60 Years Ago Today

Sunday, 20 July 1952:

Up at 7:15 a.m. all four of us had to bathe in the wash bowl. Alice and Carol had the best turn at the wash basin. Then we ate breakfast at the hotel. Song practice was scheduled at 8 a.m. but the sopranos were late. So I went over to the church with Elders Merrill and Bradshaw.

Chorus practice started at 9 a.m. Then I wandered out into the garden to practice my talk. I was hardly nervous at all. Church began at 10 a.m. with Dr. Rogers first on our program and then the sextet singing group. However, Alice didn’t sing. Virginia talked and then yours truly was next.

I’m sorry to admit that I didn’t know it as well as I could have. Afterwards the chorus sang, You’ll Never Walk Alone and Alene and Betty talked. Both of them did well. Then Florence sang, Herr Watkins talked, chorus sang America and the Branch President talked with Elder Merrill translating. He thanked us for the program, and told us how wonderful it was to have us there and wished us a pleasant trip. The clerk took care of business and the meeting lasted over the allotted time.

We dashed back to the hotel to get our bags down the stairs. Then we went to eat at a cute restaurant down the street. I had my first birchermussli. At the bus members and missionaries were there to see us off. I got a picture of the missionaries and our whole group by the bus.

On our way to Basel, I spied a tank barricade along railroad tracks. In Basel we stayed at another Hotel Victoria. It was as nice as the other Hotel Victorias had been. We cleaned up and left to visit the mission home about 5 or 5:30 p.m. Then we walked down past the Münster Cathedral that had green vines on the front. I spotted the mission home that was a big white house. It was comfortable, modern and clean, just like home.

I met Dr. Kezerean’s brother, Ethelyn Taylor, Nola Allerman, Palowski, and other new missionaries. Brother Meyer and his mother were from South Africa. President and Mrs. Bringhurst found the Deseret News for the last month and we really had a field day with the news from home.

We were off to church with the whole crew strung out over several blocks. Missionaries lined up to greet us. There was an Elder Wendell Stucki from Rexburg. The group did a repeat performance of the morning program. Herr Rogers introduced us all again and we had a great time. I don’t think I did any better on my talk or even as well as I had done in the morning program. However, I did catch a few pronunciation errors which Herr Rogers brought to my attention. President Bringhurst seemed quite thrilled with all our talks.

After church I met one little lady who was related to or knows Jack Sommer in Rexburg and another one who knows someone I didn’t know. I met a little man and his wife who were coming to Ricks College to work in about three months. They wrote their names for me on the back of my talk. As we were leaving I talked to a man whose daughter was in Salt Lake. I had to dash off to get to the hotel for dinner at 9 p.m.

I was almost the last one around so Herr Rogers let me ride in President Bringhurst’s car with them. We drove to the hotel and the chicken was really delicious. Afterwards, I walked over to the station across the street to see about getting my money changed. Unfortunately it had closed five minutes earlier. So I went for a walk down to the Rhine with Elder Telford. We saw the monument to the Swisse by the same sculptor who had made the Statue of Liberty. The Rhine River looked quite beautiful at night. We talked for awhile and then strolled back home past the Migros shopping center.

Traveler Describes Scenic Wonders of Switzerland

Editor’s note: This is another in the series of articles being written by Mrs. Afton A. Hansen of Provo, who is touring Europe with a group of college students.

Dear Friends;
Would you like to hear something about the Jungfrau (mountain) and the Glacier Garden before you leave Switzerland in world travel with us?

From the town of Interlaken, on a clear day, the top of Jungfrau can easily be seen. For us today, it is veiled in cloudy mystery with peaks so high that they seem to belong more to heaven than to earth.

As we wind our way up on the electrically powered cog by cog railway, we catch glimpses through the clouds of the mighty Jungfrau. Three railway systems undertake the ascent. Twice, do we change trains and get a better view of the abundant Alpine flowers and cream colored cows, shaking their tinkling bells, as well as the patted foot path, for those who have the courage to take it on foot. It is all a peaceful combination of heaven and earth.

Safety Devices
Traveling at a speed of about six miles per hour both going up and coming down, we feel the intimacy of the atmosphere around us. Even though we do have faith in the engineers of these mountain-railways, we are happy to learn of the many automatic breaks and safety devices. These Swiss engineers have planned mountain railways through the world. This particular project was ten years in the making.

Several times on the way up we stopped at viewing stations which are masterpieces in the art of chiseling. The last stop opens up into a well-lighted reception room, dining room, bedrooms for guests, lounge, store, rest rooms, and a terrace where our eyes are almost blinded by the white brilliance of the largest glacier in Europe, the great Aletsch, which is 15½ miles long and can be seen in almost its entire length.

A few minutes easy walk in the snow leads to a point overlooking the gruesome depths of another glacier, Guggi, where shining masses of green hued ice open into deep crevasses. A sound as of a booming cannon is heard when enormous blocks of ice break from the masses and dash to a thousand pieces as they roar and tumble down the steep slopes. Twenty glaciers in all nestle around these peaks of dark rock which stand out so vividly against the intense blue of the sky.

Intrepid Climbers
Jungfrau jock (saddle) station is 11,340 feet above sea level, but these intrepid alpine climbers go on for another 24 hours to reach the top.

Skating on the aqua colored crystal floor of the ice palace, felt like skating in a refrigerator. Nature’s refrigerator, however, is most beautiful with lighted rooms and halls, which contain objects carved from ice. There is a car, stove, vase of flowers, Swiss flag and many others.
A sleigh ride, behind Eskimo dogs, over the glacier was also a delight. What a day it was.

Having seen such beautiful tres jolie and sehr schon scenes and objects, we were dubious about any interest a glacial garden could have for us, especially after seeing snow of years packed around the Jungfrau and Matterhorn.

Gingerly we paid our franc to go inside, where at once we realized that this was different. Here was evidence, samples and remains in reality, in relief map, and pictures, dating from the great Ice Age, a period in the history of our globe which takes us far back beyond oldest tradition and historical records; when ice, of about 3000 feet in depth covered the area. In 1842, by mere chance, the first glacier was discovered. It is a caldron shaped cavity, which owes its existence to the friction of a large stone driven round and round by the force of water currents cascading down the icy crevasses and at the same time polishing themselves.

A few feet from the first pit are found other and larger glacier mills, the largest being about 26 feet in diameter and about 52 feet in depth, with the large smooth bolder in the bottom.

Original Finds
In the museum are original finds from a cavern on Rigi Mountain near by which give evidence of the ethical and religious life of man who lived there 520,000 to 20,000 years ago.
Switzerland must be a glorious spot for geologists and archaeologist.

These student and professors of Brigham Young University are really stretching their language wings, giving most excellent programs of music and speech, in Deutsch, to the great delight of local members of the LDS Church.

Sunday evening at Basel, more than 600 people were in attendance in their beautiful chapel. A picnic party hike given for us by Zurich church members offered us a sample of the ease with which Swiss people saunter along the steep mountain trails, for enjoyable pastime. Evening bells from many towers chimed the hour and the rhythm of the hikers.

As a parting glimpse of Switzerland, we visited the Goetheanum, a school for spiritual activity in science and art, at Cornach. This and other buildings are built to emphasize the rhythm and harmony of nature, with no right angles. Their philosophy is based on Goethe’s theory and knowledge, and depicts the struggle between idealism and materialism.

A thought picked up en route is that—one does not become educated by way of institution or formal act of learning alone, but also by self education and that education like virtue is its own reward. Sojourn in Switzerland is an education.


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