16:40, Thursday 22. August

I’m convinced that my bag is much heavier than it was yesterday. I definitely didn’t pack it as well as it was before, since there was something digging into my coccyx that hadn’t been that uncomfortable yesterday.

I didn’t leave Benoit’s apartment until about 2pm, and started a leisurely walk down to where he had said the tram was. I could have taken the bus, which was a lot closer, but the tram was cheaper and I fancied a walk.

I went into a supermarket on the way to pick up one of my essentials, snacks. Armed with brioche, some crisps and some chocolate cookies (which came to a grand total of €1.92) I continued my trek to the tram station. It was a bit further than I’d expected, and brioche was eaten along the way.

Once I finally arrived (and had discovered that I’d been staying just over the border in France) it was time to buy a ticket. The problem: the machine only accepted coins. I didn’t have coins in either euros or francs, I only had notes. This meant that I had to use my debit card, which has probably cost me a bomb in fees. The next problem was which tram to get. They all departed the platform in the same direction, and neither stated ‘Généve’, which would have been helpful.

I went to one of the tram drivers for assistance, and asked in rather basic French what time the tram to Geneva would be. He rattled something off in French, which had something to do with the platforms. I asked if he spoke English. Non. German? Non. He laughed, and then said in perfect English that it could be either platform and would be there in 2 or 3 minutes. Thank you.

I waited for the next tram, which arrived soon. It was to Carouge, and I had no idea which stop to get off at. Nothing stated ‘central’ or ‘gare’, which would have been slightly useful. I ended up staying on until the end of the line, where I finally found a map.

On the journey, a mum and her baby boarded the tram. For some reason the little girl seemed very interested in me, and we played peek-a-boo until they departed the tram. The little girl waved to me as they left, and the mother had completely ignored the whole thing.

Once at Carouge Rondeau, I discovered a map that said I should get off at Bel-Air and there was another tram to Gare Cornavin. I disembarked at Bel-Air, and discovered a Body Shop opposite the tram stop. I had to go in, and had a look around. The prices were crazy. The mini hand cleansers and shower creams were about 7 francs each, and my favourite eau de toilette was almost 50 francs. I spritzed myself with some of the eau de toilette (Madagascan Vanilla, if you’re curious) and promptly left. On the bright side, I now smell lovely.

I headed in the direction the tram had gone, and ended up very near the Jet d’Eau, which we had visited last night. I asked a jewellery store security guard ‘parlez-vous anglais?’ to which he said ‘a little bit’. Good enough for me. I asked how to get to the station, and he gave me easy to follow directions, and sure enough, about ten minutes later, I arrived at the station.

I was planning to take the Zurich train via Martigny, but since I didn’t get to the station until about 4pm I decided to take the first train that went to Zurich. It departed at 16:18 and we are currently making our way through countryside (and some more industrial areas) to the German speaking area of Switzerland.

At long last I will be able to comprehend what is being said…

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