Europe 2012- Day 8, Geneva to Paris

Day 8 of our European adventure was a long, full and really fun day. There was a lot of travel involved, but we made the most of the time we had to explore. We started out the day early taking the 7:23 bus from Busingen to Schaffhausen. From there we took a train into Zürich. Finally we took a train from Zürich that arrived in Geneva at 12:15. Our entire morning was spent watching the beautiful Swiss landscape slide by.

Video of the Swiss Countryside and Lake Geneva:

Love this area!

My packed lunch on the train and our arrival in Geneva:

    

When we arrived in Geneva it was a beautiful day but it quickly got gray and rainy. My trusty pink travel umbrella sure has been getting a lot of work! We walked to St. Peter’s in the rain, but it was a very interesting walk. Geneva is a type of city I’d never experienced before. It felt very business-like to me. Probably not a strange feeling since it is home to the United Nations and the Red Cross. We made it to St. Peters right as the rain was clearing up:

St. Peter’s was built between 1150 and 1230 and has Romanesque and Gothic features and a neoclassical monumental porch. In 1536 St. Peters became a major center of the Reformation under John Calvin. He preached here until 1564. Inside the church is a wooden chair used by him. One of the teachers on the trip, Randy Cloud, gave a great lesson on Calvin in one of the back areas:

    

    

Outside we had a little bit of time to mess around. My brother decided to go all Spiderman on a building:

The fam! 🙂

Our big group split up into smaller groups- some to go up the tower, others went down to the archeological site under the church, and we decided to walk several blocks away to go to the Reformation wall. (I would love to go up the tower or down to the archeological site sometime though!) The wall was finished in 1909 and was built to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Calvin’s birth and the 350th anniversary of the University of Geneva’s establishment. It is built into the old city walls of Geneva, and the monument’s location there is designed to represent the fortifications’, and therefore the city of Geneva’s, integral importance to the Reformation.

A little history lesson from Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reformation_Wall

“During the Reformation, Geneva was the centre of Calvinism, and its history and heritage since the sixteenth century has been closely linked to that of Protestantism. Due to the close connections to that theology, the individuals most prominently depicted on the Wall were Calvinists; nonetheless, key figures in other theologies are also included.”

At the centre of the monument, four 5 m-tall statues of Calvinism’s main proponents are depicted:

To the left (facing the Wall, ordered from left to right) of the central statues are 3 m-tall statues of:

To the right (ordered from left to right) are 3 m-tall statues of:

My shots of the wall:

    

    

    

We headed back to St. Peters and went into the Chapel of the Macabees- which was the first example of flamboyant Gothicism in Geneva. It was absolutly gorgeous:

    

There was rain threatening us, and from our lesson learned on the train ride from Montreux back to Zurich we knew we needed to get food before we left so we decided to walk back to the train station before everyone else in an attempt to beat the rain and get some food. We did get some food, but the rain caught up quickly. And it poured. 😦

    

    

Headed to PARIS!! This is my third time there, and as you can tell by my face I was super excited. 🙂

Our fast train ride through the French countryside: -Comparison between the man/praire dog stares, Kevin still playing with Pringles cans, workers in a vineyard, and my dinner- partially from a cafe in Geneva, and partially from the train:

    

    

The French country side is GORGEOUS!!:

We arrived in Paris at the Gare de Lyon station. It was so beautiful, even in the train station I could feel that ‘Paris feeling’ that I love. We got split up- my brother and I on the ‘Purple’ team and our parents on the ‘Red’ team so we went to two different hotels. We had to walk to get there the first time (the metro system would be our main system of transport later) and we had to walk through the rain, yet again!:

    

              

By the time we got to our hotel all I wanted was a shower, something to eat and to see the Eiffel Tower. We got something better. A chorus group from a Christian High School in LA was touring in Europe and were on their last day of their trip. We met them at our hotel where they were also staying. They found out that our group was a Christian college from Kansas and were so excited. They offered to sing for us- which of course we took them up on. First they sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to one of our group who was turning 20, (I feel so old), then they sang a beautiful French song. Finally they had us get in the middle of a big circle and they gathered all around us. They sang a blessing for our travel with a prayer before it. It was so beautiful and moving. Very much worth listening to!!!:

Fun day with an amazing ending! 🙂

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3 responses to “Europe 2012- Day 8, Geneva to Paris

  1. what a wonderful day, and the music was great! Thank you for sharing this day.

  2. Pingback: 2012 Manifesto End of Year Wrap up! | thegreentreeischirping

  3. Pingback: 1st November Recipe Test with Anna! | thegreentreeischirping

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