There is something so exquisite about Swiss nature. The next stop Jennifer and I made was Sion – is a quiet, French-speaking town. It happens to be the capital of Valais canton. The number of cantons and degree of decentralization for a small country like Switzerland amazes me. The highlight of Sion is the Chateau de Tourbillion which is a castle situated on top of a hill. There is no entrance fee and rightfully so because it was in fact just castle ruins with an intact exterior facade. There was a basilica nearby too. The walk up the hill was rather exhausting but the view along the way was breathtaking. I remember seeing an old lady with a walking stick making her way up the hill very slowly and that was a heartening sight. Old people in Switzerland seem to be more independent and adventurous and they travel together to places. In Singapore, old people tend to be passive and quite dependent on their children because of the concept of filial piety. I think it’s great if children take care of their aging parents but on the whole, it is healthier if old people can form their own community and support one another. Family should still take care of them but they should have their own life and their own friends.
I really miss the vineyards, mountains and fresh Swiss air. I think I really want to live somewhere close to nature when I am young. Singapore is a great place to have a family and settle down because of all its pro-family policies but it is not a nice place to be when you are young and hate spending weekends in shopping malls.