Nyon Castle is a medieval fortress on the banks of Lake Geneva.

Nyon Castle is a medieval fortress on the banks of Lake Geneva. Constructed in the 1200’s, it was used as a prison until around 25 years ago. Castles like this one always make me think of Cinderella. I tend to skip around them like a child and expect fairy tale creatures around every corner.

Nyon Castle houses a porcelain museum.

An example of Nyon porcelain.

Nyon Castle houses a porcelain museum. Nyon was one of the first European centers of porcelain. And if I’d known, I never would’ve darkened the door. I’m addicted to dishes. They. Are. Crack.

 An example of porcelain I covet. Who uses covered soup tureens in 2017???

Like any good Southern girl, I assembled my trousseau, and it included a set of Bavarian porcelain. 12 place settings, plus serving pieces. My mother gave me her wedding China from the 1960s, and I wasn’t satisfied until I had 12 place settings and matching serving pieces. I have Christmas china. I own a set of flowery stone wear. Don’t need any more dishes.

AND MY FINGERS TWITCHED THROUGH THIS PLACE OF TORTURE.

I wanted one of everything. I made a list of pieces I liked, figuring I might buy one or two in the shop. NOPENOPENOPE. 240 francs!!!! I left despondent, but not broke.

case for Nyon Castle porcelain

What MTM needs to buy me so that I can carry some porcelain wherever I go.

All three Nyon museums are a joint admission. Only 8 francs. A Swiss bargain!

Turret in Nyon Castle

Turret in sunlight and shadow.

In addition to porcelain, the museum has a small art collection on display. Here, a bust by Canova, one of my favorite sculptors.

bust by Canova in Nyon Castle

Castle acoustics are remarkable. For that reason, Nyon Castle sports a play-as-you-like piano situated for maximum sound penetration. I wish I still played well enough to try it. This guy was brilliant.

Here I am sweating on the train back to Trélex and my room in Maison Binet for my writing residency.

train from Nyon Castle to Trelex Switzerland

Do you like dishes?

How many sets do you have? Tell me in the comments, and let me know I’m not the only one with this problem.

Rumor has it Nyon, Switzerland was founded by Julius Caesar around 44BC, but the site has been occupied since the Neolithic. I'm staying 4 train stops from this haunted town by the lake.

Rumor has it Nyon, Switzerland was founded by Julius Caesar around 44BC, but the site has been occupied since the Neolithic. I’m staying 4 train stops from this haunted town by the lake.

I walked down a narrow passage and heard whispers. Touched Roman walls and lost sense to the grunts of the slaves who built them. Wandered through a castle and expected to see a knight on the circular stair or around the next corner in Nyon, Switzerland.

I say “haunted” because it’s spaces are loud. I walked down a narrow passage and heard whispers. Touched Roman walls and lost sense to the grunts of the slaves who built them. Wandered through a castle and expected to see a knight on the circular stair or around the next corner.

In Nyon, Switzerland, I ordered my first meal in French and only stumbled once. I sat in a park next to the Roman columns and watched a man read a book in the shade.

First glass of wine in almost a week!

I sat in Place de la Chateau and dined like a human instead of a pen intent in a cell. Ordered my first meal in French and only stumbled once. I sat in a park next to the Roman columns and watched a man read a book in the shade. Toured the Museé Romain, and went to the pharmacy and shopped for groceries. Lugged a big fan box onto the train along with my shopping.

I toured the Museé Romain in Nyon, Switzerland.

Sweaty me in the Museé Romain, Nyon

I wanted a steak since it’s coming up on my lady time, but settled for this veal and mushroom ravioli instead. People warned me about how much things cost in Switzerland. With restaurants, they weren’t kidding!! A steak was 48 francs. My ravioli was 32 francs. First courses started at 20 francs. Service is included, because the Swiss pay their restaurant workers a living wage. Still, I won’t be dining out again soon.

I ordered my first meal in French in Nyon, Switzerland, and only stumbled once.

When I’m home, MTM and I have coffee together every day. He FaceTimes now when he’s having his coffee, but I don’t have a way to make coffee in my cell. Worth the 3 franc train ride!

coffee in Nyon, Switzerland

My first decent coffee in Switzerland.

As I type, I’m sitting in my cell enjoying the first few hours of not sweltering since I got here. The only thing I forgot to pack? A swimsuit. I had no idea people swim in Lake Geneva! If you ever head this way during summer, make sure to bring your suit. Especially if Switzerland is experiencing a record-breaking heatwave!!!

Hope you enjoyed hearing about my adventures in Nyon, Switzerland, during my writing residency. I shared pics and info about the nearby town of Trelex in this post. Have you been there? What did you think of it?

Trelex is located on the edge of Jura Mountain Park, between St Cergue and Nyon. I spent about 15 minutes to tour Trelex on foot, and I saw it all!

I spent much of my first Switzerland residency day getting acquainted. With my accommodations. With the other residents. With the village of Trelex. Trelex is located on the edge of Jura Mountain Park, between St Cergue and Nyon. I spent about 15 minutes to tour Trelex on foot, and I saw it all!

hay field Trelex Switzerland

Turns out, I’ve been pronouncing Trelex wrong. It’s Tre-lay. The x is silent. So I’ve been telling everyone the wrong place!

Church in Trelex Switzerland

A small church commands a view of Lake Geneva. A school borders the roadway up the mountain to St Cergue. The train station has no building, only a sidewalk to hop on and off.

Tour Trelex Switzerland

The town has a boulangerie (Lord help me), a tiny market with eclectic opening hours, and one shop, ironically called Decoration Florence. Appropriate, yes? Since I grew up in a town called Florence.

boulangerie Decoration Florence in Trelex Switzerland

Trelex, Switzerland is part of Jura Vaudois Nature Park, a mountainous area north of Lake Geneva. Over 523km of hiking trails thread through the park. On some, one can find Alpine Gruyere cheese produced in tiny huts. Wednesday morning, I walked toward the neighboring village and found this field. Vistas like this one abound in the area.

landscape around trelex switzerland

To get to the supermarket, I can take the train into Nyon a fast four stops away. I can practice yoga in the village on Monday evenings and Thursday mornings. And of course, I can hike.

Thanks for taking the time to tour Trelex with me. Connect with me on social media through the icons at the top right of my website to see even more pictures from Trelex!

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To learn more about the Trelex Residency visit their website.

The book I’m working on now is a sequel to the others in the Nowhere Series so if you haven’t read the first two – go get them now!