You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Young William (or Will; or Bill; Billy, at a need; but never Willie!) is tagging along with his Mum on a visit to childhood Stomping Grounds.
Marlowe spent her formative years (0-7) in Leysin, and it's past time for William to see what all that nostalgia is all about.
We're staying in town with Ariane at her B+B Ermina, and starting our hike from Les Fers a few kilometres out.
Les Diablerets just over the way
The Tour de Famelon above us, beckoning
The carpark at the restaurant of Les Fers.
Our party is progressing, Marlowe, Lisa, and Kristin, with William amusing himself as best he may till it's over.
William is impatient at the pace of the Old Folks, so Marlowe hurries him along to prevent him from insulting us.
William is developing a taste for hiking.
There is a lot of social catching-up to do, too.
Lisa and Kristin
William longs to be off on his own.
Lisa and Kristin
Panorama: Les Diablerets
In the other direction, the Tour de Mayen, and Dessus Corbex
William calming down a bit after his ascent
A somewhat closer view of the Tour de Famelon
Lisa and Kristin
Kristin handing out the biscuits
William and his biscuit
And the promise of still more biscuits
Noticing that the biscuits are all gone
Mastering the art of walking with a ski pole
The trick is to get just the right length.
Dinner at the Fromagerie in the lower village of Leysin (built with wood recovered from ancient chalets into the concrete of the old Coop market) -- a wonderful place, and with the Museum of Old Leysin upstairs.
Lisa and Marlowe
William in La Fromagerie
William and Marlowe in La Fromagerie (as every night, they're making cheese in the background)
Breakfast at the Chalets Ermina
From our room in Chalet Ermina 2, looking at Chalet Ermina 1 (connected by a tunnel, in fact), with workmen repairing the patio stones below us.
William trying to sit still
Always fascinated by workmen
Looking for new worlds to conquer
Catching up on the news
Chalet Pollux in Leysin, Marlowe's home in the early years
The trees are "new" and so are the flags, but otherwise . . .
quite nostalgically similar.
The path out to Nid d'Aigle, the eagle's nest, overlooking the valley of the Rhône
William as Dead Weight
The Nid d'Aigle
The mouth of the Rhône, and Lake Geneva
The mountains across the way, chiefly the Cornettes de Bise and the Jumelles
Hiking back, on a path much improved since the old days
A rock of evil memory -- I broke my foot on it at high speed, 9 August 1988, and took the better part of a year to get it right again.
The Grand Hotel of Leysin, formerly all sorts of things, beginning in the 1890s, then the American College of Switzerland from 1981 to 1991, then a branch of Schiller International University until a few years ago, and now, finally, restored to its former grandeur, as the "Belle Epoque", by the Leysin American School for its International Baccalaureate (IB) programme.
A formidable job of restoration and renovation
And La Pyrole, formerly our ACS Library, apparently now converted to a private residence associated with the school
Bag's End, where Marlowe's mom lived for a while back in the old days. This is our trailhead today.
Just down the hill -- Villa Florence, where Marlowe dwelt for her first year or two.
The Prafandaz restaurant
A new picnic ground near Prafandaz, overlooking Lake Geneva
Who's the finicky eater?
Who runs off waving his arms all round?
Breakfast with Ariane at Chalet Ermina
Kristin and Ariane -- we're coming back in two weeks' time.
A last Leysin-ish walk at the Lac des Chavonnes, near La Chamossaire on the far side of the valley
The Lac des Chavonnes (low tide)
William in the papoose
Leysin's Tour de Mayen in the distance
Leysin towers in the distance (Tour d'Aï, Tour de Mayen, Sur les Truex, and Tour de Famelon), Mont d'Or on the right
Les Lagots farm (1717m) and Les Diablerets on the horizon
William loves dead leaves.
Tour de Famelon
Lac des Chavonnes at the end of the summer
Back up the hillside (William doubtful)
Kristin encouraging William to have a go at it.