Glad to be breathing clean mountain air and gazing at the striking views of Graubunden, I was eager to find a restaurant for some delicious Cheese Fondue.
As I proudly introduced the magnificent spectacle of Alpine beauty to Scott, I noticed some Japanese visitors stepping off a nearby coach. As their vehicle came to a halt in the parking area at the base of the legendary Eiger Mountain, a middle-aged member of the Asian group headed away from the gathering. She directly turned to face this huge mountain and began to purposefully sing. A divinely inspired and resonant voice reached out to embrace the mountain.
It was one of those moments in life that impels one to stop transfixed, as time stands still. Singing without reserve, she gave her whole self to the Eiger in this ballad of love. After her melancholy yet beautiful serenade ended, she stood for some minutes – silent and fulfilled. Then from one moment to the next, this middle-aged lady walked briskly away, an average well-dressed woman once again. Joining her companions as though nothing had happened to halt their sightseeing trip, she chatted and pointed to the Swiss Alps.
This act of singing to a mountain may have a profound cultural significance – or perhaps it was simply one person’s unique and individual fulfillment. I will never forget that hauntingly exquisite song, nor will I forget the deeply resonant and clear voice.
Scott, who had lived in Japan for two years while in the US Navy, suggested that this song was dedicated to the spirit of the mountain. A Ballard of love – devoted to Life. I never did find out the why of it – but it didn’t matter because I heard it.
This is a story from the book I wrote called: ‘Switzerland, You Danced in my Heart’
Copyright© Charmiene Maxwell-Batten 2010. All Rights Reserved
This is a narrative about the experience of seeing a middle aged Japanese lady, singing so hauntingly and lovingly to the magnificent Eiger mountain in Switzerland. Her voice was filled with emotion, inspiration and beauty. It was a rare, special and meaningful moment to have heard this. I will always remember the sound of her voice! The Eiger was astoundingly clear and magnificent that day!
Featured in: THE WORLD AS WE SEE IT