Thoughts and observations from my first week living in Switzerland

So I have been here for just over a week now, which has flown by. Everyone has started school and gone back to work and tried to get in to some sort of routine, so that we don’t feel as though we are here on holiday. The title of this blog is a clue to the phrase that I have had on loop this last week as we try and settle in and find our feet.

I’ve also been trying to get my head round all the new acronyms for the schooling here as we have entered the realms of International Schools, so it is all IBs, AP, Homerooms and soccer (I know) etc, but I’m sure we will get there in the end.

We have been to several school orientation days this last week and it got me thinking about different ways of meeting new people – the school is very hot on parent participation (we are off to a sausage sizzle at the end of the week) and ways of getting to know and meet new people – I’m already keeping my eye out for a book club to join, but what other sorts of things bring people together?  and I remembered one of the original ‘speed meeting ‘events that used to be held in many a church hall on a Saturday afternoon (well in Wales anyway) the good old Beetle Drive – fab way to get together with people without the emphasis on having to ask loads of questions, fun too and so simple (Beetle drive rules here) but I do love it; perhaps I will suggest one, the children will be over the moon at the idea 😉  it was a simple existence in North Wales in the 80s (I jest).

beetle drive
No better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than teamed up with a pensioner rolling a dice at snails pace ….

As well as looking for a book group – (15 mins talking about the book and then the rest of the evening spent chatting and having a drink) I am also wondering where the best place would be to get a good afternoon tea in the Zurich area – I will enjoy finding out and taste testing, will let you know.

I also want to get in to a routine of doing a morning walk after youngest has left for school. The scenery is so stunning here and there are some amazing places on the doorstep to walk to, so I must get my backside in gear and do it before I start work for the day. I have been doing Slimming World  since May and want to add exercise to my regime so I can try and keep the weight off here in the land of the Toblerone. This would also ensure that I am not still in my pyjamas at lunchtime sitting on the sofa working with one eye on Homes Under the hammer (yes we have UK TV too).

homes under the hammer
We will never know what June from Bristol did with that awful crazy paving ….

So as well as all the masses of new school stuff and local things in general to learn there are also some other things that we have to get our heads round, one being that children here can drink at 16, yes I know, this will take some getting used to, probably not by the older children though ….  Another one is recycling, with the Swiss being world champions – the recycling centres are like a round from the krypton factor without the lovely Gordon Burns, but a team of eagle eyed Swiss recycling centre operatives instead (who are very helpful), with the odd Swiss pensioner thrown in as wing men patrolling the station because they too are experts. There are so many different places to put all the different types of plastics –  I’ve already come a cropper with a Starbucks Macchiato carton – not being too sure where to put it I threw it towards the most appropriate hole and then stood back as someone next to me was instructed in quick Swiss German where to actually put it – so I am still none the wiser, but it did put me in mind of a certain Life of Brian scene – ‘she did it’, but hats off to them, they are super organised and the places are spotless, and we did get awarded a bar of chocolate on our last visit for being good recyclers, they’d obviously missed Macchiatogate.

recyclking wonderland
It’s a recycling Wonderland!

So that’s my week so far, but what else have I been up to when not sorting my plastics:

What I’m reading: I am reading the latest Anthony Quinn;  he is one of my favourite authors at the moment and I would recommend reading all of his books – they do follow an order. I am reading Eureka

What I’m dipping in to:  I always have a book at the side of the bed too that I can just dip in to – at the moment it is a Miss Marple & Mystery by Agatha Christie short story  love it!

Book at bedtime

What I’m watching:  attempting to carry on with House of Cards Series 5, but keep falling asleep because we always watch in bed. Love this show, they are a super creepy pair and I can’t recommend it highly enough, especially if you were a Westwing fan.

A trip back down memory lane; indulge me on this one because I still have one leg well and truly in the 80s  – my ‘who remembers’ this week is –  Marmalade Atkins, I think that we should all channel our inner Marmalade sometimes.

marmalade atkins
Heroine to many a young 80s schoolgirl – played by the amazing and much missed Charlotte Coleman

So that’s it from me for the time being, thanks for reading, more soon

Sarah-Jane x

Brilliant blog posts on


  1. Lovely that you seem settled in, be lovely to read your blog and the new challenges/differences and adventures you’ll embark on… good luck all x


  2. I bloody love it! Just like an episode of House of Cards ♣️I can’t wait for the next one! Perhaps you could ‘knock up’ a few so I can binge read!! Xx


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