...I suspect I may be the luckiest kid in the world

Tuesday, June 30, 2009


After listening to an evening of both Swiss German and High German I had a couple of epiphanies.

1.0 High German is good. Swiss German is not good. Hochdeutsch ist gut. Schweizerdeutsch ist nicht gut.
1.1 Perhaps I have learnt something after all in German class. I actually understood parts of the High German conversation. I probably made up a lot in my head, but I think I actually understood stuff.
1.2 They actually change rules of pronunciation in Swiss German. Surely this is not legal?

I spent a couple of hours this morning enjoying the sunshine at a new-found spot by the lake. It was just perfect.
2.0 It was only 10 minutes walk from home.
2.1 Entry is via the cemetery. And I was amazed at the perfect condition in which the cemetery and graves were kept. Then again, it is Switzerland - they would not have it any other way.
2.2 You can swim here. There was someone swimming there but I didn't want to get too close - I don't think he had any clothes on. I guess when you enter via the cemetery....
2.3 I would show you photos of this beautiful spot but I want to keep it all for myself...and I forgot my camera.

And in other news, I have been spending quite a bit of time looking up travel plans for when Mum and Dad come to visit. Only 4 weeks today!! I booked Zurich to Venice and the ticket office gave me a box of pasta to 'get me in the spirit of Italy.' I love free stuff...even if it is just pasta...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

4 Cats x 9 Lives

Excuse me, I want my money back. I did not sign up for this. I didn't really want to look after three girls and their three kittens and one cat. I didn't want to know about their half dead birds, half-eaten lizards and headless mice (the kitten's - not the girl's). Nor did I wish to finding puddles of cat pee in the most unusual places or spend a fair amount of time each day looking for a missing kitten to console a sad little girl. I hadn't anticipated becoming fluent in the art of understanding the cat meow and I do not appreciate having to rescue kittens that tried to swim in the toilet. Washing drawer-fulls of clothes just because a kitten or three decided to sleep in there isn't really my cup of tea. I sometimes wonder if the kittens gang up against me - one doing the decoy meow whilst the others jump up on the kitchen table and try to get free food. It's a cat-eat-cat world out there. I will survive.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Testing: A Swiss Story by MLF3

This blog seems to be becoming more and more dominated by MLF3.
However, I've decided not to change the name.
(A Swiss Story by MLF3 just wasn't quite personal enough...)

The latest bedtime trend is for Kylie to tell a story about when she was a child. Or, in the words of MLF3 -'I want a story of when you a kind.'

(And, no, that's not kind
kind 1 (knd)adj. kind·er, kind·est
1. Of a friendly, generous, or warm-hearted nature.

but kind - the German for child).

(However I sometimes perhaps maybe put a kind

kind 1
(knd)adj. kind·er, kind·est
1. Of a friendly, generous, or warm-hearted nature.

slant on myself in the stories. She'll never know.)

Sometimes she even asks for stories of when I was a baby. I may be an au pair with super powers but I do not have that much of an amazing memory. In fact, I'm fast running out of stories. I'm only 22 - how many stories do I really have?

Tonight I may or may not have taken a happening from the life of a sibling and made it my own. (Mum, Dad - have you ever done this?! Is your childhood as I know it a mixture of yours and your siblings?!)

In fact, my memory is fast becoming cloudy and once I tell a story as my own there is a chance that it will forever become mine in my head. Help!
If anyone has any childhood tales they wish to lend me I would really appreciate it. You may or may not get them back.

And in other news, I'm just loving living here. I feel so blessed every day to wake up and be a part of life here. To be a part of a lovely family, a beautiful country, amazing friends and the Lindt shop only a ferry ride away.

Why yes, I am holding a bag of chocolate.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Cat is in the Bag

If it starts like this...

Will it end like this?

Found MLF3 playing with the kittens today and one seemed quite happy to be tucked away in her little handbag. I took such a cute picture of her with the kitten, but can't really include it here ... so you'll have to use your imagination :)

And in other MLF3 news: For many days now we have been working on a certain phrase of hers. When she wants a drink, she always says 'I have thirst.'
Today, after many days of being reminded, she remembered all by herself.
'Can I please have a drink.' In perfect English.

Sweet success.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Suddenly 30

I've returned from escaping across the border for 24 hours.
It was tough.
Ma and Pa were attending a wedding (not their own - this happened several years ago) and so the girls and I hung out in a hotel room with a lovely view of the lake, listening to - you guessed it - ABBA.
We also took a trip to the hotel restaurant where the waiter thought I was their mother.
Seriously, do I look 30?
On outings such as this, where its just the girls and I, I often have to suppress well-earned laughs.
The other adult, in this case the waiter, speaks directly to me only to be answered by MLF1, who speaks excellent German.
I smile and nod, giving MLF1 my full non-verbal support. The waiter then answers MLF1, but still looks at me, speaking to me, and waiting for my response.
MLF1 does not let me down and continues the conversation. And so it goes.
I just smile and nod and let them think I am mute.
An under-aged mute mother who lets her children order what they like off the menu.

I'm planning on heading to Basel tomorrow morning to see Art Basel, which I think is the largest Modern and Contemporary Exhibition in the world. Brad Pitt was last spotted here so I'll be wearing my I ♥ Brad t-shirt tomorrow.

And I'm very excited because my parents have booked their tickets to come and visit in less than 2 months! And I got the Paris leg of the trip in the mail today, so they had better come. I'm not going to return from Paris 3 times just to get my money's worth.
And if anyone has any lovely holiday houses that they wish to lend in Venice, Rome, Florence, Nice, Avignon, Paris or the Loire Valley perhaps you could just pop the keys in the mail and we'll call it even.

Today we went for a walk to Mainau Island where joined a ridiculous amount of tourists (sometimes I like to pretend that I am not a tourist) seeing the most beautiful gardens and butterfly house and played on the most amazing playground, or spielplatz. I got mistaken for the girl's mother yet again (seriously....30?) and I had to eat MLF3's ice-block really fast because she just wanted to play the whistle that made up the stick. One of the many perks...

In other exciting news I got to go toiletry shopping whilst in Germany. Once you leave Switzerland everything is so much cheaper and my thriftiness starts grabbing shampoos and deodorants off the shelves.
I also love pretending that the Euro is the same as the Swiss Frank.

And yes, its 3 AM and I am still not asleep. I think I'm probably too excited to sleep, since I'll probably see Brad Pitt tomorrow. Watch out Angelina.
Now, where is that t-shirt...?

Sunday, June 7, 2009


For those of you who are feeling like a good story, I have a sister.

Actually I have 4 sisters, but one in particular who blogs.

This is her blog and this is my favourite recent story by her.

Just sayin'...

Friday, June 5, 2009

Week At A Glance

Well after almost a week of no blogging (what is the world coming to?!) I'm finally sitting down to type out some events of the past very busy week.
And I'm eating a citron and pepper chocolate. I've been slowly working my through it today wondered at each piece what the bite was.
Now I read the package and it's pepper.
Strange. But good.


The week in a blur:

Saturday - I discovered the most amazing markets ever. I felt like I had died and gone to heaven. 100's of stalls with other people's junk - is there anything better?

Sunday - Somebody had the bright idea for a bunch of us to bike around the Lake of Zug (this may have been me). It's about 40-50 kms around (I think?!) which, I have to say, is a pretty good effort for me.
And for my legs and behind, both of which were quite vocal in their I told you so's in the following days.

But it was a beautiful day and view. We hired bikes for free! which was great, although a couple of the bikes did have baby seats on the back. (Which, btw, were not secure enough to put kids in. They worked well for backpacks though.)

Monday - I was catching the train at 5:59 AM to explore some Swiss Alp-ness. It was an amazing day where I saw too many beautiful things including the highest free-falling waterfall in Europe and also the Trummelbach falls.

We caught the bus, boat and train and I learnt that you can never use your Eurail pass on the Berner Oberland Bahn. Do this, and you will get sent back to section C. The poor tourists next to us were humiliated when the ticket inspector held up their ticket and called the whole carriage to attention, announcing that these tickets were not valid for this train.
He then sent them out of the train and back to section C.
I think they have forced labour back there in section C.

Tuesday - this was my 100th day in Switzerland (yay for me!) but generally not a very enjoyable day. However, I felt much better when an anonymous (but inexperienced with pressure cookers) friend informed me that she had just got pasta all over the kitchen and stuck on the roof.
Perhaps my day wasn't so bad after all.

- We had MLF2's birthday party and I surprised myself by sprouting off a few German words and phrases to the kids. She got some really cool presents (or mega-cool as the kids say) and I'm thinking about inviting the same kids to my birthday party.

- MLF's and I tried to make squishy ballons with flour without a funnel. Didn't work. We somehow managed to get more flour over ourselves than in the balloons.

- MLF1 left the house in the morning in a bad mood and I certainly didn't want the
mood to continue when she came home for lunch.
Enter ABBA. I had ABBA playing at a decent volume when she entered the house and I could literally see a change in her body language. Taking note of that one for next time...