If I could invite you to my bedroom, the first thing you’d notice when you step inside would probably be the numerous postings on the walls which shamelessly spell out what I want to achieve and experience in life. Perhaps the most conspicuous of them all is my dream board. Yeah… I am a self-confessed subscriber of this kind of stuff. I believe in the power of dream boards you see, and just recently, I have proven that they indeed work like magic!
Last January, I pinned this little piece of paper on my dream board:
I placed that there one fine night without really giving it much thought. I just figured that I would really like to see other places outside of the country once and for all. I don’t really have any means or resources to make this happen soon but I posted it there anyway because according to the book The Secret, means is quite irrelevant in the process of manifesting.
After daydreaming that evening, I slept on the idea and carried on with my usual activities the next day. Life went by pretty well. I would wake up everyday and the first thing I would see when I open my eyes would be my dream board. I’d look at it for 2 seconds max and then I’d forget about it for the rest of the day.
Fast forward to July… and I just found myself on a plane with free food and free in-flight entertainment. I thought “Well, that was new”. Surely, it wasn’t Cebu Pacific anymore. Yes! I was flying out of the country for the very first time ever! and I couldn’t believe it at all. What more, I was being sent by the government to Europe for an important official business which means that I am traveling abroad… with almost all expenses paid for me!
Next thing I knew, the Swiss Alps was just beneath me. Camouflaging pretty well with an equally beautiful sea of clouds, these snowy mountains were a breath-taking view.
After a fifteen hour flight, I set foot on the soils of a nation known for its neutrality, watches, cheese and chocolates: Switzerland! 🙂
We stayed in Geneva for a week. However short our stay was, I could say I had an absolutely amazing time. Maybe it’s because I got there without even getting over yet the fact that a dream I once just posted on my wall is now materializing right before my very eyes. And maybe it’s also because Geneva was a little lovely surprise for me, which I will explain why.
Geneva is beautiful in a very simple way. The buildings are nice to look at, the streets are spotlessly clean, and Lake Geneve is a pleasant bonus too. But it wasn’t a city full of grandeur -No intimidating architectures, no extravagantly dressed ladies passing by (kinda how I’d imagine Paris would be), no glits and glam at night, nothing very special actually.
But I appreciated it even more precisely because it’s like that. It is a very chill place, very sunny at the time we were there. It is something a person like me who loves taking leisurely walks could live with.
The weather was crisp but you can feel the cool air at the same time. There are not a lot of people and not a lot of cars. You will see bikes parked around instead.
The Swiss are also generally nice. They would smile at you when you (a foreigner) walk by, try to photobomb you for fun as you take your selfies (happened to me thrice), and would even offer to take a snap of you if they see that you are a tourist with no company. haha.
This is the garden of Hotel Drake and Longchamp where we stayed. I was really loving the place for its cozy ambience. And did I mention that the people who work at the hotel are some of the nicest bunch of people I’ve met? They were very accommodating, they were always smiling and courteous to guests all of the time.
For all the good things I’ve experienced about Geneva, my two favorite things about the city would be its love for flowers and alfresco restaurants. 🙂
Here in the Philippines, I consciously search for dining places with these two features. I would often end up in an expensive part of the city but I would indulge because I am such a sucker for anything romantic and relaxed. In Geneva though, looking for such wouldn’t be as hard and costly. Flower boxes are a usual decoration there. You see them hanging by the window panes of condos, houses and offices, or as typical facades of private establishments. My heart was just so full of satisfaction. 🙂
Garden of pink roses in front of the Palais Wilson, a hotel famous for its bullet-proof windows and all that shizz. This is where world leaders would usually stay if they visit Geneva for security reasons. lol. It sounds like a “very serious business“-kind of hotel but it is betrayed by its exteriors as it looks like a really pretty palace, in pink to boot! lol
This is another hotel nearby, facing the famous Lake Geneve. I don’t even have to describe it by words. I’ll shut up now and it can take my money! LOL
As I’ve already said, Geneva is teeming with restaurants. You will find at least one in literally every corner of the street. It’s crazy!!! And what I love about it is that all of them have alfresco areas. OMG… I can actually live in this city for good! I will probably die here inspired and fat and happy! 🙂
I can already see myself sipping a cup of coffee in one of these spots on a lazy Sunday afternoon, silently observing people passing by, thinking enthusiastically of the next thing I have to do, and constantly being grateful of a good simple life 😉
On the day that we arrived, we took a short walk along lake Geneve as we search for a place to get dinner. Here are a few snaps of the goings-on in that part of the city:
So that wraps up my first post about my first ever trip abroad. Ain’t I lucky? 🙂 My first overseas destination is Europe and I didn’t even pay for my plane fare and accommodation. haha. As they say, if you truly want something, the universe conspires to give it to you.
Six months ago, I dared to dream of traveling abroad even though I don’t have substantial savings at all. Who would’ve thought that the Universe would find a way for me to achieve this regardless? ^_^
You guys!!! I really encourage you to dream big and write ’em down! VISUALIZATION WORKS. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Til the next dream realized! Cheers! 🙂
p.s. I have a series of posts related to my trip to Geneva. This is just a patikim. 😉 In my next few posts I will be doing a review of a very lovely restaurant in Geneva and other nice mini-trips I had around the city.