Friday, April 17, 2009

Divide and Conquer

For their next adventures, Martello and Trofie Wife split up, each laying claim to a different swath of Switzerland for the weekend, with Martello skiing with his officemates on the French side and Trofie Wife visiting her family in Zurich (the German side). Martello had a great time skiing, particularly enjoying the freedom of not having to wait for me at every turn.

While it was nice to see her family, Trofie Wife definitely had been sold a false bill of goods (prior to getting on a train) regarding her niece and nephew’s ability to sleep through the night (they, in fact, don’t know how or have a very loose definition of "night"). As per usual, my child tolerance level capped out after about ten minutes (apparently, I was even zipping through bedtime stories too quickly; sorry, I wanted to read my own fascinating book). I did have some additional patience for the swapping of dirty looks with the tiny one (she senses my derision for her kind, and I sense that she already has the sarcastic wit of an adult, likely gifted by her father), who is continually confused by my physical resemblance to her mother and lack of a similar level of affection/ability to feed her.

About 12 hours into my stay, my overtired (due to the non-sleeping children in her care) sister managed to drop her house keys down the elevator shaft en route to the park, so our Saturday afternoon excursion (originally meant to be time at the lake) turned into an adventure to get the spare key from my brother-in-law (whose office, thankfully, is situated near the main Sprungli chocolate store). The rest of the day included naps (always a plus), a trip to the park (where I had to negotiate, with a persistent munchkin, regarding the number of sticks that would be permitted in the apartment (one, but he might have lost that privilege somewhere along the path home), quality Asian fusion takeout, sisterly bonding time (with children stashed away), and Vicky Christina Barcelona, which was truly fantastic (thank you, Woody!).

WANTED: For obstruction of sleep. Armed with instruments and surprisingly skillful lungs.

However, Trofie Wife's attempt at blissful sleep on Saturday night dissipated around 4:30 a.m. when the type of loud noises that could only be made by a baby (or toddler or whatever she is) emerged from the room next door; by 7 a.m. the older one was banging his tambourine. It was clear that I really needed to get out of that place! So, I maneuvered myself to the train station and enjoyed the truly gorgeous rail ride between Milan and Zurich (if you ever have the chance to do it, please do; you pass all the lakes and rows upon rows of mountainous skyline).

During my nearly two-hour layover in a sunny Milan, I ruminated on how we needed to spend more time there (preferably outside the train station). When I finally arrived in Arenzano, I basked in the quiet of our apartment and greeted an equally exhausted Martello when he walked through the door about an hour later. Trofie Wife slept very well that night, thank you.

Baci e gelato,

Martello e Trofie Wife

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