The modern scrapbook: Follow the adventures of an American girl, living in Switzerland for almost three years, and her wild Swiss friends in her quest for the quintessential Swiss experience (and a few American ones).

Monday, August 27, 2007


So I had the pleasure of going to my very first football game on Saturday. F, a friendly Bernese guy from work, had invited KC and B to the football game, and I invited myself, as I've never been either. So along with DK, a wild German football fan, we went to the FC Züri vs Bern Young Boys game, sitting in the Bern section.

Of course, all my dreams about a wild European football game came true. The stadium was the size of my high school (American) football stadium--we could barely see the scoreboard. Per local custom, we were separated from all the FC Züri fans in a standing-room only section. It was going very, very badly for the away team Bern, and I think I'd never seen such wild and angry fans, screaming, singing, jumping, cussing, waving flags, and swinging scarves. One guy smoked a doobie in my face the entire time, and I feared that another guy would jump from the stands to commit suicide, he was so torn up about his team. KC bravely wore her Zürich Limmatschwimmen t-shirt she'd bought earlier in the day and got harassed repeatedly.

Of course, I watched the game, too.
There was lots of play-acting injuries on the field, unfortunately less playing by Bern. They were down 4-0, but they finally managed to make an "honor goal" (a fan threw his cup of beer on the field in triumphant celebration), and not 30 seconds later, FCZ made yet another goal, making the final score 5-1 Züri. We left at that point, politely greeted the friendly riot police, equipped with shields, who showed us the way to the bus (a bus just for the Bernese to keep the fans from fightin') and we were serenaded by the many drunken fans on the bus all the way from Hardturm Stadium (yet another moment I was sorry to be able to understand Swiss German), who made the bus ride all the more fun by jumping all over the place. It was a great time, but I probably won't be going back to any football games anytime soon.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Limmatschwimmen finally!!!

After a long wait, I finally got to do the Limmat Swim! K, KC, B, and I all got to swim about 1,333 meters in the Limmat, right through the middle of the city. It took us about 40 minutes. Fortunately, Ciccio made some photos for us.

Beatenberg--where the sun always shines

Originally uploaded by wahartung

So my friend E was telling me about her trip to Beatenberg, which is somewhere on the Lake Thun near Interlaken. She said, it's always sunny and above the fog and there are some great views of the Jungfrau, Eiger, and Mönch. So we, (KK, a Singaporean guy from work, KC, an American who's visiting work for a month, and I) decided to go Sunday for the day.

Well, E was half right. Although the weather was gorgeous as we reached Beatenberg, but as we took the funicular up to the highest point, Niederhorn, huge clouds began to roll through the area. We sat for a while, hoping it would blow over, but although it cleared up slightly at the Niederhorn, there were too many clouds over on the Jungfrau side to see the mountains.

Still, this did not spoil the fun. We impatiently watched a paraglider wait ages for the right "thermal" and finally throw himself off the mountain, and we had a nice walk down to Vorsass through a very interesting part of the forest. We eventually took the boat on the Thunersee all the way to Interlaken, watched the paragliders land, eat some pizza, and go back to Züri. It was a very, very nice day.

For some more pics, check out KC's Picasa pages or my flickr page.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Cupcake Extravaganza!!!

A while back, I'd made some cupcakes (using a vegan recipe published a while back in the New York Times), and she thought she'd died and gone to heaven. More recently, D. passed her Cambridge English Proficiency Exam, and when I asked her what she wanted to do to celebrate, she said, "Cupcakes!!"

So last Thursday she, E, the newly-moved-in K, and I all set out to make three types of cupcakes: Vanilla Cupcakes with Orange Buttercream Icing, Vegan Cream-filled Devil's Food Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache, and Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing. Five hours (and three bottles of champagne later) we had made and iced about 40 cupcakes, the only problem being that the red velvet recipe made about twice as many cupcakes as it should have, and I only have 12 silicone cupcake holders (I'm pathetic, I don't even have a muffin tin!!). We poured them into three or four of the paper liners, but they still flooded all over the place, so we had a few very ugly holders. But anyway, we had a great time, and we fed them to the people at work the next day.

Friday, August 3, 2007

S comes to Switzerland

Originally uploaded by wahartung
My long lost friend S somehow found me and came for a visit. Fortunately for her, it was the week of the national holiday, August 1. We spent the first day of her visit eating Gipfelis, seeing all the sights in the old town, and doing some seriously needed catching-up, since we hadn't seen each other for about seven years. August 1 we spent a couple of hours walking from the Üetliberg to Felsenegg, on the way finding an incredibly charming tea hut with traditional Swiss sausages, apple juice, and tea. That evening, to celebrate August 1, we went all the way to Fallanden to see A, her Musikverein (as S and I were also musicians in another life) and enjoyed the traditional bonfires that dot the landscape. Of course, we couldn't believe all the children we saw playing with fireworks, nor the fact that the only safety measures taken for the big fire were just a couple of firemen with a small bucket of water. Finally, on her last day, we watched the Simpsons movie and eventually met up with J and Notorius Dorius for a chat. It was a great visit and great to finally see S again!


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