A DAY IN SWITZERLAND

· Gatherings and Nursing a Cold and Lychee Champagne ·

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I don’t do well with labels on pharmaceuticals. In America, I don’t typically have to worry about this, as I have Mr Bird to advise me: No, that makes you nauseous. No, that makes you weird. Definitely no. That makes you sleep for 12 hours. Imagine my confusion when this is combined with German words for these over the counter medications.

I’ve had a bit of an allergy flare up since arriving in Switzerland. Stuffy nose. Itchy eyes. Bloated. Well.. maybe I can’t blame the bloated, skin looks like dried playdough on the allergies. I have yet to determine who to blame for that one.

Two mornings ago, the buzzer on my suite rang. Well, it zzz-d. When I opened the door, lovely pastries, all manner of cheeses (ok, ok, maybe the bloating is the massive amounts of cheese I’ve eaten since I’ve been here… when in Zurich…), a pot of coffee, tea, orange juice, milk, butter, cream (yep, more dairy). Wow. I felt like I was in Swiss heaven. A short while later, the buzzer zzz’d again.

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Alex, the lovely Thai fellow who works here, and his sister – hello, you need anything? So we chat for awhile, and I thank them for the lovely breakfast goodies. But I am congested and probably had this look on my face of dear God, I can no longer breathe much less speak. So Alex runs to bring me medicine. Here, he says, take this, in water, at night. Before bed.

We say good-bye. I walk down the street to my friend’s house. I play for a few hours with her lovely, adorable daughter. We say good-bye.

My Swiss friend was driving to my hotel this evening. She moved from the States back to Switzerland two years ago. I had promised her that I would come visit her, and somehow magically managed to keep my promise, which is good, because I flagrantly tell everyone that I always keep my promises, which is a lot to live up to with my big mouth at times.

When she arrives, we decide to order Indian food and have it delivered. This in itself is challenging as Indian food when descibed in German words, does not sound the least bit appetizing. I believe one of the items, formerly known as Tikka Masala was described as tomato, onion, garlic with a cashew sauce with pickled yoghurt. Oh well, sign me up for that one, that sounds delightful.

We order. We click send. We wait. And wait. And … wait. Now, when I lived in England, I learned that delivery can take awhile. But two hours later and I’m starting to worry as it’s nearly 11pm.

I have my friend call since she speaks Swiss German (and about five other languages). They don’t have the order. And they are closing. Turns out that the site we ordered from only processes orders until 8pm M-F. This is the kind of information that should be prominently displayed from the beginning, but we find only through digging deep into the depths of the Delivery sites FAQ’s.

We hop in the car and drive around. Lots of pizzarias. Oh look – a New York restaurant which serves “Beef Dogs”. Not hot dogs. Beef dogs.

Somehow she magically finds a hole in the wall Indian restaurant. She begs the waiter, who it turns out is also the chef, the owner, and was about to close, for a table. He agrees. We sit.

Green, yellow, or red curry? he asks.

Can I see a menu? I ask

Red, green, or yellow curry he asks again.

Er. Red?

He later brings us plates with rice shaped in hearts. I see him taking items out of the fridge in the back. Two bowls later arrive – an interesting mixture of cuisines somewhere between Thai, Indian, and I’m not sure yet. Still trying to place the combination of bell peppers, carrots, watercress, and olives in the mixture.

We stay up late chatting and drinking Lychee Champagne, but I still manage to wake up at 7:30 the following morning! I am so impressed with myself! It only took 5 days to acclimate. Yay, me.

I finally succumb to my nose being congested enough and my eyes bothering me enough to warrant medicine. I place the little fizz tablet into a cup of hot water and drink it. It’s not the most revolting medicine I’ve ever tasted, but it’s also far from good. Within moments I go from very alert and energized to … must … lay … down .. sleep … now … zzzzzzzz. Which explains the advice of – take this before bed, at night. I really should have listened to him. Unfortunately, the medicine only lasted through my mid day nap. Where’s Mr. Bird when you need him?

I did manage to walk down the street to spend time with my expat friends. We went out to dinner, which was absolutely amazing. And yes, I ordered the truffle ravioli, drenched in creme sauce. Stuffy, bloated, congested, wonder when I will look like the better version of myself again (ever?) be darned.

Meanwhile … we’re all on baby watch. I think the countdown to this little fellow’s arrival has begun.

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Hugs always,

T

February 19, 2011

1 Comment

  1. Reply

    Jason Bird

    February 19, 2011

    If I were a painter, I’d paint us a starry night
    I too, would lend you an ear.
    If I were a poet, I’d write the perfect sonnet
    all the right words…all the right rhymes.
    If I were a songwriter, I’d write us our song
    the story of us…the soundtrack of future adventures.
    And if I were a sculptor, I’d make our memories out of stone.
    so in a thousand years we can dig them up…
    …together.

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