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The Boy, 2 Muttleys and I have finally realized our dream of living 1 mile from the Lindt Chocolate Factory. Leaving Atlanta (the World of Coke) for Zurich (the World of Chocolate) hasn't come without challenges, incredible fun or giggles. Follow along as I chronicle our adventures as we acclimate to this new Swiss lifestyle.
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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Bat Crap Crazy-Volume 2

There is NO Line

Friends, there is a European pandemic and it appears to have been around for years. It is called "ThereIsNoSuchThingAsALine-itus" and there is no cure. People infected blatantly step in front of you while you are waiting at the cash register. They have vacant eyes, foam at the mouth and must, I said MUST, check out, get on the bus, get on the train, get on the tram, get through the door, cross the proverbial finish line, etc....before you. They can't help it, they were infected at birth. The WHO (World Health Organization) is baffled but has pin-pointed the gene that has been mutated. The "I will wait patiently for my turn" gene has become the "I don't give a rats ass if you were in front of me" in affected people.

Ok, ok, ok...so not all Europeans are rude and cut lines, but I am shocked by the push, shove, elbow in the gut or cut in line I experience on a daily basis. All my years of basketball have finally paid off, once a bench warmer, I now start in my very own basketball game everyday where I am the star center boxing the crap out of anyone who tries to do this to me.

Sadly, you do find yourself succumbing to this behavior on occasion or you would never get anywhere. Survival of the fittest at its best (or worst I suppose). I do however limit this behavior to emergency situations and I have even perfected a stare down. To shake things up, I purposely shove someone who is about to shove me, then turn on the doe eyes and say "oh, Entshuldigung!!!" That is German for excuse me...or "ha, winner winner, chicken dinner!".
Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bat Crap Crazy-Volume 1

So gang, I have decided to do a weekly post titled "Bat Crap Crazy". It will consist of an observation or experience that leaves me scratching my head in such a manner that I end up looking like a dog with a bad case of Mange. I assure you it won't be all negative observations, for instance I am still in utter disbelief that I live a mile away from the Lindt Chocolate Factory. You can catch me walking through the park nearby trying to eat the air. I am sure a blogger down the street has done a post on the crazy lady in the park eating the air.

All it has to be is unbelievable. So without further rambling, I present you with Volume 1:

The Shiny Puffy Coat

So I am not fashion forward, I am probably somewhere between fashion diagonal and perpendicular. I have only started wearing boots over my jeans, which for this tomboy is a great accomplishment and one that hasn't come about without a little bit of angst. I get my hair cut once every 3-4 months, I don't paint my nails and I use Covergirl cosmetics. Maybe I gave too much away about my style (or lack thereof), but friends if I know anything about fashion, I know that shiny puffy coats are not attractive. I happen to own a puffy coat, albeit a non-shiny one. I actually think they can look cute if they aren't too big, or if you wear it with jeans and a pair of boots. I almost chose to do the post on the Floor Length Puffy Coat, but I decided the Shiny Puffy Coat was more offensive.

Here are 5 Signs you may own a a shiny puffy coat:

1. You can see your reflection in your puffy coat.
2. In addition to the popular choices of white and black, it likely comes in the other neutral colors of Fuchsia, Turquoise or Canary Yellow. It also comes with a fur lined hood option.
3. It doesn't keep you warm because instead of being filled with feather down, it is filled with bad taste.
4. A child has pointed at you and said "Hey Mommy, look! An Astronaut! I want to be her when I grow up!".
5. You are an Italian man.

Now if for some reason you are reading my blog and you own a shiny puffy coat with a fur lined hood, I can't apologize. Reason being, you my friend have the confidence of, well...someone really confident. You have something that transcends good taste and for that, you should be proud and give yourself a pat on the back...although if you are wearing your shiny puffy coat at the time, it is likely your hand slipped while doing so.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Our First 35k

No, not of the running variety sadly. The Boy, Art of Geneva and I biked from the Zurich Hauptbahnhof to the scenic town of Rapperswil 3 weeks ago. We did it "Gangsta Rapper" style of course; the Boy on a retro mint green bike, Art of Geneva in all of his 6'2" glory on a bike that was fitted for someone of a 5'4" stature and myself, of course looking fabulous in barely warm enough gear.

Let's visit the mint green bike the Boy now proudly owns. I am sure if you live in the States, particularly the deep south, you have witnessed the "Real Men Love Jesus" bumper sticker. Here, I am thinking about making a "Real Men Ride Mint Green Bikes" sticker. The bike is pretty rad, however it has been pointed out in jest that it is a woman's bike. The Boy pulls it off though, in style, without impacting his manhood in the slightest.

Coincidentally "bike" is "Fahrrad" in Deutsch. We purchased our rad "Fahrrads" at an outdoor used bike sale in Zurich 2 months ago. There were hundreds, if not thousands of bikes to choose from and if you ever observed what new bikes cost in Switzerland, you leave feeling like you just pulled one over on Switzerland. "Pssst, Switzerland...guess what? I just made a reasonable purchase. Whatchoo going to do about that??? Oh, you are going to charge me 100 francs for a Turkey, ok then...you win" It is still a small consumer victory and I encourage anyone in the market for a bike, especially a street bike, to find one of these bike fairs. In addition to scoring a bike, you can get all your gear, bike registration and tune ups done in one of the many kiosks framing the fair. It really is a one stop shop.

Rapperswil is located 35 km southeast of Zurich on the Zurichsee and hosts a cute town centre (um, of course) and a castle and giant examples of poor dental work and/or hygiene:

Is it me or doesn't this outdoor fireplace at the foot of steps leading to a castle remind you of some shady dental work? Oh, and it isn't often a sentence consists of "outdoor fireplace at the foot of steps leading to a castle". Oh Europe, you are so complex and magical.

35 km works out to be roughly 21 miles for my American readers. For folks like ourselves whose longest bike ride to date may have been 10 miles, this was challenging although fortunately for us, mostly flat. The ride skirted the Zurichsee which lent to its flat gradient. The road we rode on was rather busy, we were passed by roughly 20 serious bikers, but we refused to let the 9 year old boy, who was gaining on us, pass us. Again, small victories are still victories.

We of course visited the Castle of Rapperswil which is one of its main sites. It was indeed a nice castle however I thought the views from the castle were its greatest asset:

The views seem to inspire the Boy and Art of Geneva into thought provoking conversation. My best guess is they were discussing Nieztsche and the Existentialist Movement or Bratwurst. My money is on Bratwurst:

We ended our day at a Swiss cafe, each enjoying a piping hot bowl of Aelplermagronen and a light beer. Aelplermagronen is the Swiss version of mac and cheese, complete with macaroni, potatoes, cheese sauce, crunchy onions and a side of apple sauce. Art of Geneva said he has had better versions, but after biking 21 miles we all agreed it hit the spot.

After our Swiss lunch we gathered ourselves, our gear and our inflated bike egos, and then headed to the train station where we trained it back to Zurich. Biking 21 miles to nowhere is not nearly as tantalizing as biking to an actual destination. Rapperswil was a beautiful destination spot and proved to be the perfect end to a wonderful day.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Dooley-The Interview

After careful deliberation, the von Remicks have elected Dooley to answer the second most asked question we receive:

"Hey Remicks!"

"Um, we are the von Remicks now, get with the program"

"Oh, well that's weird.  Hey von Remicks!"


"Do you like living in Zurich?"

"Why don't we let our family PR rep answer that for us.  It worked so well for Tiger Woods"


So as you can see, we are belly dragging happy here. Gotta go, have to get Dooley ready for his interviews with Larry King and Barbara Wa Wa Walters.