It was a chilly day in Zermatt. I and Pritha were at the ticket window of the Gornergrat Bahn, waiting for the fellow at the window to hand us our ticket to the mountain railway. One minute to the departure time, we found ourselves rushing through the small platform towards the red train, the GGB.
The Gornergrat Bahn or GGB is the highest open air railway of Europe. From Zermatt GGB terminal, it climbs almost 10 kilometers ascending up to the Gornergrat railway station which is at a height of 3090 meters above sea level.
Inside the train it felt warm, a respite from the harsh cold outside. It was the last train of the day leaving from Zermatt to Gornergrat, with only the two of us and another Korean group onboard. As the train ascended steeply on its tracks, it traversed tunnels, forests and gorges, providing spectacular views of Zermatt and then of the majestic mountains around. Since the climb was steep, the transition in the scenery was fast - from green meadows to rocky ridges to snow all around. And then within a blink of the eye, we entered the clouds. It made us realize how high up we were.
Once we stirred clear of the clouds, we couldn’t help but shout out loud. On our right hand side, stood The Matterhorn – tall, proud and formidable. This Swiss icon is one of the most famous mountains on earth, a fascination of most climbers and mountaineers and one of the last alpine mountains to be conquered.
As we stepped onto the snow at Gornergrat, we walked close to the mountain’s edge. That was as close as we could get to Matterhorn. We were no climbers. We were just two simple girls from a faraway land who have always listened to their hearts. And the heart said, go explore the world. Awestruck, we admired its snowy peak as it slowly started to glow orange under the setting sun. It was a sight to behold, a sight that can never be forgotten.
Standing there together, we looked at each other and smiled. Four years back we had met in Chennai while pursuing MBA and became good friends. Four months back she had told me that she will be in Switzerland during this time, on an onsite assignment. And four days back I was on a plane from Mumbai to Zurich, thinking how time flies faster.
As per a local saying, those who see the Matterhorn become successful and wealthy one day. We are definitely en route to our individual definition of success, but what mattered most that day was that we were witnessing this grand sight #together. It filled us up with optimism for the future, a strength to face every obstacle with courage and to look up and set goals as high as Matterhorn. It was the power of being together.