Happy New Year! Looking back at 2021, relocation and traveling
HAPPY NEW YEAR! After a week in the Netherlands for Christmas and New Year’s, I am now on the train from Arnhem to Zürich. With a delay of an hour, the new year starts somewhat frustrated, but that should not spoil the fun of looking back on the past year.
In January, we toasted to the new year in Langkawi. After Christmas, we left by car from Kuala Lumpur to Perlis, where we jumped on the boat to the island of Langkawi. Here, we enjoyed a wonderful vacation in Tanjung Rhu and later in the week in Ambong Ambong. Even though there were no fireworks at midnight and restaurants and clubs were closed, we couldn’t have had a better start to the new year.
February was all about saying goodbye. Saying goodbye to the people we got to know in Malaysia, but also to the restaurants we loved so much. A new lockdown didn’t make it easy for us, and with the move on top of it, it was a bit stressful at times, but I think we were able to get a lot done despite the restrictions.
On Monday, March 1, we got the key to our new apartment in Zürich. This month was mostly about buying furniture and decorating the house. We celebrated both our birthdays and at the end of March we enjoyed a wonderful weekend in the snow in Davos. It was a bit of a switch from two years of nothing but heat to snowy peaks and glühwein.
During Easter, we stayed in Gstaad for the weekend. Again we hiked through the snow and enjoyed the beautiful weather. We stayed in a hotel, so we got to eat in a restaurant for the first time. In the first months of 2021, stores and restaurants were still closed, and we could only get takeaway. So in Gstaad, we were in a hotel for the first time and ate… Thai curry!
After not being in the Netherlands for 14 months, we could finally take the car to visit friends and family. Before that, we first spent five days in quarantine in Schoorl, and we could recover from the jet lag haha luckily, we don’t suffer from that anymore, and with about nine hours drive, you’re from Switzerland to the Netherlands. We stayed a month and made up for everything we could not do in the time before. We were able to go out for dinner and lunch, made walks on the boulevard in Scheveningen, and did some shopping in Utrecht and The Hague.
At the beginning of June, we drove back to Zurich where it had already become a little warmer. We discovered the Walensee and packed the car for a week’s vacation in Stresa, Italy. Here we found out that we had missed the Italian food quite a bit, but we have also made up for that!
July was all about Switzerland. We visited Rapperswil, discovered the delicious Lindt chocolate in the Lindt Museum, spent a day in Basel, and rode the Glacier Express from Andermatt to Zermatt. A beautiful train ride where we enjoyed the views for three hours before arriving at Zermatt’s showpiece, the Matterhorn. Unfortunately, it did not show itself and remained hidden in the fog. Good reason to go back soon!
Since we were looking forward to Italian pizza again, we drove to Tuscany in August. The first days we were in an agriturismo with alpacas after which we continued to Florence and Rimini. A wonderful vacation with beautiful weather and good food. The trip ended with another day in Stresa before it was time to return home. In Switzerland, we climbed Mount Pilatus, which turned out to be a lot harder than expected, but it allowed us to try and work of the pizzas.
A week later, we returned to Italy for a weekend in a villa at Lake Como. Ideally, we live so centrally in Switzerland, and we can drive to the Italian border in a few hours. In Como, we didn’t do much more than eat and walk, which is recommended! We also had to work in September, but this was interspersed with several visits from the Netherlands!
In October, the weather changed, and we were getting ready for winter, at least I was trying to mentally prepare myself for the cold that was coming. I don’t seem to be able to do that, by the way. We also went to the Zurich Food Festival several times and took a day trip to Schaffhausen.
At the beginning of November, we could play tennis on clay for the last time before it was time to prepare the courts for the winter. Of course, I was not too sad about that, because I don’t think the cold and I will be best friends. Jeroen and I were at the cinema in Zurich for the first time for the new James Bond movie, something we did a lot more frequently in Malaysia. And we flew to the Netherlands for a week of vacation just before the new measures.
The last month of the year was all about visiting Christmas markets in Zürich and eating raclette! We baked grittibänz, climbed the white top of the Uetliberg, and snowboarded a weekend in Davos. Just before Christmas, we flew back to the Netherlands to celebrate Christmas with the family. Very cozy and nice that we could do this again after three years! New year’s eve was also celebrated and before you know it, the year is over, and you are sitting on the train going home.
Meanwhile, I am somewhere in the town of Baden Baden and have to sit another three hours before I am home again. With an hour delay and waiting in Frankfurt, I don’t believe I would make this trip again anytime soon. Oh well, I was able to look back on the year 2021 where we moved and traveled quite a bit. I’m looking forward to the new year and wondering what adventures await us again!