Happy Halloween!

The pumpinks are smiling also in Switzerland in the night of Halloween!

It should be certainly a trick, rather than a treat…
… especially if you think that one of the most American “celebrations” is very popular also in the Confederation, where the USA are not so beloved and it is very rare to find someone not blaming the US for something!

Red sky in morning, saylors warning; red sky at night, saylors delight

Some days ago my working day started with such beautiful natural spectacle.
The famous proverb tries to explain any… red sky. Depending on the time of the day, if red, the sky is supposed to be a sign of good or bad weather…

In Switzerland there are no sea and saylors (maybe a few at the lakes…): therefore, in front of the beautiful morning red sky, the best option was just to be stunned!

Opening times

The main three and “historical” supermarkets of Switzerland are for sure Coop, Migros and Denner. Nowadays Aldi and Lidl are expanding quickly and fighting with the three “old” ones!
In the Confederation there is a curious specialty. Shops (of course led by supermarkets) open on Saturdays slightly earlier than during the week and eventually close also earlier. If this is logical, considering the need for sleep of a normal working person… I leave to your judgement.

Now, during one of my expeditions to the Swiss expensive shopping world, I noticed the strange sign of the photo. It took me many minutes to read it, re-read it… and accept its weirdness! Is it really so?
I was surprised and even amazed by the emphasis used to underline the fact that that specific Denner has an opening time on Saturday which is… exactly the same as every other day of the week!
Thanks to remind me this! Otherwise I might have risked to confuse the weekend with a normal weekly day!

You can forget it!


Picture: copyright Nike.

A nice slogan by one of the most famous sportwears in the world.
It seems to be a slogan also in Switzerland, for sure in the German speaking Switzerland, where the Confederates speak their “Mundart” (Swiss German dialect).

DAS CHASCH VERGĂ„SSE! (You can forget it!)

The noisy sentence above is quite interesting, especially in the work environment, which is one of the main sources of nice portraits of the most genuine Switzerland.

Whenever a Swiss is cornered by a colleague with a difficult question or a certain activity to complete within a tight due date, he/she starts declaiming the mentioned slogan. Possibly repeating it more than once to chase away any possible doubt!
Are you asking a Swiss something which is slightly outside his/her mindset?
Are you needing something from a Swiss which is not the most common thing he/she was expecting?
YOU CAN FORGET IT!

Enjoy Switzerland… but not in Switzerland!

As Swiss, the national airline of the Confederation, promises, you should enjoy Switzerland not within its nice landscapes, but by boarding the red crossed air carriers.

They meant to emphasize the quality of the Swiss airline, but I like to… misunderstand this ad.

Enjoy Switzerland… by escaping it! By flying somewhere else in the world! You will find: flexible thinking, lively cities even after the sunset, nice food and friendly people…

The “ruin stone”

The “Ruine Stein” is the remaining of an old medieval castle (probably from the 11th century), which dominates the famous thermal town of Baden.
It was a castle… now it is just some stones on the top of the urban settlement.
As everything important in Switzerland, also this stone is proudly having its own flag: the white, red and black ensign of Baden.

The best way to reach this “monument” is by climbing a long stairway, starting, quite hidden, from the city centre.
I faced the long starway last Saturday… sweating and gasping, I succeeded in conquering the top (dramatically overtaken by my two daughters, who where going up light like two Capricorns, while I was trudging slowly behind like an elephant!).

The view from the top or even during the ascension is quite spectacular!

And the nature around offers nice flowers not so easy to see in this part of the Confederation.

The adventurous walk to reach the top of the “stone” is nice and worthy… but do not expect to find the fairy tales’s castle, because you would be disappointed.
Just think that you climb a stair to go higher and higher, to reach a stone, which is not just “a stone”, but the “ruin stone” of Baden!
And do not imagine to reach the clouds or the stars at the top of the stairs, because the ascension just take the not so epic time of 10-15 minutes, in a very calm pace!
Quite epic, instead, is the famous “Mr Pickwick” pub (facing the “entrance” to the stairway): for sure not a ruin stone, but rather a milestone in the late afternoons and nights of Baden town!!

Tax declaration in Switzerland… almost a pleasure!

Finally it’s done! My tax declaration 2018 is completed.
I just brought it to the finance department of my village today, tightly complying with the usual due date of the 31st of March!
In Switzerland the fiscal federalism is an actual reality! As calculated in the declaration, 85% of my taxes will be used in the Canton and the village and just 15% for the state.
Therefore the money will be mainly used “locally” to cover the needs of the population.
As a motivation for the tax declaration, together with the instructions, we, in Canton Argovia, received an interesting letter explaining some facts about our Canton and the use of the tax money in the last five years.


The population increased by 5.4% from 636’000 to 670’000.


The number of children in the primary school and kindergarten increased by 5.2% from 73’500 to 77’400.


The jobs in the Canton for every 1’000 inhabitants decreased from 6.1 to 5.6 since 2013.


In 2017, Canton Argovia could reduce its debts by 67.5 million CHF.


The “Programm Hightech Aargau” promotes innovation with 26.5 million CHF.
Canton Argovia supports companies which are developing innovative products or applying efficient processes.


The offer of digital services of Canton Argovia is continuously increasing with 5G-E-Government projects. For example, now it is possible to register an address change just electronically.

These facts show that the money paid with the taxes is operationally used near us, for us!
In Switzerland it’s happening… in many other countries not really!