It took nearly an hour to discover what was happening.
We had hiked up to this meadow just outside Zermatt, on the trail that eventually leads to Zmutt and the North Face of the Matterhorn. It was getting hot, and Varenna was inspecting the gravel on the trail, handing her best specimens to Mom, and then pushing her stroller like the big girl she was proclaiming to be (“bick guhr! bick gurh!). We were all content, and not planning to go too far. After all, this appeared to be it: the iconic view of the Matterhorn, the one that conjures visions of alpenhorns and men yodeling “Ri-co-la” into the crisp glacial air.
But as we turned to head back to town, the moon was suddenly quite noticeable and on a very interesting course.
(Click on image for a larger version)
And so, over the course of maybe 20 minutes, it swooped low, landed on the summit of the Matterhorn, and temporarily turned the world’s most famous mountain into a Santa hat.
It disappeared, then reemerged, like an arrow piercing the heart of Switzerland and coming out the other side. It was our second-to-last full day in the country, but it felt like an apt conclusion to the trip.