervene and they didn’t as the house was abandoned.