Volltext: Jahrbuch des Historischen Vereins für das Fürstentum Liechtenstein (2008) (107)

LIECHTENSTEIN IN ALTEN SCHILDERUNGEN NORBERT W. HASLER miliar road that I rested at that homey place while the shadows of the pines slid down the eastern slope. A tiring scramble along the marvelous trail to Gaflei stirred my senses anew. Never do I remember so pure and clear a light. Seidom have I looked upon such charming scenes as those glimpsed from the path to Gaflei. Not a touch of the haze which almost hid the Rhine had reached the upper mountain slopes. The red-tiled roof of the memorial church at Balzers was mercifully veiled, but upon the mountain huts and stables nearer at hand one could count the heavy stones which hold the thick shingles in place. MAKING HAY ON STEEP SLOPES All about that steep landscape the people were still making hay. In seemingly inaccessible spots oxcarts and hand-drawn sledges were piled high, and in one place two laughing children came sliding down a steep slope in a hay nest which rapidly increased in size. At Gaflei some of my fellows of the rough and rugged trail were drinking tall glasses of rieh milk. In the dining room, piano and violin were harmoniz- ing pleasantly, and on one of the walls was a rhymed rule of conduet for this often rainy resort nearly a mile above sea level: «Good humor's not rare When the weather is fair, But don't play dunce And lose it in the rain.» The clear evening light on the mountain side lured me by the carriage road to Masescha, one plateau farther down from Gaflei, and to Rothenboden, whence a short route runs to Triesenberg. As I en- tered the forest below the Vaduz castle and passed the giant beeches, some with funerary crosses, ink- black darkness settled suddenly, as it does when the afterglow dies behind the palm trees in Ceylon. That last evening was delightful. A motor truck load of men and women poured into the inn just af-ter 
I had dined, and far into the night they stayed, a jolly party with a clear, untrained soprano and a booming bass standing out from a background of song. When their big truck roared its «Auf Wiederse- hen» to Vaduz, I awoke and heard the singing die away down the moonlit street. They were «Seeing Nellie Home.» Thus ended my day in warmhearted Liechtenstein. Already I was a little homesick for the land I would not leave until the morrow. Perhaps Stevenson did sense the philosophy of travel. «The great affair is to ... feel the need and hitches of our life more nearly; to come down off this feather bed of civilization and find the globe granite underfoot and strewed with cutting flints. Even a holiday must be worked for.» 225


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