FOWC with Fandango: Number

Basel to Solothurn 05.09 (4)

Numbers are a funny thing, they our anchor in language. Perhaps it is because you can speak a number in any language. You might be in China and of course you cannot speak chinese, but you see something you want to buy. The sales lady says something in Chinese and you want three pieces. The wonder of sign language: you point and show three fingers, and everyone understands.

I speak many languages, none perfect. When speaking german I think in german, but if I have to count, solve a mathematical problem, I do it in English. I once had a Pakistani boss who spoke perfect english, but if he had to calculate he would do it in Urdo and really sounded strange.  I speak Italian, speak Russian, speak French, no exactly perfect, but can count in those languages, know the numbers, but if I have to do my own arithmetic, on the market when buying goods, or just for my own purpose, I do it in English. I am sure there are many of you here from various countries, but we all use english here basically as our common language, but if you have to count I would bet that you all count in your mother tongue.

I am sure that Sigmund Freud or Carl Jung or any other psychiatrist could say why. The brain is a calculator, but only in its own language.

Migros Supermarket, Langendorf

FOWC with Fandango: Number

RDP Saturday: Posh

New York 1993

In 1993 Mr. Swiss and I decided to visit New York. Flights were reasonable, they had a president that was a president and so there were no big problems. Of course we hired a suitable car when we were there to travel around. No, not that one, that happened to be parked on the roadside and we thought it would make a good photo of Mr. Swiss in front of a stretch limousine. We do not get them in Switzerland, perhaps one or two in Geneva or Zürich. We mostly used those yellow cars, think they were called yellow cabs – cheap and they got you where you wanted to go.

The real posh part was the journey to JFK Airport. Of course we were excited, the first time we flew across the Atlantic and so we checked in at the airport and registered that we should have a smoker seat (not for me) etc. etc. At that time you were allowed to smoke on a plane.The young lady at the check-in at Zürich Airport said, apologetically, that we would be getting business class seats. I, of course, opened my  big mouth and said we only paid normal, like tourist. She looked at me and said “Don’t ask, you have business”, and so I asked no further questions.

We were seated on the plane in quite comfortable soft relaxing seats, two together,  and sank into them immediately. The place took off and we watched the flight wing its way a cross the world on a TV screen with a map to show our position.

Then dinner was served, and get this: it was in real crockery, plates that could break and drinks in a real glass – no plastic to be seen. Even the cutlery was stainless steel and the food was a delight to eat. This was all pre ground zero time. Oh yes this is the life. During the flight we were pampered with all sorts of nibbles now and again and drinks. I was sure I could get used to this sort of life. Of course there was a normal tourist class in the back seats for the common folk. If only the posh treatment had been carried on when we arrived in New York, but we were all in the queue to be allowed into this great country and being shepherded around by a lady who sort of looked down at us, being foreigners.

All I can think is that there were no smoking seats left in the tourist class, so we were given the business seats because Mr. Swiss smokes. I had given up many years before, and for the first time I was glad he still smoked. He still does, but that is his problem.

So we arrived a week later at JFK again ready for the home flight. Yes, well, forget it. We were again amongst the common folk. Drinks were served in plastic and the food was digestible to keep us alive. One lady had brought her own duvet with her and wrapped herself in it to at least be able to have a comfortable sleep. The seats were four together instead of the pair we had to ourselves when we arrived and the hostesses only arrived to clear the rubbish away. We also noticed we were not amongst the favoured. They seemed to attend more to the young and beautiful and not those that had golden oldie years around the corner.

But once in our lives we were treated as something posh.

New York 1993

RDP Saturday: Posh

Good Morning


Yesterday late afternoon I got this sky above whilst I was sitting on the porch. Did we have rain? I think about 5 or 6 drops then it just went back to a cloudy sky. It was quite windy and the weather prophets said some about a Föhn storm which is a dodgy warm wind we now and again get, something to do with the alps I think. Of course they said it was not for all regions, but in the second half of the night it could rain, which it did not.

Morning clouds

And now I am sitting outside on the porch again at 8.00 am and the southern skies show this. The North is already blue  with a promise of sun, so it seems the weather is really doing what it wants to. I can already hear neighbours watering their gardens, to compensate for the missing rain yesterday.

Clouds 21.09 (3)

The only place I got to see yesterday was the supermarket for the week-end shopping and the mountains were still showing themselves from their better side in the morning.

Our annual Autumn trade fair known as HESO has now opened its doors officially, after the first day which is reserved for the famous and well known in our area. I will probably risk my first visit this afternoon to test the possiblities of driving with a wheelchair. Outside there is no probem,  but in the various halls it could be a little crowded. I am sure when they see me coming they will make room. I saw in the local newspaper they again have a section with animals, a sort of petting zoo for the kids and yesterday they had the first piggy race. Various piglets run against each other and you can even place bets. Actually I feel sorry for the pigs, I am sure that is not their natural state of affairs.

I have a strange state of affairs on my Apple computer at the moment. Some time ago I noticed e-mails we not functioning on my iPhone or my iPad. My computers, the Apple and Windows machine both were OK. I went to the local Swiss com shop and the guy fixed it for me. My iPhone is now OK and so is my iPad but my Apple computer could no longer operate with the e-mails. I made a mistake and phoned their telephone hotline. The guy that answered was OK and I spoke in our Swiss dialect. This was a mistake as he did not understand me and understood only high german. Eventually we got together on my computer. He did all the necessary and was getting the same results as I was. The next step was to be confronted with a screen where I could fill in a new password for my e-mails. I told him forget it, I am not changing my password when it works on the iPhone and iPad as well as my other computer. I think this confused him. Somewhere along the a line contact was broken and that was that. I will probably now get a bill from Apple for the online help that I did not get.  I can manage OK without the e-mail connection on my Apple computer, but it is annoying. One thing I have learned, do not request online information from Apple. The guys do not think they just follow their list and also do not understand Swiss German, which only the Swiss understand.

And now for lack of important notifications to tell you I will close down. Today I hope to be on my travels again to collect some local events by camera. Have fun, see you later.

Pigeons 18.09 (1)