High in the Italian Alps, former hotel manager Katharina Brueggebors is getting used to her summer job: cattle herder.
Brueggebors, who had no experience of farming until a few months ago, is hoping the calm and quiet of six months in the Alps will help her to reorient her life.
Living in a traditional alm — a small wooden mountain hut — and accompanied by a faithful sheepdog, Nelly, she watches over a herd of 300 cattle as they graze on the high pastures of the Sesvenna mountain range.
Farmers regularly hire inexperienced help from many walks of life to help in the summer, when their animals are brought up from the valley to mountain plateaux to spend the summer months feeding on the grass-rich meadows of the higher altitudes.
The tradition of transhumance in the mountains of Switzerland, Austria, northern Italy and southern Germany goes back centuries and plays an integral part in Alpine life and agriculture.
-- Getty Images contributed to this report
EDITOR'S NOTE: Images taken on July 28, 2013 and made available to NBC News today.