Thursday, August 1, 2013

1st of August Weggli on the Swiss National Day

1st of August is the Swiss National Day to commemorate the formation of Switzerland in 1291. People can happily enjoy this day as a public holiday surprisingly recently, only since 1994.

Go and pick the flowers fresh from the field yourself, trust in a Swiss way.

The weather has been on our side today, temperatures reaching 30Celsius (86F).
To start the festivities we thought it appropriate to go and pick some gladiolas from the self-service flower field nearby. One picks as many sun flowers, gladiolas, lilies ... or tulips in spring for that matter ... and leaves the right amount of francs in a box at the edge of the field.

It is a tradition that the farmers in the Alps have a brunch on the 1st of August. The same tradition has been brought to the city at the main Cathedral square. Anyone who wishes to climb the the stairs to the Cathedral tower can tank some Swiss energy before or after from a brunch in the morning or a typical Bratwurst throughout the day.

A recycling point for the glasses or plates in the refreshment tent

1st August Weggen, delicious buns

For sure the 1st August Weggli is a must on this day. It is a special soft and buttery bun with a cross cut into it on top and a small Swiss flag. It is simple but actually tastes pretty delicious. And the smell of this small bread is such as wanting to stick my nose into it and take a deep healing breath...or two...before biting into it.I have a bit of a freak flag on breads. 2013 is my year of experimenting with sourdough, but that' a story for another time.

Visitors queueing in front of the Bundeshaus

The Swiss Parliament, the Bundeshaus, is open on this national holiday for anyone who wants to take a peek at the magnificent building, walk in its corridors of power or sit in one of the two halls. On the 1st of August the Swiss chocolate masters are presenting a sweet surprise to the visitors of the Bundeshaus.

The scenic place where Switzerland was "born"

One for all and all for one says the ceiling

A view from a Parliament window opens to the public pool of the Swiss capital

A rather small and modest cafe in the Parliament building in Bern

There are circa 40 chocolates to choose from, a gift from the Swiss choclatiers

There are various celebrations throughout the day everywhere. The cream on the top of the celebration is the fireworks at night, in 6 scenes and the spectacle goes on for about 20 minutes. I believe it is now sponsored by some of the big companies as nowadays it is pretty hard to organise fireworks for the tax payers´ hard earned money.
The most memorable sight is the smiley design at the very end. Everyone will rember that with a somile on their own face. Unfortunately it was impossible to hit the button on my camera at the right moment to capture that smiley.

1st August Fireworks in Bern 2013

1. August Feuerwerk, Bern 2013