15 December, 2019

This time next week Julie and I will be back in the Midwest. We are flying home for Christmas. As I am writing this it is 4:30 AM in Chicago, so hopefully this time next week we will be in a hotel near the airport sleeping soundly before waking up to drive to Mitchell. The reality is that I will probably sleep for about 2 hours, and then be wide awake. I know jet lag hits other people differently, but for me the west bound trips are the worst, and it will probably take two or three days to recover.

I spent this past week cat sitting. I believe I had talked, in an earlier post, about the problem I was having with Eowyn. I did find someone to come to the apartment, check the food and water and empty the litter box. To try and save a little more money, I worked out a deal with the cat sitter. She was going on vacation this week, so I have been doing the same for her. I walk to her apartment, play with her cats for a little, and make sure they are fed and watered. It was good to have a job for a week! 🙂

We also spent this past week looking for little gifts to bring back for family. Of course Chocolate is a big part of that. I have 5 KGs (11 pounds) of chocolate that have to go into my suitcase! Julie is already talking about all the shopping she is going to do at home. I think I have her convinced to put one large suitcase inside another. So that she will have an empty suitcase she can fill in Indianapolis!

I have never been much of a wine drinker. Julie and I went to our favorite restaurant and I finally realized why. Wine is not like beer, or booze. A Jack and Coke, is always going to taste like a Jack and Coke. A Heineken is always going to taste like a Heineken. You know what you are getting every time you order. Wine is different. One cabernet is going to taste significantly different than another cabernet. However, once you pay for it you are stuck. Just like last night we bought a bottle of wine with dinner. Swiss prices, remember are different, so the cheapest bottle of wine on the menu was roughly $60. There was a reason it was the cheapest wine on the menu. It was bad!!!! However, it isn’t like you can return it once the cork is out. After paying that much I did drink my share, but I shuddered after each sip! I tell you this because one surprise I got this week was the delivery of some of the wine we bought on the Zürich Wine Boats.

Swiss wine

We were able to taste this wine on the boats, and both Julie and I thought it was the best wine we tasted! All of the other wine we ordered had been delivered, but we heard nothing from this company. I sent multiple emails, I messaged them on Facebook. I had given up hope. It showed up on Wednesday. So I made sure that our dinner that night would pair well, with some wine!

Back home it is kind of expected that when your office throws a Christmas party that spouses are also included. I do not know if it is an AMCOR thing, or a Swiss thing, but on Thursday, Julie had her office Christmas party. So I was left to fend for myself. I made my favorite swiss dinner Fondue…. I mean it doesn’t get any better melting some cheese, dipping some bread or veggies into the cheese, and then go straight to your mouth! MMMMMMMMMMMM!

Fondue for 1

Julie and I both enjoy the Glüwein stands. We have decided that this something we are also going to bring back home. I messaged George the items he needs to bring down to Mitchell for us. We are going to make it Christmas Eve, so that our family can share in the Swiss/German experience! It is pretty easy to make.

Indredients needed: 1 bottle of red wine, 3/4 cup water, 3/4 cup sugar, one medium sized orange, whole cloves, and a cinnamon stick. Mix the sugar and water. Bring to a boil. While the water is boiling slice the orange leaving the peel on. Once the water boils turn the heat down to low. Place a dozen or so cloves, the cinnamon stick, and orange slices into the water. Pour in the wine, and let it heat. Do NOT bring the mixture back to a boil. This boils off all the alcohol! Serve steaming hot!

It is great for a cold winter day!

Glüwein cooking!

After we sampled the Glüwein, Julie and I went down to the Landesmuseum for a bit. They have a big Christmas display in the courtyards. One of the displays is a 20 minute Christmas movie Swiss style. The story is pretty simple. The Christmas Monster goes on an adventure to find the ingredients to make Christmas cookies. His friends come over to help bake the cookies, and they wind up burning down his house! Through the magic of Christmas, all of his other friends get together, and rebuild his house! Pretty sappy, but it was fun! You can also see one of the movies I made on my Facebook page. I recorded the video live for a bit while we were there.

I found a girlfriend during the movie. Julie wasn’t happy, but she said she understands….. We were standing next to a family waiting to get in, and their toddler took a liking to me. She kept pulling on my coat, until I would pay attention to her. The little girls mother didn’t appreciate it, but who can resist the smiles of an 18 month old! I kept looking down at her smiling and waving, she just kept grinning and laughing. It was kind of funny.

Illuminarium Show at Swiss National Museum

Anyway that is about all for now. Julie and I are now watching the radar intently, hoping the rain will blow over, so we can go on a hike this afternoon. The next time I write something I will be back in the US! Talk to you soon.

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