|Helvetia with a Seagull on her head|
Most of the train ride was uneventful, although it did start with me getting rather unceremoniously booted out of first class. It must have been an older train because when I hopped on, it looked exactly like the second class section of the Swiss trains I previously rode. When the SBB ticket man came to check the tickets, he examined mine and asked me some questions in French and Swiss German. I assumed he was asking to see ID or my half-pass for the Swiss rails, so I coolly flashed both cards. He then told me in English that this was first class and I couldn't sit there. I said, "oh, okay," but he he stood there blocking me from stepping into the aisle until I had packed up all my stuff and turned left to walk down to the much older second class seating. This is the Hollywood reenactment of that scene:
Once I got to Basel, the tourist office people in the train station were very helpful and gave me maps of the city and the public transportation trams and buses. It was still too early for some things to be open, but I made my way over to the Kunstmuseum ("art museum," in German) and started walking through the Altstadt ("old town," in German). The old town in Basel was beautiful, and the Munsterplatz (plaza in front of the cathedral) was empty so early on a Saturday morning. I walked along the old streets, past a Basalisk fountain, and through winding streets with houses dating back to the 1300s.
When I got to the river, I walked through some shops to a bakery to grab something for breakfast. I ate the pastry by the Rhine River, and then walked back up this stairway between old houses to get back to the Munsterplatz to enter the cathedral. The outside of the cathedral is bright red, and the inside was gorgeous as well.
Here's the other church:
|Basalisk fountain (I thought the Basalisk would be bigger)|
|Stairway down to the River and Bakery|
|Shops along the Rhine in Basel|
And behind that, the modern art Tinguely Fountain. The fountain was built in 1977 on the location where the old city's theatre stage used to be. The new theatre is right next to the fountain. The fountain also has moving pieces in it, so it's fun to just sit next to it, in the shade or sun, and listen to the water move through the different parts of the fountain.
|Rock Needle and the Porte d'Aval|
|Bed of Chrysanthemums|
|The Sea at Antibes|
|Snow-Covered Boulevard de Pontoise in Argenteuil|
|Self Portrait with Japanese Stamp|
|Gelten Falls in the Summer|
|La Matete (The Market)|
|Amazon in Profile|
|Italian Villa Among the Pines|
|The Bold Woman|
|By Lake Uri|
|Entry to the Urbach Valley|
|Caravan Surprised by the Samum in front of the Sphinx|
|Landscape near Granada|
|Macbeth and the Witches|
|Eruption of Mount Vesuvius|
|Jungle with Setting Sun|
|The Violin. Reminds me of a Guayasamin painting.|
|Glass and Newspaper|
|The Red Guitar|
|Bison in Winter (the Red Bison)|
|Wind's Bride (The Tempest)|
Basel was quite a fun day trip and tomorrow, it's time to get ready for Gruyeres!