Tuesday, December 17, 2013

31 Days in December #17: Bern, friends, and bears

Leanne and I go over the music for Sunday a few times before W, Doris, and I have to leave for Bern. Neither Leanne nor I know our part but we're in the first rehearsal so it's no big deal. 

The streets center around fountains
with historical statues

Bern is Switzerland's capital city, beautifully dressed for Christmas with 4' live trees fixed to buildings along the main streets. When the sun goes down, the lights twinkle down on each side of the thoroughfare where pedestrians walk.

Das Rathaus (Parliament)
We're meeting Regina and her three children (5, 3, 1) who have taken a 2.5 hour train trip from NE Switzerland to Bern. There's a play car for children on their express train and the children have had a good trip. 

Regina's family under the clock tower
D and Regina lived in our neighborhood when their son was a baby. We met at a cafe in Kirkland and then again on walks closer to home. They spent Christmas with us in 2010, playing a trombone duet and little M sitting on my lap at the piano for the carol sing.

At the Bärenpark

The kids walk with Regina and me all the way from the station through town to the bear park. One bear is strolling around the stumps, to the delight of the children. The littlest gal is an angel: she sleeps all the way to the park, walks around a bit while we're there, then hops back into the stroller without fussing. What a pleasure to see them on their own soil again, after several years ago on ours!

Doris and I at the Christmas Market
After Regina's family catches the train back home, W, Doris, and I walk through the Berner Christmas Markets. I love the Christmas celebrations in this part of the world.

We head back home through Thun where we pick up some chocolates at Aldi.

A cream horn to finish up
Doris makes a cheese fondue for supper: bread, apples, cheese. Accompanied by pickled onions and red cabbage, it's the perfect meal. A few pastries finish up the evening.

Read more:
*Jacob said to his household, "Put away the foreign gods that are among you, and purify yourselves." Genesis 35:2 ESV

*But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: "The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel" (which means "God with us"). Matthew 1:20-23 NIV

*Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Luke 12:34 ESV

Moravian Prayer: God, you dared to become as vulnerable and frail as we are. Grant us the courage to let go of what keeps us from living a redeemed and renewed life in relationship with you. Amen.

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