Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Smiles 211:365

I'm about to leave Switzerland and I can't say I'm currently smiling. But I'm doing as Dr Seuss advised so here are some things that made me smile here.

And so many more things. 

Auf wiederluege xx

Monday, 29 July 2013

Smiles 210:365

John's been playing with his camera again and this has been titled "the Grimsel banditos"

And here's Isaac yesterday with an ebenezer to which he added. 

It's been stormy and raining all day in Zermatt so we've been relaxing, drinking coffee in the Bäckerei and pootling around town between showers. Jude has a new jacket and a new mountain goat called Griff. I went for a run this morning in a stormy torrential downpour but it was a lovely run as the river raged past and the mountains occasionally appeared from behind a cloud. And John kept popping his head out the window just in case the Matterhorn had managed to fully emerge (didn't quite make it) 

This cow made me smile - so cheeky! And as an emoticon - }:8P

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Smiles 208:365

21 years on, almost to the exact day. The dungarees were paler blue and patterned, and the hair longer; John had more hair and Converse trainers but here was are in Obergesteln where it all started. And as we drove through the Goms Valley, the memories flowed:
  • the men from Oberwald (g-dong)
  • a mountain walk that was more challenging than was originally expected
  • the bench by the church (still there!)
  • a football tournament that a very competitive man called John (not my John) lost to everyone's amusement
  • cycling to Munster along the airfield
  • giving pigs indigestion with the remains of our curry
  • ice cream in Ulrichen
  • the 'sprawling metropolis' of Brig 
  • sliding down an ice flow in Fiesch
And the trip over the Grimselpass too - although there were no breakdowns this time, we weren't in a coach and it wasn't as scary this time!

I did feel like I was in Les Revenants though as we passed the reservoir...
and then John saw a child that looked just like Victor scooting past in Zermatt. I'm watching out for zombies although I can just see lots of Japanese tourists at the moment and they're less scary!

So we're in Zermatt now and it's lovely. Some beautiful old buildings, the mountains around us are stunning, and it was nice to feel a bit chilly this evening (and get slightly damp as the rain bounced off the edge of the restaurant canopy!)
Up a mountain tomorrow - must pack the Rescue Remedy in case of cable cars!

Friday, 26 July 2013

Smiles 207:365

All our belongings are in the van and our home us empty.

Jude and Isaac found ways of getting comfortable as the packing went on around them. 

About to go to sleep in a hotel prior to a short break in Zermatt having had a delicious pizza thanks to the recommendation of lovely Krislyn. Jude is currently planning on sleeping across two beds - I fear his Dad may have something to say about that!

Funny point of the day - Isaac repeatedly 'derailing' his suitcase as he pulled it up the ramp next to the stairs at Kloten station. 

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Smiles 206:365

Tonight's post features amusingly named beer, delicious food, lovely removal men and one last night in our Wohnung. 
Here, Isaac beautifully models Cow Water beer - ein süffiges, malzhaltiges naturtrübes Genussbeer. 

Then I looked at the menu - and decided I had to try this beer too. So here's my Fahrtwind hell. 

Food was delicious too - here's John's Schinken, Käse und Speigelei crêpe. 
Followed by Frozen yogurt with Crunchy nut flakes und Honig.

Thanks to the lovely Mark and Paul, today has not been as stressful as I feared, and nothing like the moving out nightmare. Little things like asking where we'd like them to start, asking if I'd got some books to read before they packed them all away and querying if certain items belonged to the apartment are so helpful. And they left our beds, the sofa the TV and the kettle overnight so we weren't camping as much as we might. Tomorrow night we're in a hotel prior to a short trip to Swiss Valais (squeezing as much as we can in before we go). So for the last time, I'm off to sleep in my Winti Wohnung. 

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Smiles 205:365

This picture made me laugh today. I think it's from Innocent Smoothies but not sure. 

It's been a busy day getting ready for the packers tomorrow but we've had fun along the way. Isaac Jude and I formed a formidable 'net curtain removal' team, and our rubbish distribution reached new levels of deviousness. I also found time to buy a new pair of shoes and watch the IPC Athletics on TV, both of which made me smile. 

Time for sleep now though. 

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Smiles 204:365

Happy 19th wedding anniversary to my long suffering husband John who makes me smile quite often - occasionally as a coping mechanism but mostly for good reasons ;) 

We had dinner at Tibits this evening - delicious but a little sad as it'll be our last meal there before we leave. Please open a branch in Birmingham - I don't get to London often enough to satisfy my Tibits habit! 

Below is 23rd July 1994, also a scorchingly hot day incidentally!

Monday, 22 July 2013

Smiles 203:365

Today's smile is the display in the door of Franz Karl Weber - pigs!  And this story about a horse in McDonalds. Both seem appropriate as the Pickups left today - safe journey back to Darwen and your Aga :o)

And this window display is for Jude - he's not getting the real dog so a picture will have to do!

Other smiles today? Some serious recycling, the card the boys chose for their cousin's birthday (I hope he finds it funny!!) and completing a pile of ironing. And walking through lovely Winti in the sunshine.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Smiles 202:365

Boys were a bit bothered by the above - how are you supposed to build with this Duplo, especially in this heat?!

It's a bit sad when your smiles are caused by packing and distributing rubbish. However, I did get great satisfaction from unpacking and replacing boxes, finding books that I thought were in England and cursing the fact that only now am I finding things that would have been useful weeks ago!
And our continuing excursions to distribute rubbish around the wastebins of Winti always raise a smile. 

Sad that David Millar didn't stay out front to the end, and that Mark Cavendish didn't make it 5 wins on the Champs d'Elysees but watching was great and you have to say well done to Chris Froome for winning the Tour de France and being declared 'le vainquer' (the boys found that particularly funny for some reason...!)
Roll on 2014 and the Grand Depart in Yorkshire! 

Smiles 201:365

This morning we hopped into a Mini Cooper and popped off to Kreuzlingen with plans! And many smiles ensued. 

First off a trip onto Bodensee on a pedalo - such fun! Pedaloes have come on since I was a kid with comfy deck chair seats and far more room! We even got a sunshade!

The trip was made even better by meeting two families of ducks. So sweet - they swam over to say hello, stared at Jude and followed us for quite a while!

After a wonderful hour 'pedalo-ing', our next plan kicked in - reclaiming tax from shops. About 60 euros worth today! I like walking into shops and they give you money!

And then lunch at Maximillians and home to change before a visit to Buchberg with the Pickups. An incident filled trip featuring close encounters with greenery in Flach, various playground japes, a beautiful sunset and a bus with an identity crisis as well as delicious food and great company! 

So many smiles - and glorious sunshine too! What more could I want?

Friday, 19 July 2013

Smiles 200:365

I often run past this QR code outside das Medienhaus and think "must scan that" but, as I'm out running it'a never the right time. Tonight we were out for our after dinner wander (aka rubbish drop) and the time was right. 
And it was worth it as it linked to this - (video embed doesn't show on mobile devices)

The artwork is rather funky too!

And there was breakfast with friends - always bound to make me smile despite it being 'au revoir' to Yvette, Krislyn and Gabriela - and nearly to Lisa! Delicious - and there were left overs so the boys were smiling too.

One more thing from today. Jude and I rode our old bicycles to Brühlgut Stiftung and donated them to Velos für Afrika - fun as a) the saddles were too low for us  b) I wasn't quite sure where it was (I had Google Map in my pocket in case) and  c) we got to go on the Töss bus at last - from Töss!

Smiles 199:365

Some 'looks like a smile' pictures today.
Neither of my boys know what a floppy disc is; I think it's rather cute!

And this one reminded me of Isaac at lunchtime yesterday. Whichever way I went to get in the 'big drawer' in the kitchen in order to get a plate, Isaac was blocking the way. I complained that it was like playing an 80s computer game. He was amused!

Finally I liked this one. Looks intelligent!

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Smiles 198:365

Great marketing ploy, especially if you have a child in tow - pig walks/rabbit hops into your path with a balloon giving price! Not so good if they get stuck in a corner as they make a very annoying noise!
Franz Karl Weber in Zürich is great fun with a slide into the basement (although not sure about the separate floors for girls and boys toys!) 
We also visited Orell Füssli where I had to smile at Jude's horror when looking at the price of English books. Books are expensive here anyway but English ones are even worse. It also sells 'ex-pat food' and that prompted an outburst 
"This Peppermint Aero is marked £1 but costs 4.90CHF!"

Hotdog by the Limmat soon calmed things down...

But then indignation reappeared as we spotted the Frauenbad
"What! Is there one just for men then? That's not fair!"
My boys do make me smile!