A year ago I was sitting in a train from Utrecht to Berlin. A 6 hour long train ride where you sometimes get the opportunity to meet people and hear their stories. Sometimes I say, because sometimes people don’t talk and you just read a book, try to sleep or just work on your computer. This specific train ride a year ago was one of those that was filled with talking. While people walked in and out the train during this whole trip, there was one woman that was in the cabin with me the whole time. She was a scientist working for the dutch national institute for public health and the environment. This time she was on her way to an international conference in Berlin, where she would talk about the uprise of malaria in Europe and more specifically Greece.
She was apparently originally from Amsterdam, where she had lived a big part of her life, but when she got children, she and her husband decided to move to a more child friendly environment and therefore moved to the more famous green areas around Utrecht. Now that her children were all grown up or almost grown up and she told me that she had never realized up till the moment she moved to these green areas how much she hated trees. She really hated trees, she said with a somehow funny smile. This struck me as a big surprise, this women, very wise and working for the above mentioned institute hated trees? Yes, she explained, ever since she had moved and left the city she had missed the sky, the ability to look at a skyline which appeared to be endless from tall houses. Now she had to look at trees, every day, everywhere, her view vanished and her world had become smaller. This idea that we would never see a skyline again scared me when we decided to move to green Grenoble, since I love the sky, the clouds and the clear views.
Now that we have been living in France on top of a mountain, surrounded by trees, I realize that I didn’t have to fear trees, they are beautiful. The trick is though to find a place where you live high enough to be able to overlook them every now and then.
Today we have spend another day amongst trees and skies, you can find some pictures of todays sights below. We did a big tour around the walnut tree growing area, unfortunately no real hike, since the weather turned on us this weekend. Hike or no hike, the views were breath taking. I can’t imagine going back again to a place without them. But who knows what life will bring, in the meantime we’ll just enjoy the scenery as much as we can and hopefully people visiting us can experience this too. If I would be able to track down this lady from the train, I would offer her to come and see how trees and skies enjoy each others company on the top of the mountains surrounding Grenoble. These pictures below were made around the Gorges du Nan.