night had well fallen when we pulled into zermatt and though we couldn't wholly see the mountains ringing the village, we could feel them. they are that grand. they are that magnificent.
zermatt is hypnotically beautiful: dark timber chalets, car-free streets, two horse open sleighs, frozen rivers, frozen everything, bubbling fondue pots, endless bratwurst and beer, cozy-glowing cafés, cherry red shutters, faintly waving flags, snow falling like glitter, a hotel that would do well in a wes anderson film, the old fashioned romance of a puff of chimney smoke. like a postcard from a dream about a ski town. better.
all paths lead to the matterhorn standing (peacefully, wildly) sentinel over town. though we were here for the sights, and not for the slopes, it was by lift that we got around. we boarded a cable car in the heart of town and rode all the way to the highest station in all of europe. in one sweeping view, you can see the tallest mountains of italy, france, and switzerland. something wild: the elements and thin air at this great height are too extreme for tiny bubs, and so we each perched with francis in the café at the next-to-last stop while the other journeyed to the very top. in the hour that stretched between our individual rides, the weather shifted from a bluebird sky to a veil of snow. no matter, our reports back were the same: we stood in awe. we stood without breath.