Every now and then I am able to step outside of the moment I’m in and hear our conversations with a new ear. Conversations I’d never have imagined we’d have. Conversations our simple Bragg Creek life didn’t include.
“Hey, where’d you get this American peanut butter?”
Some conversations are odd because of all that is lost in translation – or lack of translation.
Like the newsletter home about the mandatory story telling evening the kids had at school last week. Within the letter describing the evening it was promised that “your children will be abducted…”
Convincing the kids to go and that they would be safe and have fun was a little challenging.
Despite having been here for a good long while now we still find ourselves confused, lost and apologizing for inadvertent offenses. We’ve also pretty solidly flipped the parent/child role when out and about. Any conversation with a local now has me looking to the kids to say “what did that man just say?” or “can you go ask what we’re supposed to do?”
I’m no longer offended when the kids look at me exasperated and say “you didn’t catch any of that, did you?”
“Sure I did. I definitely heard the word genau which means exactly. And I heard immer which I know means always. So, exactly-always. Got it. Clear as a bell”
I’m still working on finding new places and experiences to check off our list. This weekend we set out to experience the FIFA World Football Museum.
The day had an auspicious start, I should have known it was a sign of foreboding.
Turns out the museum is NOT at the FIFA World Headquarters which is located right beside the zoo. Who knew?
After a confusing tour of that part of Zurich, where the kids begged me to just take them to the zoo because “WE’RE ALREADY HERE!!!”, we boarded a different tram and relocated to the museum. (Tough luck kids, I already bought the tickets to the damn museum so we’re GOING to find it!)
Worth every bit of confusion and angst in getting there. Such a great facility.
It was a perfect activity for a day of lousy weather. We were in there for hours and could have easily spent more time there. We would never claim to be hard-core soccer fans but now I’m pretty sure we need to become ones.
Too bad our children have no hopes of playing here. There’s not really the same “let every child play” mentality here. Sport clubs are a big deal here, especially the football clubs. Even if we were to get past the waiting list to join we’d likely not make it past the qualifications. Kids are freakishly good with a soccer ball here. Friends of ours’ son tried to join soccer but was told “there is no team for you” when his skill level didn’t measure up. He was 9. Wow. We’ll stick with hockey…
We wrapped up the day with a stroll along Bahnhofstrasse – the major shopping district in Zurich, all decked out for the holidays.
T’was a fantastic weekend which rounded out a week with a few unique challenges. I had my very first alarm clock malfunction which has pretty instant ramifications when you need to be at work at 5:00am. I impressed myself by how quickly I flew out the door to get there.
Helena had her own challenge this week. Every Tuesday Helena’s class goes swimming. (Swim lessons are mandatory for every child in Switzerland so it is handled by the school.) As with much of what Helena does, she swims with enthusiasm, leading with her teeth evidently. Part of one was left on the bottom of the pool.
This week’s dental appointment should provide great blogging content as I once again attempt to stifle my inappropriate laughter in the face of pain & discomfort for my children.
Who says I’m not rocking this parenting gig!?