Fully & completely here.

A week and a day here and our much anticipated belongings were released from customs! Much celebrating and total chaos ensued as we began the process of unpacking and finding new homes for all our belongings. In the short time we’ve been here I’ve come to truly appreciate a minimalist way of life. Now that all this stuff has arrived its feeling a bit overwhelming.  But I know that as the seasons change we will be glad to have our cozier things. And for the kids, being reunited with their things, having a chance to set up their rooms just-so, goes a long way to making this feel like home. Manolo put so much work and sweat into arranging our cargo. It was far from stress free but such a happy ending – with a surprisingly cheaper price tag than expected. Phew!

The chaos. It was impossible to stop the kids from tearing into the boxes in search of their treasures from home. Thank goodness for the great windows in Swiss homes. They open nice and wide to allow large boxes, furniture, rambunctious children to easily pass through.

My most anticipated arrival…doesn’t she look pretty here? Can’t wait to toodle around the streets like a true local.

In the process of getting our boxes we were able to explore another area of town. Akin to the Meat Packing District in New York I think. Once industrial and harsh, it is being revived to be the pulse of hip and trendy. We notice Architect offices everywhere here – perhaps because our cousin/neighbour is an architect whose office is directly next door. It seems like an architect’s dream here. So much inspiration and variety of mediums to work with. Combining new and old, traditional and modern. It really is a feast for the eyes.

The pretty revitalized industrial area. Home to a youth hostel. Oh the memories of my travels in hostels. This is not a place we’ll be visiting in the evenings on this trip…
Despite still being land-locked Manolo is certain there’s a surfer deep inside. He was excited to find this shop to get advice on the best beaches to travel to.
Old train cars converting to a cute dining spot.
Helena and Bea enjoying the sun after many grey days. I was enjoying the handsome Swiss man walking by. They are all just so put-together and stylish.
These trees were so pretty, like a japenese cherry blossom tree just beginning to bloom. But wait a minute, it’s middle of July…why are they just now beginning to bloom? oh, because the branches are fake, plastic, drilled onto the tree. How very unSwiss! But clever nonetheless.
A very bizzare antique/junk shop. The visit here may give Helena nightmares for the rest of her life. It had a weird carny-feel, creepy clown figuines in odd places. Like a scene out of an iSpy book for you parents out there. But we didn’t leave empty handed…
Super industrial and yet green. And swank loft apartments with spectacular patios.
The bike culture here is amazing. These would be so fantastic for the years with little riders in tow.

A few more great thrifty finds today, the best of which came from the creepy antique/junk shop. Pretty sure I scored the only good deal in the place. Oddly over priced junk (small IKEA lamps for 68CHF) but somehow an item we’ve been hunting for was a mere 15 CHF.

Check out my handy-dandy new electric BBQ! Perfect for our tiny kitchen patio. And essential for tonight’s meal which I had planned without thinking through how I was going to grill it. Proscuitto wrapped chicken with brie and fresh sage. The brie was a necessary ingredient as I was needing to find a way to use up the stinky cheese. The kids’ heads reel back everytime they open the fridge! Mmmmm, stinky cheese…

And so, now that we aren’t beholden to the whims of the customs authorities, we will make our way south to the family house in Lugano. From here we will visit Milan (just half an hour away) to sort out my paperwork. Fingers crossed they refuse to let me work and I’ll be forced to while away my days riding my pretty bicycle through town. Just kidding…sort of.

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