I looked like the total American trying to walk into a Coop Supermarket on Thursday evening at 5:30 p.m. Nothing was open. I should have known better. It was Holy Thursday. Switzerland basically shuts almost down everything from Thursday night to Tuesday morning. So if you're out of milk, you almost have to suffer for 4 full days. Unless you go to gas station mini market. Then you have to buy the cheap milk, with all the fat and lactose in it. So you don't have to really suffer that much if you don't want to.
Mr. Wild Dingo was like "Holy Thursday? What's that?" He didn't suffer through years of religious education, like me. I'll never forget my first (U.S.) employer laughing when I mentioned having Easter Monday off. It's not like I really understood why Christians took that day off. In fact, I'm pretty sure I thought a free work day was the reward for 40 days of suffering. Double kudos for the free day being a Monday. So much for all that religious education.
Every year in college I'd give up cursing for Lent. As if. You can tell I totally grasped the meaning of suffering.
We took advantage of the gorgeous day and spent Good Friday in Morges, tulip-gazing and ice cream-eating with the rest of the Swiss who had nothing else to do. Feeling a bit of nostalgia for the Lent I no longer practice, I went for only one scoop of ice cream, shared with Loki, instead of two. That should count for some suffering, right?
And here I am, twenty years later, still creatively looking for ways to avoid suffering.