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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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Monday, March 28, 2011

So Cute that "Cute" Doesn't Cut It

Just a little diddy from the Serengeti. I think you are looking at the 3rd Cohen brother with my film skills. Think they have room in their family for this rising star?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Oh Deer

The Boy and I were looking at various hotels in Switzerland for an inpromptu weekend getaway. One particular hotel caught my attention as it had a very liberal animal policy:

This particular hotel doesn't want to lose out on the very important "families with companion deer" demographic. If you don't already know, 100 Kilos is about 220 pounds. This 5 star resort not only allows giant deer, they apologize in advance if you want to bring a deer that is too gargantuan and exceeds their policy. At least the mystery of where Old Saint Nick spends his holidays is solved.
Sunday, March 13, 2011

Dolly Parton Has Got Nothing on Me...Except Boobs

For the past year and a half, whenever anyone asked me how being a Hausfrau was, I would answer: "It is great...I keep really busy". Once I started working again I found out that there is a huge difference between keeping busy and being busy. Now that I have a job, I AM busy. It isn't an option or a choice anymore. The verdict on the new job? I am really enjoying it and I thought I would share with you a few random thoughts on my new life.

1. Hammer time - I have often wondered what dressing professionally would be like. Prior to this new gig, I had two jobs in my professional career and both had no dress code. I could wear jeans and sneakers if I felt like it and often times I felt like it. The mystery is now over. I look good but I don't know if I necessarily feel good. The restrictive panty hose, the getting up at 6 am so I have enough time to style my hair and paint my face, the shoes. Oh the shoes. After 10 hours in a 3 inch heel, looking good never felt so bad. It seems like my lifetime of being flat footed and fancy free has meant that my toes, specifically my left big toe, were ill prepared for the impact of daily high heel shoe wearing. I seem to be on a crash course for a full scale hammer toe. The good news is, we now have a tool to hang pictures up with on our very white, very bare apartment walls. It is too legit, too legit to quit.

2. Too PC - When the Boy and I have our work laptops at home, we have a total of 5 computers. FIVE. We have more computers than a NASA station but that doesn't mean we can do anything amazing. In fact our computers do nothing amazing. Our brand new MacBook aka "Bad Ass Mo Fo" managed to delete our external hard drive in less than 2 seconds. Unfortunately that is the only thing it has managed to do faster than "Old Girl". Old Girl is the PC that prompted the purchase of Bad Ass Mo Fo. She was obviously entering menopause as she had uncontrollable heat flashes that could only be managed by a rather large book that I will never read and a bag of frozen peas. The remaining 3 computers are all work machines, which the Boy and I have nothing against, but we can't use them for anything outside of work.

3. The Swiss like to party. They like to get down - The company I work for is in two buildings, each consisting of 5 floors. On every floor there is a break room and in every break room there is a sparkling clean refrigerator. In each unbelievably clean fridge there is some sort of alcohol. I have seen champagne, wine, beer, wine coolers...you name it, I have seen it. It is not uncommon for people leaving the company to have their going away parties at the office and I have heard other occasions have prompted the popping of a cork or two. This wouldn't fly in most companies in the States for fear some idiot would get way too drunk and do something way horrible resulting in the company getting way sued while the idiot gets off with a slap on the wrist. Call the Swiss boring if you feel the need to (I don't), but don't call them "Too PC"...that name is reserved for me. (If you didn't get that, refer to #2 and be amazed by my brilliance.)

As I said before, the job is going really well. I am learning a ton and getting to know a lot of great people. Most of all, I feel like my life is feeling more normal...well as normal as living in the middle of Europe and down the street from the Lindt Factory can be.
Sunday, March 6, 2011

Excuse Me While I Kiss the Sky

My Story, My Reason...

I looked at the old brown desk for what seemed to be the 100th time. I had to make sure I had everything. Insanity...check, sunscreen...check, rain gear...check, Xanax...check. It seemed everything was accounted for, so I sat down to use the mirror for what would be the last time over the next 7 days. Staring at myself turned out to be no ordinary exercise. I searched, I looked, I cried, I shook. I realized something was missing from my packing list. My reason. My reason for hiking a mountain with "kil a man" as part of its name.

It would have been easy to stare back and tell myself I was doing it for my Father. Deceased since I was 13, I have spent a lot of time trying to devote different things to his memory. It would have been so easy to do it for him too. He always told me I could do anything, be anything...as long as I didn't become a cheerleader. Even he had his limits. But this time, doing something like this for him seemed unfair. Unfair to me.

I recently read a person suggest that this isn't something you do "just to check a box". Did climbing this mountain demand a reason outside of simply checking a box? I respect a person who at least creates boxes to check. Maybe I didn't need a reason after all.

I hiked this mountain with a 70 year old woman whose reflection told her to spread her husband's ashes on the 4th anniversary of his death. She made it.

I hiked this mountain with a man who previously failed to summit. He made it.

I hiked this mountain with a woman whose primary goal in life was to push herself and create new boundaries by stepping outside of old ones. She made it.

Then there was this one woman I hiked with. She lived most of her life from a place of fear. Fear of failure, fear of dying, fear of living, fear of loss, fear of life without chocolate. She always questioned her toughness. It was a constant question mark and at times her reflection looked like the Riddler from Batman. For her, hiking this mountain meant finally proving she was made of sturdy stuff. She hiked every day with a purpose. She found each new day meant more confidence. She enjoyed the natural beauty around her and marveled at the fact that she was not only doing this, but doing it well. Was she ever fearful? Yes, but her toughness never faltered. Not once.

Did she make it? Yes, I made it.