Sunday, June 22, 2008

Swiss storks bring more than babies...

Swiss storks bring more than babies here - they also bring birth announcement signs!

I have heard about this phenomenon and have seen enough signs now to know that it's a widespread deal. When children are born in Switzerland, the parents put a sign up outside their apartment or home or in the above case on the fire department, notifying the world when their little one was born and his or her name.

I wonder if this is a long, time honored tradition or something just recently invented to celebrate a child's birth. I also would like to know whose responsibility it is to buy the signs - er, I mean, that is if the stork doesn't bring it first... is it the parents, grandparents, friends of the family, or neighbors that manage this kind gesture or perhaps a combination? And how long do these signs stay up - I've seen some that have been on display for 6 months or more.

In the US, I've heard of people getting 'pink flamingo'd' for their child's birth or a birthday, but the birds are gone within a day. I think maybe some families put birth announcements in the paper or send a card notifying friends and family of the newborn's arrival, but this is the first case I've seen of a culture that uses such a public announcement. It seems contrary to the generally private Swiss nature.

So if you know any more - please share your experience with the Swiss Stork signs in the comments!




4 comments:

mrsmac said...

i haven't seen these yet! but i do know that people in my neighborhood back in the states put up storks or balloons indicating a little one had arrived. it usually stayed up for a week or so. but it never, ever had a name. and a lot of people i know didn't put up a sign like that for privacy reasons. too many crazy baby snatchers in the states!

Bluefish said...

I think this is cute:)

M'dame Jo said...

It's adorable... but I've never heard of anything like this on this side of the Saane...

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