On the third Monday in April, Zurich celebrates Sechseläuten, the departure of Winter and the arrival of Spring by blowing up (in the festive sense) a snowman and partying in the streets.

Yay for me!  I planned to be in Zurich for Anna Grace’s honors orchestra festival on the following Friday, giving Spring a few days to settle in and pretty up the city for me.

Well, the Sechseläuten failed.


The weekend was wet and cold from arrival to departure, and even the “S” word fell from the sky most of Saturday. I mustered all the enthusiasm I could for sightseeing in the falling crap but fell way short of my usual tempo. Instead, I roamed the city until I became cold or wet, or both, then retreated to my hotel room to catch up on some pleasure reading. (Off topic, I can say that Victoria and Abdul, The True Story of the Queen’s Closest Confidant is a very good read.)

The last of the sunshine before we descended into Epic Sechseläuten Fail.

I took almost all of the photos with sepia, antique or black and white filters to romanticize the dreariness as much as possible.  Nonetheless, Snowman got his revenge.  Enjoy the photos, while I retire to the patio to soak up Vienna’s real spring warmth this afternoon.


The Hauptbahnhof (Main Train Station).







View of the Fraumünster from the Grossmünster, the second of Zurich’s well-known churches. The Framünster houses the famous Marc Chagall stained glass windows, which can be viewed but not photographed.

The “Great Minister” was commissioned by Charlemagne according to legend. The “Lady Minister” across the bridge was commissioned by Charlemagne’s grandson and is given less seniority.