The Raclette Rant

Auf Wiedersehen

30 Jun 2009

Ade. Auf Wiedersehen. Tschüss. Au revoir. Ciao. My time as a Glimpse Correspondent is coming to a close, but my ... read more

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Stories

SwitzerlandSwitzerland

HOW TO: Speak "Swiss"

One minute, the train announcement is in German. An hour later, it’s in French. Then you get off the train and everyone is speaking Italian. Welcome to Switzerland, where ... read more

09 Jun 2009
 

SwitzerlandSwitzerland

SLIDESHOW: Outdoors In Switzerland

Wettingen, a small town about 15 miles west of Zurich, boasts beautiful walking trails, especially in May when the mustard ... read more

04 Aug 2009
 

SwitzerlandSwitzerland

A Raging Party Turned My 73-Year-Old Neighbor Into My Friend

“This is katastrophe!” Frau Voller, my 73 year-old neighbor, stood on the balcony of my apartment, a look of disgust on her face as she assessed the state of my ... read more

20 Jul 2009
 

Insider Tips

Books

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Bring them from Home

At first glance, it appears that almost every other book you’ll find in Switzerland is written in English. Even after living in Switzerland for three years, I still fall ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Getting Around

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Take Public Transport

Don’t even think about driving a car around Switzerland. There’s no need. The tram will take to you the train that takes you to the bus that takes ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Festivals & Events

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Carnival in Basel

To see Switzerland at its least Swiss (or most Swiss, depending on how you look at it) don’t miss Carnival in Basel, held every winter. Creative costumes and masks ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Culture Shock

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Stop that Smiling

If you go around smiling at people and being overly friendly, the Swiss will think you have mental problems. I have had to train myself not to look directly at ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Must Do

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Swim at the Spa

Visit a Swiss spa. For about $20, you can relax in a bubbling swimming pool filled with hot mineral water. Some spas have jets for body massages, bubbling lounge chairs ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Sports

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Wrestle for a Cow

Don't miss a Schwingen match. Schwingen is a popular form of Swiss Wrestling. While hiking the Alps, you just might come upon a couple of men wearing burlap diapers ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Etiquette

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Enjoy your meal

When you sit down to eat in the German-speaking part of Switzerland, do not start eating your food until you have said, "En Guete" to everyone you’re sitting with ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Food

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Nothing is Free

Don't expect extras. Bread doesn't come with butter. Fries don't come with ketchup. A ham sandwich doesn't come with lettuce and a tomato. A Coke doesn ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Film

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The Original

Most films are shown in their original language in Swiss movie theaters since the population speaks so many languages themselves. If the film is shown in English with German and ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Packing

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Come for one season. Pack for them all.

Umbrellas. Sweaters. Hiking Shoes. Don't end up like one of those tourists in shorts standing on the top of a snowy mountain in July wondering why they're cold ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Religion

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Don't Declare

Declare a religion when you register to live in Switzerland and you've just set yourself up to pay extra taxes. After all, nothing is free in Switzerland. Not even ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Politics

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Watch Your Borders

Switzerland has very few national laws; most things are determined by state. And Switzerland, a third of the size of Illinois, has 26 of them. This means that within a ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Music

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Listen for Stress

Radio Stations. Restaurants. The Singing Christmas Tree at the Zurich Christmas Market. They all have one thing in common--American music. Unfortunately, it's hard to find much Swiss influence in ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Sports

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Bad Teams. Loyal Fans.

Soccer. Most Europeans will think there's something wrong with you if you're not a fan. The Swiss are no exception. Even though their team is usually kicked out ... read more

02 Apr 2009
TV

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One Show. Four languages.

Switzerland does a lot of low-budget rip-offs of German and American TV shows. One fun example to look for is the Swiss show, Supermodel, where a bunch of girls compete ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Fashion

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Bring your black

To me, Switzerland often looks like an endless funeral procession--at least in Zurich. Black coats. Black boots. Black skinny jeans. To fit in, wear your black and wear it tight ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Dating

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Go Online

Nothing like a first date activity of milking a cow. But then again, this is nothing out of the ordinary--at least in rural areas of Switzerland. To find your future ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Health

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The Big Desk

The best part about going to a doctor in Switzerland is the "Big Desk." While still in your street clothes, you will talk with the doctor at their desk and ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Slang

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It is shitting on me

“Es scheisst mich an”, literally means, “it is shitting on me” in German. But don’t worry, it’s really just an angry way of saying “I’ve had enough ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Nightlife

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Lollipop, Lollipop

If you want to try something a little different, try going to a Swiss Lollipop Party. Besides lollipops hanging from the ceiling of the club, you'll be treated to ... read more

02 Apr 2009
Being an American

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Obama Mania

Before Obama was elected, I used to whisper a lot. I didn't want people to hear my American English and not like me because of it. But after Obama ... read more

02 Apr 2009
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