Thursday, April 12, 2012

What I Love about Switzerland/Geneva [Live List]

Lists Intro
Hi, guys! This post is a Live List, which means that I'll update it any time I have a new idea to add to it. I think it's quite a neat concept since I'm trying to be as active here as I can and help you out with some tips or other info. I explain how these posts are supposed to work here, but the basic idea is that as I'm super busy most of the time these days, I've decided to compile some lists to give you content without the fluff. I'll still write longer posts whenever I can, but I on a daily basis I might just update the lists. So let's get started and see what I Love about Switzerland/Geneva! Don't forget to check your fav lists from time to time, and feel free to suggest new items or new topics in the comments section. ;)

What I love love love about this place (in no particular order):

  1. The air. It's so fresh and clean and 'natural' smelling, even in the city center! OK, there are traffic jams and if you stick your nose in a chimney or something, sure you can find some smog, but boy this city/country rocks when it comes to air quality!
  2. The food. Every place I've been to has its own specialties, and they're all delicious. Geneva's a little difficult for vegetarians, but still, the multitude of Italian restaurants and Swiss cheese dishes make sure you'll never go hungry. And my hubby's a great fan of the potato-based cuisine of the German speaking part. To me all this is just so yummy I want to go and yodel! :D
  3. The view. I can't even begin to explain. Breathtaking. The fact that anywhere you go in Geneva, anywhere you look, there are snow-capped mountains around and they are always sweetly calling to you to go and enjoy...
  4. The hikes. No need to go into details here. Google it and you'll see. Or ask anyone who's done some. That is, if you can get hold of them, because I'm not sure anyone trying the Swiss walks would ever want to leave them. :)
  5. The things to do. I guess I'm one of those people who easily enjoy any place they visit. I think the key is to let all your expectations and habits go and enjoy the flow. But I especially love the ambiance of Romandie (the French speaking part), as it transforms into a different type of luna park each season. I can't vouch for other areas, but around here you'll always have something to do. Skiing and snowshoeing, fondue and raclette parties in winter, hikes and festivals, pedal (and sail!) boats and grills in summer. And all kinds of good stuff in between, weather permitting.
  6. The size. Switzerland is small, compared to many other countries (even Hungary!) but packed with the gorgeous, the yummy and the exciting. I've just noticed that we're getting lazier and lazier and moan about taking a 2-hour trip for a (world-renowned breathtaking) hike. We're so used to having natural beauty and lakeside fun at arm's length that we find traveling more and more burdensome. However, I'm looking forward to changing that in the near future -- I'm about to learn to drive! No more moaning, hubby! Load up the trunk. ;)


Thanks for reading.
Don't forget to come back and check the list
every once in a while, I'll update it
as soon as I have some more nice stuff.
Have an awesome day.
Cheerio! ;)
fleur

What I Miss the Most [Live List]

Lists Intro
Hi, guys! This post is a Live List, which means that I'll update it any time I have a new idea to add to it. I think it's quite a neat concept since I'm trying to be as active here as I can and help you out with some tips or other info. I explain how these posts are supposed to work here, but the basic idea is that as I'm super busy most of the time these days, I've decided to compile some lists to give you content without the fluff. I'll still write longer posts whenever I can, but I on a daily basis I might just update the lists. So let's get started and see what I Miss the Most! Don't forget to check your fav lists from time to time, and feel free to suggest new items or new topics in the comments section. ;)

What I've been missing the most since I moved Switzerland (in no particular order):

  1. Friends & Family. I don't think I need to explain. They're the only ones I cannot import (though I try to from time to time...) and I miss the most sorely.
  2. Warmth. The Swiss are a curious lot in my experience. I find it much easier to mingle at work and talk to people than in some other countries, but it's way more difficult to become friends with anyone here than back home, let alone form stronger bonds. People are really polite and nice here in Geneva (well, there are jerks anywhere) and they tend to be quite open minded, but jeez it's so hard to get them talk about anything more... uhm personal. (I think it's because so many of them have had traumatic lives and I blame their family model!)
  3. Some foods. (Like real Eastern European cottage cheese and tons of ground poppy seed) But these really shouldn't be so high up in the list. =D
  4. A day without wind. Two words: La Bise.
  5. Honesty. Oh, my, where do I begin? Let's just say that the people of Geneva are a pretentious lot and I wish they were less hypocritical from time to time. There are too many taboos in this frikkin' society and even the most open minded people will give you the good old juice if any of those comes up. I actually sometimes enjoy teasing them, but I'm baaaad. =D
  6. Simplicity. That's mostly Geneva, and it's somewhat linked to honesty. There's so much poshness in this city, it's unbelievable. I enjoy teasing people about this too (money's one of those taboos), but I sometimes seriously get tired of it. Those days I just put on a pair of (gorgeously cut) no-name jeans and a blasphemous brandless handbag, and leave home determined to win a glaring match with anyone who dares to stare.
  7. Speaking up. I guess it's strongly linked to the others,but I find keeping quiet very hard. If people would call cheaper clothes charming but lie in your face about how much their holiday or apartment costs and still keep whining about gas prices, I'm itching to give them a piece of my mind. All right, fair enough, they're adults, they can lie and whine for all I care. But the fact that I have to do it too still bugs me. Ohh, I guess I'd rather zip up than join in their "fun", so yes, for the moment silence is golden. But I'm still looking for a way to be the wittier. :)
  8. Lazing around. Well, this is hard to explain. I guess it's the world we're living in, where time flies by so fast. But while I'm just as busy in Geneva as I was back in Budapest, my impression is that I couldn't just laze around here the way I used to in Hungary. I remember hanging aout in parks and cafes, watching people pass by and just read or browse a magazine, alone, or chatting about arts and psychology with friends. I guess what I miss most are the friends to hang out with. Most of my friends here are either busy or live in other parts of Romandie. But there's also the buzz of the city and the fact that while in Hungary it's cool to do nothing publicly and be proud of it, the Swiss are much more studious.


Thanks for reading.
Don't forget to come back and check the list
every once in a while, I'll update it
as soon as I have some more nice stuff.
Have an awesome day.
Cheerio! ;)
fleur

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

What Makes You Happy

I've studied a lot of psychology, so I happen to know what actually makes people happy. Interestingly enough, it's not a life without problems. In fact, psychological happiness is a result of struggle and success. Much like a thermostat, our body and psyche constantly works on righting wrongs, that is, achieving a state most advantageous for our existence. We have different needs, but, be they psychological or physical, they all need to be catered for for us to feel comfortable. And whenever a meter returns to state "normal", the system rewards one with a feeling of relief, no, more than that: happiness.

But is this really all there is to it? Isn't there anything else science might have forgotten about? Well, you know there's always that unexplainable fraction of a percentage point that we often call nature's randomness. In humans, it often manifests in a desire to sometimes act against their best interests. Of course it has been established many times that completely selfless deeds don't exist. However, I believe that the fact that some still long for the ability to commit one shows that nature's best take on randomness, the human soul might still be too random for science to explain.

So how can you be happy if you have your human needs to deal with, plus all the special aspirations that make you who you are -- and, you're even 'gifted' with a soul and it's crazy urges, however small or human those are?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A List of Lists (i.e. What's New)

 Why posting has become difficult
I wish there was a way to upload short posts and edit them on the go... I've tried the android app but it didn't work that well. =( Much of the silence here these days is due to my nomadic lifestyle =), since I work in a number of locations strewn across the whole town. And I travel on foot, for a number of reasons. (Actually, that could make up a list in itself...)

So I'm not really in a posting position most of the time. I'd love to dictate posts on the go and only edit them once I have some time in front of a computer, but I still haven't figured out how that could work in a time-efficient and totally-not-nutty sort of way. (Let's be honest, it looks weird.) But I have a feeling that we're getting there, technology developing rapidly and me becoming less and less interested in what other people think.

What this post is about...
But till then I want to keep entertaining (or annoying ;D) you guys. And I've come up with a cool way of doing so, all the while continuing to roam the streets and do 3645789462 things at the same time. no, it's not twitter. (For a number of reasons, though I'm sure you're not interested to see the list.) It's a series of lists. Yes, you're right, you'll have to do without the narrative, which I'm sure is one of the reasons you're reading these posts. (No, I'm sure it's not. It's actually my compensation for writing them. =D) But you'll get all the meaning. I'll still be posting longer pieces from time to time, but from now on there'll be a lot of shorter ones.