Saturday, August 2, 2014

My multiple lives

So somehow these past few weeks have been overly full – or I have been overly lazy as
Blogging has fallen by the wayside.

One of the reasons, of course, is that I have had my older son home for 10 days, the younger has been here a few weeks longer and my housemate and husband are also in residence. The more humans I have to interact with, the less I am on my computer – living life instead of writing about it – although at other moments I was capable of doing both. Age? Interests?

This past week is a good example of my multiple lives:
Took son #1 to the airport Tuesday (having pre-celebrated my birthday with both boys the night before), waited a few hours then picked up my housemate and her husband. Wednesday went so fast that I only visited a friend. Thursday we had agreed, the housemate and I, that we would celebrate our birthdays finally, throwing in the opening of the Christmas (past or present?) gifts that her daughter had sent in June (that way the husband had a gift as well).  In our usual manner, champagne, nibbles and lots of laughter.

I got the Kindle that I had requested – thank you to both sons and housemate – somewhere I may have written a blog about how much trouble I had actually getting the mail carrier to deliver it as I wasn’t at home the first time they came! I am looking forward to peacefully getting some things on it next week when I have a wee bit more time.

Yesterday, Friday, was our National Swiss holiday and multiple lives may not even cover it!
We started the morning attending the brunch up at in the village, hosted in the grounds of the “castle” where the German Ambassador to the U.N. lives (fittingly this property was originally a brewery). He is a true ambassador in that he has made an effort to become part of the community in which he lives (something that I don’t recall any other of the ambassadors living in our village doing!). Here our volunteer firemen are the ones who arrange and serve at such events and I was glad to see that some of those young men who attended school with my sons are now following in their father’s footsteps. It is also traditional for the food itself to be served by our city administrators – a great way for the community to learn more about them as well as interact with them on a casual basis. This makes for good cohesion.

That done it was home to prepare for my traditional August 1st party. What started approx.. 30 years ago as a way of entertaining other foreigners at loose ends in the middle of the summer has become a way of touching base informally with my friends. A way of honouring the country in which I live as well as all the diverse nationalities living in this canton.

Last nights group was no exception: Swiss from one of the German-speaking parts of the country (who feel just as “foreign” as many foreigners), a half a dozen British who grew up elsewhere (and not always in Britain), a couple of Welsh, my housemate who although born in the USA is now only Swiss, her husband, an American; a couple of Germans who came over 40 years ago; an Armenian who fled her country as a child; an Egyptian whose father was one of the nicest people I have known; another American who came to France in 1971 – and never left; another Swiss who grew up in Holland then spent many of his early working years in Kenya; his wife who is of Italian origin but also grew up in Kenya; their daughter who married a French-man and is now living in Dubai and that’s not an exhaustive list! We could have held an UN meeting (and maybe have solved the world’s problems in minutes with very little conflict).
D-Ls photo: I forgot to put the memory card in my camera so no photos of my own!

Then just after everyone had gone home and it was dark from my balcony those of us remaining in the house enjoyed fireworks from one of the neighbours (who this year made them even better and more visible by doing them off rafts in the lake) accompanied by those of a village across the lake and then as a low carpet others from various points in the distance: an explosive and colourful ending to my multiple day.