Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Walk on the Wild Side...

Another great shot from the Worldwide Photo Walk...

Switzerland is full of rules. Sometimes too many. Here are a few things to do if you want to be a bit different and walk on the wild side in Switzerland. Have fun.
  1. 'Rechts stehen, links gehen.' Have you heard this before? It means 'Stand to the right, walk on the left.' It pertains to when you are standing on an escalator - you should stand on the right and walk on the left. Want to be different and piss some people off in the meantime, how about standing in the middle? Or perhaps you want to lay down on the escalator. Be my guest. (Jace hates this too! hehe)

  2. Instead of kissing on the cheek - go for the hug. It throws the Swiss off... way off... perhaps it is too much contact. Then again, I would rather hug a lot of people than come that close to them with my mouth. Up to you!

  3. Don't dry your hair. I do not even own a hair drier. I cannot tell you how many weird looks I get when I wear my hair wet or come to work with wet hair - despite it being 80 degrees out. I think it goes against all Swiss principles...

  4. Eat peanut butter in public. Man - this is almost a universal annoyance to anyone that is not American. No one, especially the Swiss, can fathom why you would spread peanuts on bread - and couple that with jam or jelly and they just go INSANE.

  5. Dip pineapple in your fondue... I love to tell the Swiss what I like to dip in their fondue. If it is not bread, it just drives them mad... 'Oh yea, I love to dip pineapple, broccoli, cauliflower... all that straight into my Appenzeller. Just dip it right in, yum, yum, yum.' And watch the jaws drop.

  6. Answer the phone with just hello. Oh does it stop them in their tracks. RING RING... 'Hello.'....... PAUSE FOR 16 hours... 'Um...Gruetzi, Frau Schweiz am Apparat..'... and then just say 'Ja.' Oh is it great. Then again, I don't like answering the phone so sometimes I just don't.
Got any others? What do you do to have a bit of fun with the Swiss... (before they take their alphorn and beat you over the head with it for making them resent letting you into their great country...) :)
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10 comments:

Ellen Bras said...

Oh my God... This is SO true... At least we know how to have fun :)

M'dame Jo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
M'dame Jo said...

You know, one thing that would make me move to the German part of Switzerland is No. 1. People don't respect it here and it's driving me crazy. When I need to go 6 floors up and everyone stands in the way... I hate standing on escalators, hate it.

Btw, I don't think it's swiss only, but more a northern Europe thing. And an airport thing.

I don't think the hug is a contact issue, but more a question of habit... Even tough hugging is considered as intimate. But we least, when we hug, we don't stick our butts out ;-)

Romy said...

Haha these gave me a good laugh! Way back when my husband and I were just friends, we met up for a cup of tea and a chat after not seeing each other for a number of months. He went for the hug, I went for the Swiss kisses, and we ended up kissing (and I do mean a full-on kiss) on the lips. It was tremendously embarassing... but a portent of what was to come a few years later! ;)

mrsmac said...

Hahaha

In regards to #3- I bought a hairdryer when I first arrived. The cheapest one I could find at Fust. When I took it to the register, the salesMAN, told me that it was just a travel highdryer and maybe I would want something bigger and nicer?

I looked at him with a blank look on my face and said, no, I don't use it that often.

And he just looked at me in shock.

Now I know why!

Chantal said...

Great post! Love the comment about the phone. Sometimes when I don't know who's calling and I just say "hello", there is such a silence and confusion on the line...

And I used to go to the office with wet hair too. No one ever said anything, but yeah, I was always the only one on the train with wet hair...

Tina said...

I haven't really thought about it before.... but this hairdryer thing totally makes sense. I always leave the house with wet hair and get crazy looks on the bus. I think we got it right though. Blowdryers totally damage your hair. Better to let it naturally dry.

Stephersplatz said...

I've had so many awkward encounters with the hug kiss thing. Most of my friends here are expats so I never know what to expect. Yesterday I met a friend and I went for the hug and he went for the kiss. We got a good laugh out of it. :-)

I still never know how to answer my phone. It's weird for me to answer any way other than "hello" or "hallo," but now that I think about it I have gotten a lot of silences on the other end after that.

Stephanie said...

I'm with the Swiss on the escalator thing, especially when the escalators lead to public transit. There's nothing more annoying than tourists milling around in the middle of the escalator in D.C. as if the rest of us don't use the Metro for everyday transportation.

I'm so sick of kissing hello. Where I am now, we have to kiss three times!

Karine BL said...

You are sooo right! After 10 years of marriage to my Swiss usband, he still cannot stand the peanut butter and the many combinations that go with it :-)

 

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