Reaching Geneva

Geneva, my first on-site city. It makes me smile, for, it has given me countless nice memories. And it is like my second home after my India.

Mumbai-Amsterdam-Geneva. That was the route I was taking. Though I was traveling alone, unlike many first time overseas travelers I was not nervous at all. I was excited. New place, new work and new challenge. I just wanted to run away from Mumbai because it was mid August, raining horribly and I hate Mumbai rains and roads.

At the airport all usual questions were asked.. who packed your luggage, are you carrying a knife etc. I had a suitcase and a rucksack besides my handbag. No hugging/kissing/crying and last minute advice for me as my family was in Delhi. Only people came to see me off was the family I was staying with.

The flight was comfortable and on time.. nearly 8 hours to reach Amsterdam. I didn’t have any difficulty with seat-belt, overhead indicators or closing/ opening of washroom door. I knew all. The only thing that really irritates me is blocking of my ears and when the airplane decides to descend at a speed which starts hinting you through your stomach to say your final prayers.

I slept for sometime as next day was Monday and I had to report to duty (Ohh how much I hate my SBU head for that). The connecting flight from Amsterdam was in 50 minutes, so not much time wasted there.
At Geneva airport one of my seniors had come to receive me.

After waiting for good one hour for my luggage (there were many like me), I came to know that due to overloading at Amsterdam, my suitcase along with many other passengers’ was held back, to be sent within 24 hours to Geneva. They said this was a normal practice due to heavy traffic within Europe.

One can imagine my predicament as within two hours of landing I was supposed to be in office and there I was standing confused in jeans and a Tee without a single set of extra clothes with me !! However, I had learnt my lesson, after that started carrying one set of clothes on my person.

The Geneva airport is very small compared to other international airports like Frankfurt, Sydney, Singapore or Amsterdam. I found it extremely clean and shining. In fact whole of Switzerland is so pure and clean.


Can you see those painted small birds at the ceiling ? They looked  so fascinating. Restrooms are on the right.

Come out of the arrival section and you have to pay for using the restrooms. That’s what I also did. My first use of foreign currency abroad was for using this facility. But I didn’t mind paying because they had kept it absolute sparkling clean and dry. Going from India to Switzerland, everything looked so good and beautiful. 🙂

The airport has an underground railway station from where frequent trains run to Geneva city and other cities of Switzerland and also to neighbouring countries. Come out of the building and you have bus service connecting to different parts of Geneva.

But we took a cab (first time in my life I sat in Merc, In Geneva most cabs are Mercedes Benz) directly to the place where I was supposed to stay with other colleagues in a rented apartment, very close to the lake.

I looked outside and smiled. The weather was wonderful. Geneva was welcoming me with open arms…

14 thoughts on “Reaching Geneva

  1. Wow! What a place to be in. Your first time travel is much similar to mine too. I can very well relate tot that words you mentioned – “I just wanted to run away from…” NOt any different were my thoughts either at the time of going to US for a year.

  2. Good one… My first Merc-ride was also a cab-ride 😉

    I think in general european cities have better public transport system.

    Any visits to UN buildings?

  3. Ajeya,
    Thanks for your visit. Glad to know that I am not the only one to have such thoughts. At that time many people called me a runaway. 🙂

    Fleiger,
    He He@Merc-ride.

    Yes, the whole of Europe is very small and so well connected that they ought to have excellent transport system. You’ll come to know this from my future posts.

    Any visits to UN buildings?.. Hang on you impatient ! And don’t try to polish your knowledge on Geneva, you’ll get everything here.

    BTW, I noticed, you’ve dyed your hair and changed your hair style. ;

  4. oh u are sooo brave!
    my first time travel was full of tears 😛
    the photos look sooo cool!!
    ewww dyes hair? lol

  5. I like to be a know-all 😉

    Dyed my hair? Lemme get a mirror… I can’t pull my hair enough to see them *ouch*

  6. Nikichan,
    Thank you. Slowly, you’ll come to know how brave I am. 🙂

    Fleiger,
    Yeah, I know you can’t sit quietly without knowing, so pls carry on. Here, on this blog you’ll find my views and experiences about the places. Keep watching !!

    Mirror ? See your picture, you look so different.

    Mathew,
    Happy to know that. Where all are you planning to visit ?

  7. Exactly what I was looking for…we (me and my husband) are in the process of planning a trip to Switz and your posts should be helpful. Do you have any recommendations for must-visit places ? We are flying into Zurich for 10 days.

  8. Pooja,
    First, welcome to my blog. I have seen you many times on Mridula’s blog.

    On your query..Well, I’ll speak about all the places in detail but that will take time. Pls refer to swiss map on my left sidebar.

    Well, it depends when are you planning the trip. If it is in March-April, don’t miss the mountains. They are still full of snow.
    Go to Jungfraujoch..highest pt of Europe. It also has highest post office in Europe and a ice museum.

    Among cities, see Zurich city. Geneva is famous for lake, flower clock and water jet. Also Interlaken (City of 2 lakes famous for Indian film shootings) and Luzern.

    Go to Lugano.. it is almost in Italy.. it is mini Switzerland. If you remember the movie ‘Guru'(not sure of name now) starring Rishi Kapoor/Sridevi singing a song. I have plenty of photos of it, will cover in 2 posts.

    I think I have told you an itinerary for more than 10 days. 🙂

    One more thing. On cash part. Though they accept Euros but will return the change in CHF as they are not a part of European Communion.

    Bon Voyage !!

  9. BTR,
    Yes, you can see in my sidebar, I have started writing about lessons learnt. That was the first lesson I learnt.

    Yes, I found Geneva quite welcoming.

    am thinking of same….lets see…. Go for it !! You will just fall in love with the place. After staying there for one year, I didn’t want to come back solely for its natural beauty.

  10. ok so lost your baggage in transit….yeah thats the first rule of travel…never faced this problem – my very good friend ( seasoned traveller advised me on these good tips) so always carry a change of clothes , this helps if by any chance you miss your flight as well!!

    Yeah I can imagine Geneva saying big hi to you…some countries have that…look about them !!

    I have been invited by my friend who is in UN to come and trek some of the mountain sides…..am thinking of same….lets see….!

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