Sunday, October 28, 2012

First snow of season

I woke up to snow this morning. And it's still snowing. Oh wow. That's it then, winter has arrived. Let's just hope it's gonna be a short one...

Here pictures of my view ... with snow and without :-)


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Drawers

Drawers tend to have a life of their own. Mines at least do. During my move, I kept putting all the small stuff (like pictures, instructions manuals of God knows what, old papers, old mobiles, etc. - I am not done yet therefore don't know what I will find) in one big drawer. It kept getting fuller and fuller until this morning when I opened it, looking for something, not finding it and trying to close it again - NOT succeeding.
That was a sign. I had to start working on my drawer.

Oh my.

Let's just say that I spent the afternoon sorting my photos. Old photos - from 2004 to 2006 (I had them on discs. Do you believe it? My computer back then was sooo slow that I had to put them on CD because the laptop kept shutting down - to many data on it. I remember losing my nerves more than one time!). The drawer is still pretty full but now at least my pictures are totally but sooo totally up to date.
Wanna see some old pictures?

Let's start with Zurich's Bahnhofstrasse. Do you remember when we had all these bears all along the shopping mile? Weren't they cute? That was in 2005, by the way. Doesn't time go by quickly?


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Thinking about... my next trips

I am settled in now. In my home and in my office. Now, I have time for other thoughts. Thoughts about future trips (what else??). There is (almost) nothing more exciting than thinking about future trips. Wanna hear about my plans?

Well, first I will spend one Saturday in Como - in November (mercato - can't wait)
Then two days in Milano - also in November (shopping and culture - can't wait either)

For January I am planning to travel to Asia - Angkor Wat would be my favorite destination.

In April I will travel to Madeira with a friend of mine and her two kids (we are on the travel agency's waiting list - wish us luck).

So far so good, don't you think? When I first thought about traveling to Asia, it was almost immediately clear to me that this time I wouldn't travel on my own. The question therefore was: where to find a travel companion?
Response: I placed an ad in a travel magazine (that I am subscriped to). I always read the ads (they make me dream!) but never actually thought about placing one myself.
I started to received e-mails. Quite a few of them actually.
Let me say it: it's a totally exciting experience!
Firstly exchanging e-mails with unknown people that speak to your heart (because, like me, they like to travel) and secondly getting to meet them all!
Totally exciting!

I already met two of them (I will tell you about them later on) and will meet ... let me count on my agenda ... seven more in the next two weeks. uuuhhhh, totally exciting - will keep you updated

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Other's World: TRAVELING THE WORLD

R. and I have known each other for almost half of my life. On my first job ever (as an adult) there were, at least before R. joined our department, only guys and I :-) So, I was glad to finally have some female company. We clicked. Today, when we go out for dinner (we do so once or twice a year), we talk about everything (the way girls do) but mostly we talk about our travel plans or about the trips we just did or the ones we would like to do. Her traveling is totally not comparable to mine. She has been almost everywhere in this world and continues traveling! Usually, she and her husband do a few "short trips" during the year and "one long trip" in December! I think that this is so totally cool!
R. is a great person. I appreciate our friendship and like her points of view. She always encouraged me to do what I wanted to do. Not everybody understood my way of life but she did - back then and still does today! I like our evenings out and when I go home I usally have some ideas for new travel destinations :-)

Let's read what she has to say about traveling the world. The pictures, by the way, are hers and were taken in Bhutan. I have translated her answers into English (please scroll down - you'll find them after the pictures). I will do so from now on in order for everybody to be able to read the contents of my series of Q&A "The Other's World".

Friday, October 12, 2012

First visit

I had a first visit this morning. How cool is that? S. came to see me in my new office. S. has been my hairdresser for many years until she decided to move to India (yes, you read correctly, India as in THE India in Asia) to live with the guy she loves and with the child they had together. Losing her as a hairdresser was hard on me and actually I had a difficult time finding another person who got along with my hair! On the other hand, I was very happy for her as she is very happy with her new life.

Her child is two years old now and she came to visit familiy and friends for a couple of weeks. I felt so honored to be part of the people she wanted to meet. We had no friendship outside of her salon but somehow it always felt like one. Apparently, the feeling was mutual.
So, S. was my first visit.
She didn't have much time but we did catch up a bit. She told me about her Indian life. You know, while I was listening to her stories, I couldn't stop thinking that we, by we I mean people in the Western World, should stop complaining. Immediately stop complaining.
Wanna hear an example?
Well, for instance, she has to walk for about 3 hours to do grocery shopping (and take the kids from the neighborhood with her for them to help her carrying the food). Or she starts cooking at 10 am in order to be sure that lunch is ready on time. And sometimes the gas stove isn't working so she cooks ... with wood. She assures me that her day goes by very fast. Doubtlessly!

I already hear some of you saying that not ALL of India is that way. I agree. Her husband lives in a very rural area where there are not many facilities. I am certain there are other parts of India where life is similar to the one we have here. Although, India is India. Everybody who has been traveling there is always saying that. It's special, it's poor, it's beautiful.
During my Yellowstone trip this summer I met this Indian family (do you remember?) and the lady actually told me to NEVER BUT NEVER come to India. I first thought she was joking but she wasn't. When I asked why I shouldn't come as many of my friend had told me how beautiful it was, she just shook her head, looking at me as she wanted to ask: what kind of people do YOU know? and said: Too much dirt. You don't like it. And that was it for our discussion!
India is strong - in any way. I am preparing another "The Other's World" story (will be published next week) and this person will also tell you about India.

S. leaves Europe in a couple of days and she said that I could visit her anytime (she and her husband are thinking about moving to Goa to facilitate their life). I don't know if I'm ready for India. I am thinking about traveling to Asia this winter (first time for me - or almost the first time - another one of these long stories). I've been thinking about Angkor Wat for some time now. Maybe I will be ready for India later on?

Anyhow, I was happy to see S. and her child in good health and happy! What a great first visitor!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Step 7 (and final) of my move: settling in

The electrician solved the last problems this morning (lamps and cooking stove were not working).
Now I am ready to settle in.

Wonderful.
I can start my everyday life in my wonderful appartment and my cool office.
I have some news ideas that I'd like to work on. I'm ready.

I am tired but happy!

PS: I promise to post some pictures of my new view and of the funny stuff I found in my boxes!

PSS: To be honest there is still one thing I need to do: clean my old room. Will do that on Saturday... but then, then I'll be definitively settled in...

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Step 6 of my move: unpacking and putting everything away ... in my office

It was totally strange to get up in the morning and knowing that I would leave my house for work! I have worked in my home office for the last three years and now, with my new appartment, I have got this new office space as well. I am totally thrilled about the place and about working "outside" again. My new place is in the middle of the city where there are no bankers but people from all over the world. It's fantastic. Just the bus ride from the train station to my office made me feel like I were in a foreign country (and you know how much I like this! foreign countries, that is).

Instal the Internet connection was the biggest challenge of my first day at the new office. It went well - good, I had to call the hotline because it didn't work immediately but then with the help of the guy over the phone it turned out well and I am connected to world wide web now.
Some stuff had to remain in the boxes because I need to buy more shelves first. A new pin board as well. Some cushions for decoration of my couch (yes, I put my couch in the office as I don't have space for it in my home). Not even mentioning going through all the stuff I have and throwing away things... I think it's called work in progess, right?

Do you want to know a funny thing?
It was to actually ask myself again (after so many years working from home): What do I wear today?
Oh my, I had actually forgotten how this is. So many questions, so early in the morning SMILE as you don't know how the weather is gonna be, as you are gonna out for drinks after work, etc. I am certain though that I will adjust to this new life pretty fast!

PS: Have I mentioned that I am sharing office space with a girl named M and a guy name S? It's cool not to be alone the whole day and to share thoughts and laughs :-)

Monday, October 8, 2012

Step 5 of my move: unpacking and putting everything away

I was totally glad that it rained yesterday! Therefore, I spent my whole day unpacking boxes and putting everything away with a clear conscience!
I worked like crazy, believe me! Jumped out of my bed (first night on my own mattress!!) at 8 am, had coffee and started on the first box. I couldn't spend much time on every detail though. There wasn't time and I wanted to get things done as quickly as possible. Have I mentioned that I worked like crazy?

It was worth the effort. The appartment looks perfect! I will post some pictures in the next days. I will also post pictures of stuff I found in my boxes that made me laugh and had me remembering... You'll see!

Being surrounded by my own things feels wonderful! I can't wait to go through them properly, like looking at old photo albums (the one of my first trip ever-to Paris, for example. or then my Interrail album, my first big trip, etc,), listening to CDs, re-read certain books, etc. This is gonna be so much fun!

PS: Have I told you that from my appartment I can see the lake? It's wonderful to have coffee in the morning and look at the lake :-)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Step 4 of my move: the actual move

I didn't sleep well the night before the actual move. I know, I know, I shouldn't worry as much as I do but hey, I can't be someone I am not :) So many thoughts in my head and this feels like a start to a totally new life (I know, I know, it's just an office space and a one bedroom appartment but I can't help it).
I jumped out of bed at 6.30 (imagine! Me jumping out of bed at this godforsaken hour!!) and by 8 I was at my parent's home. We waited for my friend and then we were on the move ... first to the office and then to my new appartment.

It went good. Smoothly. The sun was shining and the three of us worked good together.

By 11.30 everything was done.
There has been only one panicky moment. I asked the guys to assembly my bed. They just started to do so when my father asked: Where are the screws? Oh my God, where were the screws - I had no idea and the last time we disassemblied the bed it was 6.5 years ago. Who the hell remembers such details? Luckily I am an organised girl (SMILE) and the screws were in my toolbox (a very small one - don't you worry!). Uuuuuh, lucky me. Within 10 minutes the bed was standing and everybody was happy (me the most!).

Now it's up to me: unpacking and furnishing the apparment. All these boxes and I can't even remember what I own - this is gonna be fun :-)

Friday, October 5, 2012

Step 3 of my move: to load up a truck

Truck is loaded and ready to go. Wow, I am totally relieved about this fact. Not only because I have a truck at my disposal for the big day tomorrow but also because we were enough people to load it up. Only a week ago, this fact was no longer sure because a friend of my father who had been telling us(the whole summer - mind you!!) that yes, he would help, and that yes, he would bring the truck he usually used for work, suddenly, didn't seem as positive about it any longer. He never said: No, I won't help you. He never clearly said, yes, I'll help you, either. It was more a "mmmh, it's gonna be OK" and a "no, no, don't you worry, we'll deal with it somehow" (his face saying something totally different though). Oh man, was I disappointed! Couldn't he have said so at the beginning (somewhere around June / July!!)? Well, let's no longer talk about this guy. He's not worth it.
I finally asked a friend of mine if he would help and if he knew someone who owns a truck. He luckily said yes to both questions and here we are now: Friday night, truck loaded up, ready to move!!!

Tonight is my last night in this room which I have been calling mine for more than 3 years now. It's a bit sad, I must admit. It felt good living here, really good. And goodbyes are sad even though I am very much looking forward to having an appartment all to myself again. Gladly, I'm just moving a couple of steps away (will remain in the same house, in a separate appartment). Being sad it's OK though. New beginnings always contain a certain sadness for what we leave behind (when what we leave behind has been nice, of course).

PS: Loading up the truck with all my stuff tonight, I thought of another question for my yesterday's post: How many books does someone need?
I certainly own MORE than enough of them - I had actually forgotten how many exactly (several boxes and bags! Amazing!).

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Step 2 of my move: clothes, shoes and bags

How many shoes does a woman need? How many bags does a woman need? How many clothes?

Today, while moving my summer stuff from my actual room to my new appartment I got philosophical. (And thinking about tomorrow, when I'll be moving all my winter clothes, bags and shoes, gets me sick...)

I love fashion and shoes and adore bags but when you have actually to carry them from one place to the other ... oh my, for a second there, I wished I were different: owning one pair of shoes for each season, same for the bags and let's say three outfits. (Mmmh, just the thought gave me goose bumps SMILE. Try thinking it! It's scary!)
I spent my afternoon carrying stuff down two stairways, out of the door, six steps to another door, up another two stairways. After the sixth or seventh time I started to laugh (that was just after being philosophical :-))
Ridiculous! Really. How can I tell everybody that I am good at owning less, at spending less (implying that I therefore live more and better)?

How can I????

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Step 1 of my move: Office stuff

I've been talking about my new one bedroom appartment and my new office space for so long, I can't hardly believe that NOW the time actually has come to do the real moving thing. Do you know the feeling? You look forward to something, you talk about it, you dream about it and then (it seems suddenly but in fact it isn't suddenly at all!!) ... it's reality!

Well, my reality of moving is right now because I started packing my office stuff. Two things about it leave me speechless:

1) Where did the piles of stuff I have in my (very small!!) office come from???
You know, three years ago I started this job working ... one day a week. Back then, I didn't have much stuff because I didn't need anything. Just my laptop and the printer (good, maybe some pens and paper SMILE). Over the years, though, I started working more hours, then more days and, apparently, with the more hours the more stuff appeared somehow as well. On Monday, my first working day at the new office, it will not only be about getting the Internet working and the phone line (I have NO IDEA how I am gonna do this but I prefer not to think about it right now - other stuff to think about that are more important). No, it will be also be about: do I really need of all this stuff? I will probably have to throw things away. I can't start my new office life in an overcroweded office, can I?

2) Where did all this dust come from? It's disgusting, really! Only when you clear a place you actually see... how NOT clean it is. I didn't know that I actually always had an office friend working with me, called THE DUST :-)))