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Lucie de Nooij | NIKHEF | The Netherlands

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Planning a holiday

Next week we will be hiking the Swiss mountain slopes close to Zermatt and the Matterhorn. I have been to Zermatt once before as a kid, and the only thing I remember about it was a guy who guided his 50 goats through the streets. A Japanese family wanted to take my picture with a goat. The goat bit a hank of my hair, I am sure the pictures were hilarious.

Being a grown up now, I want to enjoy Zermatt in a serious and more sustainable fashion: I decided to plan my trip. This is something rather new for me. Usually I read a novel on the plane and get staggered by the fact that I can’t pay with euro’s on arrival. So my decision arose a problem: where do people plan a trip? On howtodothings.com I ended up making a IQ test and on loneyplanet they suggest that you think before you act. Thanks..

This asks for a more rigorous approach: after all, I am a scientist. Like the ATLAS detector, it is really hard to understand and analyse that whole thing at once. So this planning should contain a setup for travelling back and forth to Swiss, the days in between and a risk analysis of the things that may change this program. When you think about it, there is an overwhelming variaty of things that may happen in the mountains. What if I fall in love with goat guy? Would my boyfriend allow me in the car after such a betrayal? Do I need to bring an extra car just in case?

Concluding remark: I am completely inadequate holiday planner.

Every year tens of people die climbing the Matterhorn. I guess this only adds to its almost scary beaty.

Every year tens of people die climbing the Matterhorn. I guess this only adds to its almost scary beaty.

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