Daily Prompt: Meander

Weissenstein 23.08 (67)

If you live in Switzerland you often meander. We do not have many straight paths leading in a direct line to where you want to go. They are often sideways, because there are slopes in the way.

I remember one occasion when we were on holiday in Grindelwald, one of the those places in the mountainous region of the Bernese Overland where the mountain goats and the cows say good night to each other. The family AngloSwiss, together with the two sons in school age. took a walk to discover new mountain paths. They were not exactly mountains, just very tall hills. We departed in the morning and climbed over stock and stone until we realised we were lost. There was no way up or down and also no actual foot trodden path. We did not even see a cow and that is unusual  in the Bernese Overland. The cow population exeeds the human population by a few hundred, but they had probably meandered to the alps at the top of the mountain.

It was then that we saw a farm house, the first sign of civilisation. It was a nice farmhouse with sheds for the cow population and a farmer’s wife. She greeted us as we walked past and we asked if she knew which way we should go to arrive in the village. She was very friendly and pointed to a downward path, which was more a muddy trial. She immediately took pity on us and asked if we were thirsty.

Of course we were. Mr. Anglo Swiss already had a vision of a cool beer, although I would have been happy with a glass of water. She disappeared into the farmhouse and reappeared with a tray containing glasses and a large jug. Yes, we were being offered a nice cooling drink of milk, fresh from the cow. It even had the skin and cream of the milk on top.  What could we say? The kids accepted. I am not a milk drinker. I do not really like milk, unless perhaps it is a milk shake with a strawberry flavour, but cows do not produce milk with flavours. I also prefer it in a box and pasturised or sterilised. I do not like milk with the original udder taste. Mr. Swiss managed to drink his milk whilst I was still feeling a little queasy to say the least. Somehow I managed to let my milk disappear, without drinking it myself.

We thanked the nice farmer’s wife and attacked the meandering downward muddy slope to the village. On this day I realised that if you are a farmer’s wife in the alps you have a different attitude to a fresh drink. I learned for future hikes, that paths that did not meander up and down, but straight ahead, were the ones to avoid. There would only be a glass of fresh milk, straight from the cow, as a reward at the end of the path.

Cows

Daily Prompt: Meander

13 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Meander

  1. Our nearest farm also has cows from whom you get fresh, unpasteurized (legal) milk and like you, I don’t LIKE milk. I never did. Oddly, neither does Garry and apparently we were a plague on our households as children, refusing milk, the one thing that parents are absolutely sure their kids are supposed to drink. We must also be the only house I know of where there is never any milk in the fridge.

    Our paths meander too. I think that’s a country thing … and a hilly thing. In our case, it’s hills and rivers, too. Paths go around the hills and try to bypass the ponds and streams and rivers. We are defined by the rivers and there are so many of them!

    I’m certain that all of our roads go up and NONE of them ever seem to go down. Is that possible? Or is that just me?

    Liked by 1 person

    • We got our little bottles of milk every day at school. It was free because they wanted us children to grow up healthy, but I hated it. It was the horrible stuff with the cream on top and we were forced to drink it. I have now discovered that I am lactose intolerant, so I never drink milk today. I don’t evern drink coffee.
      i don’t mind our local paths, as I know where they are going. It was the paths in the mountains where you never knew if they finished in the middle of nowhere.
      I could climb up better than climbing down. I would lose my grip on the downward paths.

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    • I havn’t been able to eat ice cream for some time, and I do not like yogurt. A hundred years ago in London there was so much malnutrition amongst the poorer working class that free milk was introduced in the schools which did solve a lot of problems as many children had rickets. Today many of us have a lactose problem, including me, Strange how things can change

      Liked by 1 person

      • When I started school, we also had to drink either milk, hot cocoa or nesquik every day at first break and I loathed all of them! I used to leave mine and then of course the teacher would want to know who hadn’t had theirs and I just kept very quiet!

        Liked by 1 person

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