Berne

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We travelled by train to Berne with Henri and Mireille to see Klee meets Picasso. Klee is a Bernese artist and a magnificent gallery has been built on the edge of Berne to commemorate him.

Bernese bear

Then some tourist activities – but first came lunch: 2 kinds of bread (v good), 3 kinds of cheese (excellent), a tomato, a park bench and a Swiss Army pocket knife. This was just near the old bear pits that are now converted into a performance space for humans (Waiting for Godot is coming soon). The bears have a new home nearby, overlooking the river. Anyway, as lunch was finishing I saw this. People who have seen Exit through the gift shop will know about the street artist Space Invader and his tendency to place mosaics in public places around the world. He has put quite a few around Berne (which I only found out later) but it was a bit of a thrill to spot it like that!

Ok – the tourist activities. The river – it’s pale green-blue and fast flowing with rubber raft groups floating downstream. Henri and Mireille took us to the low lying part of town that gets flooded every so often. Then to the Berne Cathedral. It has painted sculptures over the entrance and, inside, the ceiling is deep blue with gold stars. We listened to the organist who was playing a 20th century piece (goosebumps on last chord). Then up the tower (222 steps) to see the view over the city.

Around the old town, to the Swiss Houses of Parliament in front of which a computerised fountain sprays jets of water that children love to play in on a warm day.

Art galleries and tourist activities are at least as tiring as riding up a big hill. We took the train home and Henri made fondue for dinner. You are meant to have it in winter but we’re in favour of breaking rules. It was delicious with chunks of onion and garlic added. Blueberries and blackberries for dessert.

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