Via Ferrata in Switzerland

During our first trip to Switzerland, we learned about Via Ferratas from Jen's cousin, Shannon. Unfortunately, it was too cold and late in the season for us to go. 

Since the weather was really nice this time, Shannon offered to take us and it was SO worth it!  

A Via Ferrata is a route making method to make passage easier and more secure. It’s done by a installing steel steps, handles, ladder rungs, and a steel cable in places where the trail steepens. Now, they are used for adventure seeker trying to explore the mountains in a different way.

We woke up early morning to meet up with Shannon and her boyfriend, Oleg.  We drove for about 2 hours and took 2 cable cars up the mountain to Murren where we had lunch in a plaza overlooking the valley.

After lunch, Oleg left us to go paragliding while we went to rent equipment for the Via Ferrata.  

Here are some interesting facts: 
 - Length: 2.2 km
 - Starts in Murren, 1670m above the valley
 - Ends in Gimmelwald, 1370m above the valley
 - Length of the Nepal bridge: 80m

One unique thing about this particular Via Ferrata is that it actually descends about 300m to the end point, whereas via ferratas typically ascend to their end location.  

Here are some of the views along the way

Part way through, we encountered 3 base jumpers just as they were preparing to leap from a base jumping platform.  

Our group was attached to the mountain with thick metal ropes and we felt super nervous just walking out to look over the platform!!  It was just incredibly crazy to actually see people leaping off the edge without any hesitation!

After a couple of hours we finished and met up with Oleg in Gimmewald. We then walked through the valley soaking in more amazing views before going for dinner at Shannon’s and Oleg’s favourite burger joint in Interlaken (Hüsi Bierhaus).

We spent the entire day amazed at the non-stop breathtaking views.  It's such a beautiful country and we had such a great time!   

Many thanks to Shannon and Oleg for being our guides on such a fun and awesome adventure!!

Science Fiction Party

While in Sri Lanka, we met up with our Swiss friends, Fabian and Iris, and they invited us to their place for another epic Iris Party - Episode 2. The moment Dom heard the theme for her birthday party was "Science Fiction", the tickets were booked.. in fact, thinking back, maybe they didn't invite us.. maybe Dom actually invited himself :P. 

Finding a costume for a party when you're not in your hometown is tricky. Different costume ideas crossed our minds (Dom was originally thinking of going has Optimus Prime!), but after considering our limited time to finding the perfect materials and put it all together, we both decided to go as Jawas. 

A lot of fun went into preparing for the party:

We also met one of Fabian’s friend Michael (dressed as a character from Men in Black) who had just released this cool new music video: 

Steampunk Party

We happened to be in Zurich during Iris's birthday.  Lucky for Dom, she wanted to have a "steampunk" themed party.  Steampunk is a genre of science fiction inspired by 19th-century steam-powered machinery and fashion. 

We didn't bring any costumes to Zurich, so with the help of Yannis, Iris, and Fabian, we all started designing/making our costumes and decorations for the party.  We all focussed our attention on weapons first and spent an entire day creating them out of random things including cardboard, old plastic containers, spray cans, nerf guns, and.. a saw! 

Jen also wrote an app for Yannis so he could put an iPad inside of his costume.  The app had a metal door that he could slide open to reveal his beating heart. 

On the day of the party, Fabian airbrushed some body-art on for us and it was time to put everything together.. Et voilà...

The rest of Iris and Fabian's friends arrived a short time later.  We all had a really great night!

Happy Birthday Iris! :)


On one weekend, we decided to rent a car to visit a city called Luzern.  We walked around the cute storybook town and its surrounding wall while shopping for accessories for our Steampunk costumes.  We also happened to be there during an air-show and boat race, so the town was just buzzing with people, despite the gloomy weather!

Luzern was also hosting a local winter festival where we got to sample some authentic raclette!!  Here, they put a special blend of spices on top of the cheese which enhance the flavour :)  Unfortunately the experience somewhat destroyed our previous love for home-raclette as the real thing was SO much better!  

Dom's first Unicorn

As you probably know, unicorns are very rare.  What is less known is that the lifecycle of unicorns are similar to butterflies in that they have multiple stages. In the unicorn's case, the stages are: grober, cocoon, and unicorn.  

For Dom's first graffiti, he decided to introduce the grober to the world.  We went to Richterswil, where Fabian’s friend had a legal wall that we could create our very first official street art on.  

Vlad did the elephant, Dom did the grober, Bane did the squid, Gabriel did the lettering, and Pest did the skull. 
Here are some photos of the creations in-progress.

Chur and Crestasee

For Iris's birthday, Fabian organized a surprise dinner at a gourmet restaurant in a city called Chur (where Iris works during the week).  The surprise was a great success as she had no idea that a bunch of us were heading down to Chur for the dinner!  Since game-meat was in season, we ate a delicious set-menu... the waiter's translation of what we were eating was "Bambi", "Bambi's mom", and "Pumba".  

Prior to the dinner, we decided to take the day off to meet up with Fabian and Yannis who were in already in Chur for a kids graffiti workshop.  The workshop was at a school where, just a couple of weeks ago, they had just finished one of their biggest works!

Since we had some time before dinner, we decided to head to the mountains for a short hike.  Fabian brought us to a favourite local spot called Crestasee.  The trees had already started changing colours so the scenery was gorgeous.  

The lake had a rope swing, so we did a few swings on it until Fabian and Yannis mustered up the courage to actually jump in!  Being October, the water was really.. NOT.. warm!!  

Dom and Yannis had rock-skipping and other rock-throwing competitions :), while Fabian had a great time taking some amazing photos!

Learning Graffiti

During our visit, we had an amazing opportunity to learn graffiti with Fabian (Bane) and Yannis (Pest)!  

Wuma, a paint store near Landquart, Switzerland, hosted a free "open-wall" graffiti day.  Pest gave us a lesson on the basic techniques, and then Dom started on a small graffiti on the practice wall to get a feel for how the cans work. He tried some lettering - the word “Beyond” (in case you can't read it ;)) 

Jen's cousin and boyfriend, Shannon & Oleg, also made it out to the event along with their friends, Vlad & Becky, who were visiting from the U.S.  We found out that Vlad is an artist at Pixar, so he was also excited to try graffiti for the first time!

After a bit of practice, the next step was to paint over the first graffiti with an even bigger one!  With help from Pest and Vlad, the first-ever “Digital Nomads” tag came to fruition.  

Bane also worked on a piece with one of his young little students:

The end product from the practice wall:

A bunch of Bane's "older" students (they looked around 10-12 years old), worked together to complete this piece on the side wall of the Wuma building:

During the event, Wuma also served us wine, beer, baked treats, and a huge vat of really yummy "Gerstensuppe", a traditional barley soup common in this area.

It was such a beautiful warm day and the event was so much fun!  Thanks to both Pest and Bane for the opportunity (and the much needed graffiti help! :)).


During our trip to Kos we met up with our Kitesurfing Swiss friends Elias and Fabian again!  Fabian invited us to visit Switzerland and stay at their home... little did he know that we would actually take his offer seriously!! :P  

Within a couple of months, we found ourselves in Switzerland - Elias was kind enough to pick us up from the airport and drive us to Fabian's house where we finally met Fabian's girlfriend, Iris.  We were also excited to find out that Yannis (Pest) from Cypress (who we also just met in Vietnam this past winter), was also staying with Fabian for a few months while we were there. :)  

We stayed for about 3 weeks and had such a great time with them - working, visiting, eating, drinking, doing graffiti, partying, catching up on movies, etc... what more could you ask for!  :)

Jen's cousin, Shannon and her boyfriend, Oleg, had also moved to Zurich within weeks of our arrival!  We met up with Shannon and she took us on a tour of the campus where she's doing her masters degree.  We also checked out some key areas of Zurich and had a nice thorough tour of Zurich's variety of public transportation options!  Within one evening, we had taken the bus, train, tram, funicular, and ferry boat :)

Of course, we had to check out some food including one of the well-known frankfurter stops in Bellevue, and some typical winter-Zurich heissi marroni (warm roasted chestnuts)!  Yum!!  We discovered that chestnuts actually look like sea urchins, how cool is that!