As you may or may not know, I leave a small village with no shops, just one restaurant and a castle up the hill. We are not so isolated as we have connection with civilisation in the shape of a local train known as “Bipperlisi” by the local population. This train connects our village to the small market town of Solothurn, population approximately 17,000 at the moment, not many, but it is rising. Today Mr. Swiss and I went to town to deal with a few things and this is what we saw, built on the main square on the periphery of the old town. What is it you may ask? What is this stretch of sand doing in the middle of the town, with a spectators stand? Our bright sparks in the local government must have given their permission to implant a beach volleyball arena in this part of town. It has been here throughout summer, but I think it is now being demolished. Playing beach volleyball amidst snow drifts and frozen roads is not exactly the thing to do.
I remember my old working days where my direct boss (the best boss I ever had) was only a year older than my youngest son. My son even knew him quite well from his school days, and being a small town, connections remain. Am drifting away from what I was saying, but yes, my previous boss in the office was a keen beach volleyball player. I believe he had to seek his pitch of operations in another part of the Kanton (county, state) but I am sure he was happy to find that our town of Solothurn now had its own beach volleyball pitch. Strangely enough we don’t have oceans or seas in Switzerland, just the odd Lake thrown in between the mountains, hills and valleys, not to speak of beaches. I think there are beaches on the Lakes of Neuchâtel and Geneva, but am not sure, so I wonder how the local Swiss youths got the taste for the game. Whether my previous boss is now happy about this development I do not know. In the meanwhile he has got married and being older is now more into the serious side of life.
Why you have to have a beach for volleyball I do not know. I am sure you can play it in a hall with normal floor, or perhaps even on grass. Strange things you find in a market town in Switzerland. I wonder if the Roman founders of our town around 20 a.D. also played a similar game, but they were probably too busy with their chariot races, or perhaps feeding gladiators to the local animals, although I don’t think Solothurn had anything bigger than a cow and they are quite peaceful creatures.