Wednesday Wander – If You Could Be Anywhere…

if-you-could-be-anywhereIt’s Wednesday, so time for my usual Wander, and it’s also day twenty-eight of the 30 Day Writing Challenge. Today’s prompt is: If.

Initially, I considered the Rudyard Kipling poem If, and doing a Wander related to that. But Kipling was so well-travelled I couldn’t really settle on one place, and unfortunately I’ve not yet been to India, the place with which he is most often associated. Then I considered – if I could be anywhere, where would I be?

This was a tough question to answer. At the moment, I’m pretty happy where I am. And if I did go anywhere it would be somewhere I’ve not visited before, so I couldn’t post about it anyway. I decided to look back through my posts for inspiration, and realised I’ve taken 54 Wednesday Wanders so far – just over a year’s worth of posts! So, as it’s the last Wander of 2016, I decided to look back at the top ten most popular posts, based upon the number of likes, and leave the answer up to you. If you could be anywhere, where would you be?

Starting with the tenth most popular, here is the list of favourites for the year:

The Lion Monument, Lucerne, Switzerland

The Twelve Apostles, Australia

Surfers Paradise, Australia

Coventry Cathedral, Coventry, England

El Morro, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Manyana Beach, Australia

Stonehenge, England

Paris, France

Ancient Rome, Italy

And the number one post was:

Niagara Falls, Canada

Thanks for coming along with me on my Wednesday Wanders – I’ve seen a bit of the world but there’s still a lot for me to see, so I’ll keep posting as long as I have places to share

See you next year! xx


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Wednesday Wander – Lion Monument, Lucerne, Switzerland

lion-monumentThe Wednesday Wander is back! After two weeks off due firstly to an ongoing series of posts, then to me being too ill to post anything at all, I’m back to wander the world (the bit I’ve seen of it, anyway). This week, I’m wandering to Switzerland, to a melancholy monument carved into a cliff face above a small lake. This is the Lion Monument, Lucerne.

Carved around 1820, the monument was designed by famed Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen, and sculpted by Lukas Ahorn. It is dedicated to a regiment of Swiss Guards killed defending the French Royal family during the French Revolution. The guards were part of the King’s household prior to the Revolution, and followed the family to the Tuileries Palace in Paris after they were forced to leave Versailles in 1791. On August 10, 1792, revolutionaries stormed the palace. Overwhelmed by superior numbers and running low on ammunition, the guards were massacred by the mob, even after they had surrendered.

The carving at the top can be translated to read ‘To the fidelity and bravery of the Swiss.’ The monument itself is huge, more than thirteen metres across, and its pale reflection is a poignant reminder of lives lost centuries before. I remember it being a serene place, dappled by leaf shadows and sunlight, an oasis of peace carved from war and revolution, and it appears that not much has changed since it was made. In 1880, Mark Twain described the Lion Monument as follows:

Around about are green trees and grass. The place is a sheltered, reposeful woodland nook, remote from noise and stir and confusion — and all this is fitting, for lions do die in such places, and not on granite pedestals in public squares fenced with fancy iron railings. The Lion of Lucerne would be impressive anywhere, but nowhere so impressive as where he is.

Thanks for coming on another Wednesday Wander with me – see you next week!