Wyatt Blake’s Trip of a Lifetime to Switzerland Was Full of Surprises

When it came time for Software Engineering Architect Wyatt Blake to plan his 10-year Trip of a Lifetime, he and his wife enlisted the help of a travel agent to book flights, schedule transportation, arrange their accommodations and find a tour group that would give them access to the sights they wanted to see.

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“We chose Switzerland for its beautiful scenery and waterfalls,” Wyatt said. “Our kids grew up in flat Florida, so they like to see hills. The Matterhorn, in particular, piqued their interest.”

But before they even left Florida, they were met with the first surprise of their trip.

“Our travel agent kept referring to our flight as a ‘night flight,’” Wyatt said. “She said it repeatedly—‘night flight.’”

So, the day they were scheduled to leave for Switzerland, Wyatt, his wife, daughter and two sons ate lunch, finished their last-minute packing and loaded into the car to drive to Miami to catch their eleven o’clock flight.

When they got to the airport, thinking they were three hours early for their flight, they learned their flight had left without them—at eleven o’clock that morning.

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The ticketing agents were sympathetic, but ultimately said there was nothing they could do because the trip had been booked through a travel agent. So, they wound up purchasing five new tickets and leaving a day later than they’d originally planned.

Then, when they landed in Zurich, they learned that their hotel didn’t have air conditioning—that most hotels in Switzerland, in fact, don’t have air conditioning.

“Coming from Florida, that made us a little nervous,” Wyatt said. “And while normally you’re not supposed to need air conditioning in Switzerland, they were having a record heat wave when we were there.”

When it was time to travel from Zurich to their next stop, Wyatt and his family were met with another surprise. What they thought was supposed to be a train trip from one city to another turned out to be a ride on a bus.

Undeterred, the Blake family rode the bus to Interlaken where they spent one night before continuing on to Zermatt, a small mountain village known for its views of the Matterhorn.

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“Our two days in Zermatt were our favorite,” Wyatt said. “We hiked up to the entry of the gondola and had pizza at a restaurant in the shadow of the Matterhorn. The views were fantastic on the ride up, and then at the top, we went to the lookout, and my son was overcome by the beauty. He surprised me by tearing up a bit and thanking me for the trip.”

From Zermatt, they finally got to the promised train portion of their trip. Advertised as one of the most scenic train rides in the world, The Glacier Express crossed 291 bridges and went through 91 tunnels on its eight-hour trip to St. Moritz. The three-course meal that was served while they watched the beautiful countryside go by was an added bonus.

After a day spent in St. Moritz with a local tour guide, another bus was waiting to take Wyatt and his family to Bad Ragaz.

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“Bad Ragaz had the best hotel we stayed at during our trip,” Wyatt said. “They also didn’t have air conditioning, but they did have thermal baths with water from the Tamina Gorge.”

From Bad Ragaz, it was time to take the bus back to the airport in Zurich.

“As much as we would have liked to stay in Switzerland a little longer,” Wyatt said, “we made sure to show up on time for that flight.”

For every five years of employment with Arthrex, employees are eligible for a company-paid Trip of a Lifetime to recognize their dedication. Look for more Trip of a Lifetime highlights on the Arthrex Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn pages.

Category: Trips of a Lifetime