Venturing Into the Swiss Alps with Square Wave
We woke up at the crack of dawn to start our long journey into the Bernese Alps. I took my Square Wave with me as companions, I wanted to use them as tools for meditation and reflection. A soft cold fog had rolled into the nooks and crannies of the ancient forests of the Haslital; a stoic valley covered in icy peaks and luscious dark green vegetation, at the feet of the famous Eiger and Jungfrau mountains. I could hear the Reichenbach Falls, the location of Sherlock Holmes’ infamous fall, rushing and churning in the distance; its crystalline waters streamed upwards towards its glacial source.
An Unusual Education
This is where I had spent three years of my life, nestled in the warm wooden chalets of my boarding school, the École D’Humanité. The school had been built by a humanitarian educator named Paul Geheeb. He had a new take on traditional education and valued democracy, community and responsibility as being a necessary part of any school. Some of its more famous alumni include Rajiv Gandhi (The 6th Prime Minister of India) and Hans Zimmer (The score composer for Inception, Gladiator and Dunkirk), who is infamous for having burned down one of the schoolhouses.
The Ascent Into the Land of Snow
We took a 19th-century funicular car up to our first destination. We reached the snow brushed tunnels and began our ascent thousands of meters up. I placed my silver square wave outside my window to watch it dance in the wind. To my surprise, it picked up the stunning reflections of the snow and brittle ice and lit up with diamond-like shimmers.
Pure Trance Amongst the Alps
On my way up to Planplatten a peak just above the Haslital, I sat in the snow and dangled the sculpture in front of me. It produced the same effect, a beautiful shimmering dance of light and silver. After staring into its gleaming swirls I found myself in a trance of relaxation, and utter peace, like slipping into a warm bath. I was fully able to absorb the majesty of the icy giants that surrounded me on all sides.
A little bit of trance is something we need in our everyday lives. Something to remind us to look away from our phones, to think twice about reading a message and appreciate the mysterious and archaic natural world around us. Being a bit sentimental, I can’t help but think that there is something beautiful about bringing a physical representation of the formula found in every natural thing into one of the wildest places on earth. I believe that surely… there must be a metaphor there.