Posts Tagged ‘Switzerland’

What’s next

Sunday, March 13th, 2011

Someone once told me…. is good that i plan to come here… but what’s next?

I had no answer for him more than 2 years ago…
and I still have no answer… even for myself now

the more i think about his question, the more i agree…and lost…
what’s next…

so far i enjoyed myself to the max….
i have good job, good friends, and good life…

but i sort of feel something is missing…

before this, i did all my best to realize my dream…
i worked myself to achieve my dream…

and now i realized my dream isnt complete… though i am living it now…

i know, some of you might be thinking that i am crazy to worry for things that aren’t exist…

anyway, i guessed for now, i will travel more, eat more, play more
until i get an answer for the question : what’s next

White Chinese New Year

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

I am gonna have a white and cold chinese new year…
it just feels…….. nothing. 😀

Ya, i felt no chinese new year what sort of excitement…

So i try to create some….
i had my friend couriered me some chinese new year cookies, and i shared it with my colleagues…
i signed up myself to the chinese new year party in Zurich, organised by Malaysian Swiss Association…
i planned to dress in my chinese silk shirt on Monday to work….

Perhaps this chinese new year might be uneventful…
but i am sure this will go down the Zbjernak’s Records Book, as the first time I spent my chinese new year without my family and usual friends……

Oh…. to further decrease my Chinese New Year mood… i will be on duty as call-centre for the whole next week… Yippie!!!



Sunday, January 31st, 2010

Have you seen a snow globe before? The one decorative sphere when you shake it physically, the “snow” particles floats around the water-filled sphere…

Now, i had a feeling that i am living in a snow globe…

nooo…not that i feel dizzy or what, is just that it is winter now in switzerland… and for the past few days, it has been snowing now and then and at times the whole day.

Sitting inside the office… or my apartment, looking out from the huge gigantic windows, the snows were falling… flying around and then it stopped without any notice. After a while, or a few hours, then it started to snow again.

It is as if someone shake the snow globe, put it down, and watch the snow flakes flying around… and when all flakes settled, then pick up the snow globe and shake it again.

I know this sounds stupid… and childish…
but for someone like me who grew up near the Equator,
snow has always been magical 😀

snow covered cars, snow covered road, snow covered roofs, snow covered trees…. these are all just too beautiful

What seems like a normal street, a normal tree, a normal garden, a normal city, they were all transformed into something magical in just a matter of few hours.

Here i shared with you some of the shots i made….








Sunday, December 6th, 2009

It finally snows this week….
for the whole day and it was so beautiful…
everything is covered in snow..
the field, the tree, the cars, the roads, the plants, the mountain, the bridge, the roof….

it was kind of magical… still magical, although this is not the first time i see fresh snow from the sky…

but the sigh of fluffy white stuff falling from the sky…. as if raining… tht just simply fascinates me

Well… tht is the case if i am not outside…
the aftermath of snow is simply irritating…
it is almost impossible to stay dry while walking back home.
i hate the mushy, wet, soggy feet feeling :S

Nevertheless, the view of the mountains surrounding Luzern across the lake is just simply breathtaking…. on a clear day.

We always have foggy day during the winter… or so i was told… so it is a gift from heaven, like today, when the sky is clear and the view is superb!!!

I had fun shopping today…. buying some chocolates and small souvenir for family and friends….

yes… and i will soon be making my first trip back to Malaysia…

time flies, and as usual, that scares me…

the good part is that, i will be having a long long long holiday… and i am really looking forward to it 😀

You are dying? I am sorry but we are full today

Saturday, November 21st, 2009

“I injured my back, can i see the doctor now?”, if this is your question, most probably the answer would be, “I am sorry, but we are full today!”

For me, this is one of the most bizarre differentiations between Malaysia and here.

Back in Malaysia, you can just walk into any clinics at any town, village, city, on any streets and you will never be rejected. Yes, you need to wait in queue, but no, you will never be rejected. I never give a damn thought about it before but now that i am here, i think it is a luxury being able to walk-in to a clinic.

Here, before you go to a doctor, you are supposed to call in and make an appointment. And do make sure you call in advance to have the bookings made. Walking in to a clinic without prior booking is like walking into the office without wearing pants!

And no, no, you are wrong, it is not free… you have to pay a small fortune to see a doctor.

The argument is pretty simple, if is an emergency and life threatening, you should go to the hospital, if is not, then you are fine and you could wait… like everyone.

So what should i do? It wasn’t life threatening to me, but i am still suffering.

“Is full?? Could you see if is possible to slot me in? I NEED to see a doctor today. I COULD NOT stand and I COULD NOT sit!!!!”. And, mamma mia, the reply was very soothing…

“Come at 11am. Thank you!”……. a one-liner, but nevertheless it calms me down!

see, some how, as strict as it is, they do have some place and slot for “emergency”…..

Now just to be fair, I must say that the service provided by the clinic is world class…. very professional and very informative!

When you are given medication, pills come with the original packaging and unlike in some places, the pills come in lose packaging like M&M’s.

Then the doctor explained to you about the medications, informed you about the compositions, and then the way you should take it.

Unlike some places, you get the pills and a brief instruction from a clerk or receptionist!

Now the fun part, you dont need to pay for it on the spot.
You tell your problem, you get your medications, and the Dr shakes your hand and bid you good bye!!!

Thats it…. Swiss efficiency and quality!

I must say that i like the idea… and also the trust given to the people!

The Dr normally send the bills only at the end of the month, or once after 3-4 months. And from there, you will have 30 days to pay for it.

They say it is the same for the dentist, for furniture or any other purchase.

I used to develop and make photo books from online.
Normally I get the developed, finished photo album delivered to my door, together with a bill and i have 30 days to pay for it.

National Day Holiday

Friday, July 31st, 2009

This coming Saturday is the National Day… nono.. not the Malaysia’s National Day, Merdeka…dont worry, i haven’t lost my mind yet… 1.August, it is the Swiss National Day…. supposedly celebrating its 718 years anniversary !
Switzerland’s history can be traced back to 1291, where the first 3 cantons decide to merge and to become a confederation.

It is a remarkable number, if you ask me, for i m so used to national days’ number associated with only 2 digits, as in for this year, it will be the 52nd birthday of Malaysia.

Traditionally, there will be parade, party, fireworks, events, festival all over Switzerland. This Saturday, i would be joining colleague of mine to “celebrate” in Brunnen, a village, a hamlet, a city by Lake Lucerne.

Well this is not a history class,so do read it up from wikipedia, if you are interested.

What i wanted to highlight here is something very different very interesting.

Normally, back in Malaysia, a public holiday, like National Day, is the day where i go for shopping, go for movies, go to shopping malls for trekking, to have lunch, tea, etc, or just simply for windows shopping with friends or family.

Here, Public Holiday = every single shop is closed. And it is the worst, if the public holiday falls on a Saturday. Why? here is the reason why i said it is the worst…

Shopping are literally non-existence on Sundays… as such Saturday has been the day where the whole population seems to come out from hidding, spilled onto the streets, and to do their shoppings, and etc. Shops closed around 6pm on weekdays, except for Thursday (late night shopping) where shops closed at 9pm.

So the catch are that if shops are closed on Sundays, and the Saturday is a public holiday, you could only do you shopping on a Friday. But because Saturday is a public holiday, therefore, Friday is a “holiday’s eve”, and then shops closed earlier (4pm) instead of the normal 6pm. And Friday being a working day, that means no shopping is possible, and hence, Thursday is the only day left, where you could shop and stocked up before the weekends. It is such a frenzy on the supermarket and streets, where everyone try to buy and to stock up their supplies.

So it is kind of weird and interesting and new for me. I had my fair share of frenzy shopping this evening too.

Well, just to paint the right picture, shops in train stations and airport are allowed to be opened 365 days a year. As such, in case of “emergency”, shoppings are still possible in train stations, the popular one being Zurich Train Station and also Zurich Airport.

Miscellaneous cost

Sunday, July 12th, 2009

Living in Switzerland, for sure is aint an easy task…

the high cost of living,the language, the different culture, and now the other things i discovered, the miscellaneous cost.

For example, TV and Radio licenses. These, in malaysia itself was abolished like 20 years ago. I remember the time when my dad had to pay for the TV license in the post office.

I cant imagine having to pay for these fees here in Switzerland, in year 2009. With the advanced technology and the brand conscious society, why cant the TV and Radio stations make revenues from other source, like advertisement, or etc?

Why is there a need to pay for these licenses… where in the first place, i do not have any TV and Radio with me??

Oh …. wait… they said i have INTERNET. i could watch online TV, listen to online Radio, therefore, i need to pay.

It doesnt matter if i want or if i could understand the German, the French or the Italian TV and Radio channel… i have the possibility of watching and listening to it, therefore i need to pay.

And because of this, yours truly, need to fork out additional 50 francs a month…not a huge amount, but it wasnt necessary.

Oh and i also discovered as well… that in order to throw your unwanted furniture or heavy items, you need to buy some stickers……5kg per sticker…

what you need to do is to weight your stuff, stick the numbers of stickers accordingly, and just put it by the road side on Monday or Thursday, someone, would pick it up.

You pay to have it and you pay as well to get rid of it.

How nice….


Sunday, April 5th, 2009

i had been viewing a few apartments in the past few days..
but all of them… were beyond my budget..

one of them.. i really loved it.. the kitchen was magnificent.. newly renovated, with your own washing machine and dryer… with lift, in a good neighbourhood, slightly out of town but with bus stopping in front of the doorstep.

but then i convinced myself, that me here being alone, i do not need such a luxurious apartment… is not that i m going to host lots of party or there will be much ppl to appreciate the beauty of the apartment with me… and i was also worried that i do not have the right/cool/luxury furnitures to furnished the apartment… so i told my relocation agent.. i dont want that.. i want something cheaper…

and apparently according to the agent, it is hard to come by..good location, within my budget and it aint dodgy.

but seems like fate has its way of making things work…
i met a colleague of mine…
and she is planning to move to a new place..
and she is looking for someone to takeover her apartment.

Opportunity strikes… and i told her i want it.
I went to her place.. to look around…

well… good location, in city centre, 1st floor, with lift,
but surrounded by houses and offices, means i need to have the curtains down all the time to avoid giving peepshow to the neighbour, then it is without balcony, and it has no dryer… only washing machine.

i think for sometime.. and finally i say YES… and i sent in my application…. the owner was also delighted and accepted my application…. but one other downside is that i have to pay a deposit of 4-month-rent uphand before i can move in….

sigh….. i hv to tell myself… i will treat it as saving and just go with it.

an idea how it looks like… of course without the furniture… i will hv to get my own couch..

my own cupboard, light, curtain,tables, chairs, bed etc.. but the toilet will come as it is.. only without the shower curtain


Friday, April 3rd, 2009

Schwyz, a basically unknown place to people outside swiss….
A capital city for the canton of the same name, Canton Schwyz, in the central of Switzerland.

Canton Schwyz is one of the 3 original cantons that made up the Confederation of Switzerland.
As i try my very best to make Saturdays my traveling days, i decided to take a day trip to Schwyz…. on last Saturday. Train from Zug, takes only about 30 minutes to reach the “main station” of Schwyz. The trip there, the scenery is amazing… the train wind along the shore of Lake Zug, with these beautiful views… passing by quaint villages, mountains, hills, fields…….

Though for most of the cities in Switzerland, the train will bring you directly to the city centre, in Schwyz, this is not the case. Once arriving in Schwyz, one has to take a bus to Schwyz Post, which is the “city centre” or village center, call it as u like. There are lots of buses that goes to Schwyz Post, and the destinations are normally displayed on the bus. Else, just ask around. IT costs 3chf for a day card.

In Schwyz Post, you will then notice that it is indeed a very small city.. with only a handful of buildings… i felt kind of like Cameron Highlands, in Malaysia. This town is surrounded by mountains and hills… and it looks very natural, very relaxing, very quiet.

There are a few main sights not to be missed, like the gigantic Kollegiumskirche Schwyz, a church i think too big for this tiny city.

Then there is also “the oldest wood building” in Switzerland, as per claimed by the signboard

and also the centrally located St Martin’s church, at the main square…..

and then there is this townhouse…. fully covered by frescoes….

and thats about it… hehehehe… i said is a city tht looks more like a village!

dont u think so?? noticed the snow-capped mountain… partially covered by clouds/mist??

Well there is also a musuem, which suppose to detailed the formation of the Switzerland… and has some national treasures… but i am just not really a museum guy…

So off i went… to a HUGE shopping centre… by swiss standard…

You could choose to walk or take a bus… but walking down hill from Schwyz Post to the MythenCenterstrasse is quite relaxing… and is not really too far… 10-15 minutes, i supposed.

See tht little chapel….?? what a scenery…

Mythencentre has 2 floors, and about 50 shops! awesome… look… they even have H&M, i guessed it means that it is happening! hehehehhehe

Opposite this giant shopping centre….pun intended… you will then see another giant grey building.

With a very very very very distinctive sign… a sign which means Switzerland, and Switzerland kind of centre around it… May i introduce to you (drum rollllll) the VICTORINOX factory. From this factory, swiss army knives are designed, produced and shipped to every corner of the world!

Isnt it amazing? For such a tiny little city-village, you will never expect that it is the birth place for the ever popular swiss army knife! It is such a contrast between the tiny and rural feel of the city, and the amazingly huge “industry” it has within its border.

The other amazing trip would be from here, take a train/bus to Brunnen, and they said they Brunnen is very beautiful and it is situated by the edge of Lake Luzern. From Brunnen, you can then take a cruise to Luzern City… with beautiful dramatic sceneries.. i will try to make the trip..

oh…and next week is easter…and i have 4 days off…including Sat and Sun… i will be going to the Top of Europe!! stay tuned

First Salary!

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009

Yeh… got my first salary in Switzerland….

ONE THING… i really need to take a good look on money spent in food and unnecessary stuffs

apparently after everything..all my commitments back in malaysia, all the transport, rent, insurances, social security, taxes, utilities, i left only 8% of my salary a month for food, toiletries, and other stuff… damn