In the early weeks of December, the familiar faces who come to Wengen for the season year after year begin to appear around the village, slotting into place as if they have never been away. So the continuity of the winters is maintained. On this weekend, the first of the regular holidaymakers arrive for a week or two over Christmas and new year.
At the moment, familiar faces are hidden by masks, but it is clear that whilst some of the regulars have made it here from disparate parts of the world, many other have not. The Christmas stalwarts too are missing and of those normally here for the season but not yet, it maybe that we will not see all of them this time around.
Today, hardly anyone came to ski. Apart from the cable car first thing in the morning, there were few people around. The forecast had been poor, but apart from an hour or so in the late morning and early afternoon, the sun made an appearance and the skiing was good, in marked contrast to the news from outside this enclave in the Bernese mountains.
A very quiet day on the hill brought 10,429 vertical metres in 21 lift rides and 54 kilometres travelled.