Missing things

29 Oct

Some time ago, I posted about things I miss about home and recently I highlighted the BBC news article about the difficulty faced by expats who decide to move back to their homeland. This got me thinking about the things that I would miss about Switzerland if I left today:

  1. Public Transport

Everything runs on time. Ok, there have been a few times when the train is a few minutes late, but nothing like as bad as it can be in the UK. The Swiss public transport is relatively expensive for tourists but you are paying for a service that is on time and gets you where you want to be.

  1. Clean city

There never seems to be any litter. This is partly because there are lots of bins and ways to get rid of rubbish so there is no excuse for people not to dispose of things properly. And partly because there are team who patrol around sweeping and tidying!

  1. Respect

People have respect for others and their property. I don’t think this needs a lot of explanation.

  1. The Mountains and Lakes

For example…


  1. Public Transport (again)

You can always get a seat on a train (generally). The Swiss transport system app also tells you if the route that you want to take is expected to be busy so that you can prepare yourself. When I was studying for my accountancy exams in Manchester and I had to get the train in, I would never be able to find a seat/have to stand/sit on the floor.

  1. Poor English

I find it quite endearing (and at times hilarious) hearing English being used in not quite the right way. One of my personal favourites is ski-driving instead of the English word skiing. The confusion comes because the German word is “skifahren” which literally translates to ski drive (“fahren” is the word that is used to drive a car). I am not making fun of non-native English speakers; more that I find it interesting the linguistic differences between languages.

  1. So many activities

Skiing, swimming, hiking, sailing, Nordic walking, running, paragliding, paddle-boarding, volleyball, Frisbee, photography, painting, rowing, ice hockey… the list goes on and all available in pleasant weather.

  1. Safety

The crime rate is low in Switzerland. Therefore, the need to worry about things like coming home late at night are reduced. That isn’t to say that there is no risk at all and it is advisable to be vigilant at all times but

  1. Not having to drive anywhere

You want to go skiing? No problem, just take your skis on the train and the bus and you will be dropped off directly at the gondola at the resort. The connections are really great. However, having said that, I now have access to a car and I have hit the road for the first time in over 4 years (and on the wrong side of the road!) While the car is more convenient in that I can go and come back when I like, but at the moment I am a nervous driver as I have to remember, not only to stay on the right side of the road but also get familiar with all the signs, speed limits and signaling.

  1. Quiet laws

I appreciate the fact that noise is prohibited at certain times of the day and on certain days so that you are free to relax and unwind. That isn’t to say that I haven’t found myself on the receiving end of noisy neighbours though. I have now moved twice in Switzerland as a direct result of being fed up with noise and decided to move for the good of my health.


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