As I write this, I'm sitting in my hotel room in Appenzell, the little town where our tour began two (seems like six) weeks ago. On Saturday, we rode from Grindelwald to Vitznau, a tiny place on the other side of Lake Lucerne, to which we had to cross on a ferry to end our day. The prettiest scene we saw that day was from above Lake Lungernsee:
|Sunday morning on Lake Lucerne|
Then yesterday, we ended up in an equally tiny place, Wildhaus. There were several route options. Mine took me along the Walensee on a nice bike path, then around in the Rhine River valley before climbing up to Wildhaus.
|On the bike path along the Walensee|
I had been looking for an appropriate place the last two days to spread some more of Mark's ashes and finally found one a few miles from Wildhaus. The road entered a dense wood, a serene out-of-the-way place, and I decided this was a good place. After we left the wood, I took the picture that serves as the lead photo, above.
When I went down for breakfast this morning, the morning light on the mountains south of Wildhaus was gorgeous, resulting in this picture:
Today's ride, which brought us back to Appenzell, was short. Part of it took us up into high alpine pastures at the base of the Säntis. I rode with my old friend, Tom, and my new friend, John. I had my last portion of Mark's ashes to spread, and as we passed one point sheltered by rocks and trees, I felt like this was a good place to finish letting Mark go. I felt he would be pleased. It was harder than I had expected, and I became a bit emotional; but I felt like he would have liked this place - remote, quiet, pastoral yet rugged:
|The final resting place of the last of Mark's mortal remains|
|Tom, John and Me|
Tomorrow, we leave Appenzell early in the morning for Zurich airport. It has been an amazing two weeks. There is much I could say, but I think I'll leave it here for now. Much to process and ponder. I am grateful.