In high mountains precipitation occurs in form of snow. Individual snowstorms deposit one layer on top of another. It melts very little. The weight of this snow causes the loose snowflakes to be compressed and form ice crystals. The air originally present in the snow ( between the crystals) is compressed into bubbles and is an indication of the air at the time of the snow fall. The accumulated snow and air in the ice was waiting. Waiting to be seen and marvelled at. Waiting to touch and wow. Waiting.
Had heard so much about the Jungfrau in the Bernese Oberland of Swiss. You need to go there. What you been to Switzerland and DID NOT SEE the Glacier? Hmm so you went to quite a few near by places. We did not do so much, but then we have seen Jungfrau, that’s more than all the others combined, twice over. Its this, Its that. Then all those picture. In the stands, On the covers, On the wrappers of chocolate. All this built up and I was waiting. Waiting to see the snow in summer. Waiting to be touched and wowed. Waiting.
The clouds were suspended inches above the water on one of the lakes of Interlaken as the noiseless train glided past. Sun was throwing shy beams at it, afraid it may disturb a duet. Water and moisture. Blue and white. How many times can you see clear water with cotton clouds just touching – with the backdrop being mountains green ? Asked VJ sweetly. With sun playing the fiddle to the composition, I added. The wait had ended we were on the way to Jungfrau via Interlaken. Me and My wife.
The emerged from postcard houses on the rolling lush meadows looked through the windows and clicked the shutter of my Canon as I sat in the train to Lauterbrunnen. The peaks of the Oberland smiled in anticipation of the visit and end of the waiting. The Cog wheels of the mountain train were singing with rhythm, with suppressed glee. Cool breeze accompanying.
The J with all the jewelled splendour “showcased” beamed a welcome at the Kleine Scheidegg. The old train bid bye and a new one welcomed. The majestic snow called. I’ll take your to the place where there is snow and through the mountain it will be. Said the train. Just bellow the skin with gentle, looping, ascending tracks is the way said the mountain. Look soon we will be inside the mountain said VJ. I nodded. Anticipating.
We are at the Eiger and from here many a rescue starts. On clear days the view of the valley bellow from the view ports is unforgettable. We will halt here for five minutes. This was the speaker on the right top corner of the train. The snow and the vast panorama from the other side of the port winked. See how purely pretty the valley can be. They said. The cogged, clean, train halted and the tunnelled mountain of Jungfrau said, so you are here, look at the map and come on. There are sights to be shown. Wind to be blown and the cold to be felt. Inhale. Go to the Ice Palace the map said. Smile on the entrance to the to palace had naughtiness. Move slowly and get used. And prey do not slip and hurt your self, this way please. See that black line ? well snow bellow that is pre 1945. Come along, see this beautifully sculptured angle. Hello and please acquaint yourself with this polar bear , these birds and that pretty dame too. That was the Ice Angle. So long have fun on the plateau said the playful I.P on exit.
Plateau gave the first taste of the glacier. Snow. White. Driven. Majesty. Clouds were coming in to have a better look and blocked the sun. Hello, nice to see you here and this is where we will be, for this day. VJ came closer. The chill smiled. The ice crunched slightly under the feet. The plateau giggled. Come on, this is just the start, move over to railings and see the glacier basking. Eyes just widened. You did not make us see this kind of beauty even on TV. See that rock. Sculpted on snow.
The map was getting impatient, the plateau is pretty yes, but you can actually walk on the glacier if you come this way. The mouth of the cave to the exit to the glacier yawned. The tongue of snow made a slide for me and VJ. The wind picked some snow and threw it on the cheek. Cold. Hands clasped. The path enticed. Ho Ho never thought we could walk on ice. But it was good and soon not so cold. A red flag with white cross fluttered. Come catch me if you can. The eyes were happy and pleaded the legs to carry. The path rolled ahead. Announcing arrival. Watch said an hour past noon.
The snow at the flag played with us disguised as snow man. I’ve VJ’s blue coolers and am not recognisable. The Canon clicked images of happy me and wify dear and that Telegu bunch from California. Beauty twirled around. Icy blue frock puffed. the remote restaurant peeked shyly through the clouds. VJ set her eyes on it. Soon the feet were moving towards. Hot soup warmed the palette and the nose thawed. Hunger subsided. Lets go back now.
So now that you are warm and full I thing you are ready for us. And the flakes and wind teased. Intensely. Played with us, with out permission or welcome. Or really ?
Gently drifting down
Winter flurries are coming
Tickling my cold face
— Sean Klabough
Back at the yawning cave watch said ten past four.
You have walked on the ice. Seen the snow that makes ice. Now see how this snow and frozen water over a eon or two form the gliding, groaning Glacier. That was Sphinx tower. This way Damen und Herren, It was the elevator. The terraces on Sphinx tower opened and the Ice river thought of turning around and lazily decided against. The Silence encompassed. The wow rose. Rose as eyes rested on the G. Rose a feeling from with in. Rose as serenity filled the heart. Rose as the mind blissfully napped, breath sighed and stopped. The Silence encompassed.
After a hot coffee in the station warmed from with in, we went back to stare at the white, pure, Snow-Ice spread. In that primordial silence felt the enchantment deep. VJ gave it words when she said, this place’s magic is strong. The spells potent. This will remain with us and will be broken only when we will it. Could not agree less. The Magic indeed will be broken only by self. And I thought, how much like this Silence and how much like love.