May 18th, 2013, 5pm

It was 21°C with few clouds. The breeze was gentle.

It was a perfect day for a hike—the only sunny day that week, apparently. Lucerne was beautiful. We needed to see it while the sun was out. Now.


I wasn’t in perfect shape for a mini hike that day—all jetlagged and (not so) fresh from San Francisco a couple of hours before. I just wanted to sleep. But Rolf wouldn’t hear any of it. In fact, he had already given me a break by opting for the tourist-y way up (cable car + boat + train) vs. actual hiking.

SLEEP? Are you kidding me? We’re going up Mt. Pilatus today.

But… okay. It was useless arguing with Rolf. He was both my favorite and least favorite person to travel with. Favorite because he speaks seven languages (!!!) in all the right accents. Favorite because he loves to plan trips. Favorite because he hires me to design posters for his Tokyo tours and pays me in travel perks. He was our savvy, bossy, über-cultured jetsetter friend.

Least favorite because he bullies me a lot. He once bullied and bossed me around for a week in Osaka just because I kept losing my stuff for some reason. Christine, what are you doing?! Oh, I knew you’d lose your ticket. You didn’t keep it properly. Hurry up!

And he was at it today, too.

I kept staring longingly at the warm cafe craving a nice warm cappuccino with this lovely view, but no. We were going up. He might have had to push me up the last stairway.

One last stairway. I try to catch my breath. (And make a mental note to start working out. It was embarrassing—this was probably not even a steep hill for seasoned hikers.)


Then, whoa.

A stern, told you so face from Rolf.

Holy moly, this view! I smile.

Okay. He wins. Thanks, Rolf. This view is priceless.


I just remembered to extend this moment this week, after hearing that one of my best friends just got engaged to her boyfriend on their Europe getaway.

According to her boyfriend, Paris was too cliché. So he opted for Mt. Pilatus instead. (Good choice man!)

Her account of the moment via Whatsapp was hilarious.

He made me climb these stairs, oh my god, I was so tired.

I had to laugh out loud. Been there, done that.

And there I was all tired as we reached the top, then he stops and says, “it’s time.” And I’m all angry that he made me climb so much, that I almost snap: “What do you mean, ‘it’s time’?!?!”

Then he gets down on one knee…!

We all laugh. It was sweet. Her boyfriend was in tears (love it!) and she was too stunned to do anything but say yes. Facebook photos, oh my god that ring!, congratulations followed.


Same view, two completely different moments. Hopefully the next time I see this view it won’t be with Rolf pushing me up the hill again.

Ricardo, Jordan, Shiloah, Cassie and 8 others said thanks.

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Christine Herrin

Designer. History major. Memory keeper, paper hoarder, frequent flyer.

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