Well needless to say (this is me we're talking about), its not quite like that. For starters, Himself is hard at work (my suspicions of him whiling away hours in the local bar were quite unfounded), so I have been providing support services in the form of clean underpants and cheese sarnies. There's no snow down here in the valley and very little sunshine either. The driving wind makes stepping outside, even for a second, unpleasant to say the least, so a combination of workload and weather has meant the only time I've been out, has been for a trip to the local supermarket. And as Himself had to drive me (the brakes on the van are failing), I was starting to feel like an Eastern European housewife.
Yesterday there was a break in the incessant wind and the sun came out. I decided that I would get some benefit from my 'break' (ha ha) and get out there, fill my lungs with clean alpine air and admire some stunning alpine scenery.
I took the 17 year old with me, on the grounds that I didn't have a dog to hand and that it would Do Him Good. He doesn't really do walking but ambled along happily enough for the first half an hour. We spotted a lake in the valley below and decided to head down towards it. All was still very pleasant, the sun was shining and the birds were singing. When we reached the lake, we discovered it was actually a hydro electric plant and that we couldn't get anywhere near it. So the plan of strolling round the shore went out of the window. This was the point when I started to grasp the basic flaw about walking in the Alps. There are bloody hills everywhere. We'd been walking downhill for an hour so retracing our steps would have meant a horrendous slog uphill.
Then I spotted a footpath alongside the river, with a sign indicating that if we followed the trail for 1h40, we'd get to a nearby village. Having persuaded the 17 year old that walking on the flat was a better plan than retracing our steps, we set off. The trail may well have taken that time - if you were a member of an elite military unit and were just back from a weeks advanced fitness training. After two hours, we were covered in scratches, bruises and had aching limbs from all the rocky uphill sections. Obviously it didn't follow the river bank but instead took us on a track that would have been fine, if you were a goat.
It was getting colder and the sun was going down. We were still in some bit of forest, we'd lost the main path and of course, we had nothing to eat or drink. What we did have was my new super whizzy Iphone complete with maps, a compass and all sorts. Did I remember to use it? Of course not.
By some miracle, we eventually emerged in someone's garden and having nervously skirted round the chained up guard dog, we staggered onto a road. At this point I did remember the phone and called Himself, who set off to find us. Obviously I managed to give him totally wrong directions so the 17 year old and I, were left standing shivering at the roadside for some time. The husband is still laughing himself stupid at my complete and utter inability to use any piece of technology and keeps making jokes about applications called 'I lost' and 'I stupid' and the 17 year old is highly unlikely to ever agree to come for a walk again.