It seems like yesterday that we arrived here in Switzerland, but it was already a year ago. Time flies when you're walking dogs in a beautiful country.
The harvest is here. The kids are back in school. Last year at this time we were just beginning to explore the farms and though now they are so familiar to us, it still feels like we're on borrowed time. Each day I appreciate our surroundings, I realize how temporary it is and how three years (and now two) will go by so quickly. There is so much to do and yet impossible to do it all. I feel like we've done so much and yet nothing at all.
"This 2011 Chardonnay will be noteworthy since a Siberian has worked at keeping the ground moles away all summer!"
It took the first half of the year to settle in. Some may be surprised, but living in a different country is not like a vacation. You can't ask an English-speaking bell hop to call a cab for the airport or fix the heater. It's the little things that took so long to adjust to: reading the labels on the food, buying gas, getting your hair cut, returning items at a store, calling for service for the boiler, getting your hair cut, asking the gardener to trim the hedges, getting your hair cut, trying to make it through a yoga class without looking at other students for a clue, getting your hair cut, parking garages, getting your hair cut. I never realized how language can make you feel so close or so distant from people. And how important it is to getting your hair cut. I'm so thankful to those who speak English in times when it's really important, at the doctor's office or the vet. Our gardener speaks 3 or 4 languages, none of them English. But we get by. But my coiffure? Well, the language barrier always makes that a special adventure for me!
"Work, work, work! A Sibe's mole-hunting work is never done."
The farms we walk are tranquil and yet alive. In the late mornings and mid day, they are deserted, occasionally we pass only the working farmers. In the late afternoon, the adjacent sports field is filled with action and the walking paths are busy with joggers, cyclists, horseback riders and dog walkers. But even at that time, we'll be lucky to pass just 2 or 3 people on our chosen path. With miles and miles of vines, corn and sunflowers crops and open views of all the plots, it's easy to choose your own path to avoid horseback riders or choose the path with known dog pals for a hello. Our walks are never the same. And it's a great area to let the dogs roam off lead to stretch their legs and chase moles and birds. Between Juno's talent for catching moles and Loki's talent for driving off crows, the crops are safe from predators, at least while we're there.
"Princess, do you think we should put a resume together for our farm care services?"
"Resume, sch-mesume. Big Boy, our reputations precede us."
It's funny, I get the feeling that Juno, being true to her breed and the adventurous-seeking husky that she is, loves being here in Switzerland. But Loki? Something tells me he senses the impermanence of it all and is constantly wondering when we'll go home. The one he knows as his. He's adjusted to living here and has even adjusted to staying at Bernard's when we vacation. And like us, he's learning to appreciate the new experiences with peace and a sense of adventure. A small part of me can't wait for the day we drive down our driveway in California with him. But for now, we'll continue to appreciate our adventurous, yet tranquil life here, because I know that day will come far too soon.
Oh yes I understand the "getting your haircut" amongst all the other stuff. I went 2 years once with out getting it done ha ha. Tried it once, had a disaster, never went again ha ha. Just get it done when I go back to the UK now 🙂
Amazing how time flies, my 5 year marker in Spain just passed by too. I wonder if you will get wonderlust when you eventually get back home. Its so nice to see how settled both Juno and Loki have become. I look forward to the next 2 years of you being our European neighbour. Heck and if all goes to plan might even be in your neck of the woods next summer even if it just passing through the airport on our way climbing in Chamonix 🙂
Congratulations on your first year passing.
We don't know how you will be able to leave that beautiful place, although we suppose there really is no place like home. We have so enjoyed following along with so many of your adventures. We hope you finally found that perfect stylist:)
Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning
And when you get back to the States, you'll never see things in the same light again. In fact, you may very well find yourself suggesting another stint abroad. My parents never settled back down in the States; yeah they've 'retired' to North Carolina, but my Dad told me just last week if he could return to Saudi Arabia (albeit the Saudi Arabia of 20 years ago) he would. And one of his best friends lives in Cyprus - they visit them every year, and every trip I wonder if my parents will just stay there. There is no place like home, but I've learned that home can be anywhere. Just saying. Of course, I'm feeling extremely nostalgic today (or maybe it's just my allergies....), but once you've figured out which tube is toothpaste and which tube is hemorrhoid cream, you've pretty much conquered the important stuff. (And haircuts? Eh, you were probably stuck in a rut anyway! 😉 )
-Dr. Liz (who longs for the gardens of Cordoba... And I'll send you a gift of your choosing if you can give me the movie reference for that quote! It's easy if you think about me and my history... *grin*)
Has it been a year already?! Time surely does fly when you're having fun!
I was wondering when you were going to get your hair cut! 🙂
our "jardinier" speaks Portuguese, Spanish, German, Italian, and French.
Sometimes it takes several blinks to believe what you are seeing. Happy one year anniversary.
Dont worry Loki, PetsMart, Starbucks, McDonalds, Taco Bell, WalMart, Traffic, et all will still be here when you get back. Enjoy where you are while you can.
Remy and Flash
Oh wow! I can't believe it's been a year already. Sheesh time is going by way too quickly. I'm glad you're having so much fun there. I hope the next two are even more fun since you've adjusted and hopefully the language barrier isn't such a problem lol. I've enjoyed spending the last year reading along. Sorry I haven't been commenting much. 🙂
First of all, Dr. Liz, Lawrence of Arabia is too easy. We will be checking our mailbox.
Secondly, has it really been a year? Amazing how time flies.
So how does your hair look anyway?
Hee hee mango momma read my mind. I remember you were sporting a nice 80's doo. I can't believe it's been a year too. Wow. Momma keeps up w/ your posts but she is super bad at commenting on bloggies and she thinks it's been an incredible year for woos. Oh happy belated birthday Miss Juno! U age like fine wine!!!
You are most wise to enjoy your time in CH while you're there. Carpe diem and all that. Time enough to enjoy CA when you're back there. Our staff has been falling down on the job recently and we're way behind in our blog reading, so we have to go back and check to see how the Turkey trip went. Looks like Juno & Loki survived Camp Bernard with no problems.
Jed & Abby
Juno is a bit of a bon vivant by nature (of course), perhaps living abroad will turn Loki into more of a "homme du monde", or "chien du monde" to be more exact.
Enjoy your days there, unless it falls into the ocean sooner than expected, CA will still be here when you return. If not, well, c'est la vie. Ha-roo roo roo!
What a wonderful, if somewhat lonely year. So glad Juno has discovered her talent for mole hunting, and Loki, his "inner shepherd". I sure have enjoyed your adventures. Thank you for taking us along!