Friday, January 28, 2011

...and the pursuit of Happiness

The Swiss.

They make me laugh.

Like when they decide to block off half the road to prune the freezing month of January, starting EXACTLY at the 8 am rush hour. Not an hour later, and certainly not on the weekends. Only when they can cause the biggest possible traffic jam. They also make sure to finish just AFTER 5 pm, to ensure a slow send off for those weary office workers who have opted to drive a car and not use the (admittedly fabulous) public transit system.

Driving a car in Switzerland is definitely not a right. It is a privilege that you earn every day by showing large amounts of patience. In addition to the teeny tiny roads not-really-suitable-for-two-way-traffic-but-let's-give-it-a-go, pedestrians are morally superior demi gods who have absolute rights at crossings, which are multiple and always seem to pop up around tight corners. Allowing not a moment of rest for those good-for-nothing, lazy drivers, who really should be walking to work/school with the rest of us.

And this pedestrian right of way is exercised without caution, with children and adults walking out onto the street at any time, wearing only black in the early morning/evening hours, but never without a steely look of disdain at the car, while it screeches to a halt. Testing the driver's vision and certainly the car's brakes to the fullest.

Thus, my 5 minute morning run with B boy down to school has often turned into a 15 minute stop and go.

No matter. Just more time to enjoy the stunning scenery.

(And secretly giggle at the Swiss from my heated leather seat :)

((Never mind that the Swiss probably giggle even more at my ever expanding waistline as I drive by them working off last night's fondue cheese and rosti on their hike home to the mountain chalet after work)).


In house news, we are making progress! We are at T - 2.5 weeks, and things are looking up. Tiling has been almost completed, ditto hardwood flooring. Baseboards and walls are in the process of being finalized. Ceilings are almost done. Kitchen is partially in, and though I am not thrilled with the colour of the cabinet doors (I swear the sample was greyer!), I am confident we have maximized what little kitchen space we had available to its fullest.

As for the bathrooms....well, we may be making friends with our neighbours sooner than anticipated. But there's still 2 weeks left, so I have hope that at least one will be ready to use.

Besides...(cue the angel music now):

...The closets are being installed this week! This is a massively huge deal for someone who's been living with only cardboard boxes and three tiny drawers for six months. The Swiss do not believe in built-ins, and we have suffered the consequences in our rental. I almost cried with happiness when I saw how large the boys' closets are in the new house, and I had visions of neat piles of folded jeans, t-shirts and rows of starched white school uniform shirts.

As if that'll ever happen in our house.

But all in all, things are on the up and up.

Especially since this was the situation only a few weeks ago (ignore the monkey):

Updated photos to follow!