Category Archives: Geneva Stories

Back with Julie

One week after landing in a hazy, overcast, gray Geneva, Switzerland, I had my very first taste of what I’d moved 3,000 miles to experience.  And it was, of course, magical.

I was alone for the first time in weeks.  Exploring.  John was working, Jacob was safely at his first day of school.  I was on my own, with only our Bernese Mountain Dog, Charlie, for company when it happened.

I was driving down the Route de Divonne when the clouds, at long last, parted.  And there they were – just past the now glistening Lake Geneva — the mountains.  The Alps!  Mont Blanc, with its year-round snowy peak, the highest mountain in Europe. The Alps danced right there — just through my windshield.  I could practically reach out and touch them, taste them, smell their beauty.  It was magical.  Breathtaking.  Inspiring.  Unforgettable.

Google Photo

Google Photo

I felt like Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music.  You know just what I mean, don’t you.  I felt like Julie when she is up there in the mountains all by herself.  When she throws her arms wide and sings with all her heart, The Hills Are Alive, With the Sound of Music.  And they are.  Trust me.  They are.

I slowed down, tried to breathe, tried to memorize the moment and keep it in my heart. Tried to capture the moment forever.  I also tried not to hit another car.

And then, well, something else happened.  From a side street to my left came a small car.  It turned in front of me, pulling behind it a long green open-air trailer.  Neatly stenciled on the back in a lacy, delicate script were these words:

jardin naturel

“Natural Garden,” in French.

On top of that trailer sat the largest pile of steaming cow manure I have ever seen.

Yes, my first solo excursion in the Swiss countryside became a metaphor for life as an ex-patriot living there:  There were moments of majestic beauty that I call “Julie Andrews Moments,” when I was filled with beauty and awe.  When I honestly felt like the luckiest person on earth.

And there was a lot of shit.  These two elements combined with travel to places I never dreamed I’d see, made our time in Geneva the adventure of a lifetime.

 

*     *     *

My bloggin’ buddy, Naomi, a wonderful traveler who actually posts her own pictures and does not cut them from Google, wrote this post about a trip to Switzerland.  Naoimi inspired me to re-post this old, old post.  I wrote it back in the days when you didn’t know me.  When you didn’t realize that some way, somehow, shit is always a metaphor for my life.

And if you ever get the chance to go to Switzerland, do it.  Do not pass GO, do not collect $200 — it’s not worth all that much over there!

Google Photo

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Bloggin' Buddies, Driving, Family, Geneva Stories, Huh?, Humor

Boaring Followup

When I wrote my story about Cooper and the wild boar he tried to befriend, well, I did it as a way to make my peace with my furry friend’s passing.

And as frequently happens when I write about things that hurt my heart, my blogging buddies have all helped me through what has been a sad few days.  Thanks.  It has made a difference.

Karen, from Mom in the Muddle commented that she’d never known anyone with a wild boar story  And it occurred to me that I have several.

So I thought I’d tap that keg one more time, and tell you my other wild boar stories.

Spoiler Alert:  Nobody dies.  You’re welcome.

Boaring-story #1

Linda was an English angel.  We met when she came to my door about six months after we moved to Switzerland.  By that point, I was incredibly lonely – my French was, ummm, sucky, and I knew very few people.

Then Linda knocked on my door. She spoke English.  And she was moving in down the street with her husband and two, count ‘em two kids – a girl Jacob’s age (Catherine) and a boy (James) a year younger.  Friends for my son!  Did I mention that she was English.  And that she spoke English?

While Linda was visiting that first afternoon, John called. I told him that we had a new neighbor who spoke English and that I wasn’t going to let her leave.  I said this in front of Linda.  Somehow, she didn’t take me to be some sort of psychopath and became my friend in spite of what must have seemed like a creepy thing to say.

Anyway, one evening after Cooper and I had our encounter,  Linda was driving down the busy road that was next to our house.  Linda drove a large, green Mitsubishi Montero, and that night she struck a fully grown, male wild boar.  Only a car that size could have won such a jousting match.  Linda was unhurt, and she called the local police, the gendarme, to report it.  The men in uniform came rushing.

Now what do you think was their first question?  Did they ask if she was hurt?  If her car was alright?  If she was traumatized by hitting and killing a beast that weighed as much as a truck?

No.  Wrong on all counts.

“Madam, do yu vant it?” they said in heavily French-accented English.  “Ze sanglier?  Ze body?  Ze boar?” 

You see, the meat from wild boar is a much sought after delicacy in Switzerland and France.  Linda was unaware of that fact.

Linda straightened her British backbone, stiffened her British upper lip and said in her most refined British accent:

“Why No.”

Image from gourmetfly.com

Image from gourmetfly.com

Linda’s boar was given to a local bistro in the next town.  The served sanglier à la chaise for the rest of the season.

Google, natch

Google, natch

I didn’t try it out of respect for Cooper’s pal, the boar who didn’t kill us.  It only seemed fair.

*   *   *

Boaring story #2

In mid-2000 we moved a short ways away, across the border into France.  There we had a lovely house, but the dog walks were less spectacular.

Still, every night after Jacob went to bed, John or I would take Coops for a walk.  We took turns, because Jacob was still too young to leave alone.  We were still surrounded by farm fields, but the views and the walks now along town streets that meandered alongside of farm fields, instead of farm roads that criss-crossed them.  These roads were built for cars, and darn it all, people used them to drive on!

John insisted on taking a flashlight whenever he went for a walk at night.  I thought he was a pansy.  I mean, really, there were streetlights here and there, plus your eyes adjust to the darkness and I for one could see just fine in the dark, thank you very much.  I was not a pansy; I didn’t carry a flashlight.

And you know, that was probably just as well, because one night while Cooper and I were out, we walked down a road that was busy enough to require me to leash Coops.  And it was a good thing.  Because as we came around a curve I noticed something silhouetted in the streetlight 30 feet ahead of us – a full grown, tusked, wild boar.

Thanks, Google But our boar's tusks were way bigger

Thanks, Google
But our boar’s tusks were way bigger

Male wild boars have tusks that protrude from their lower jaw.  They use these tusks to skewer dogs and people who displease them.

Cooper and I stood very still and watched him.  The streetlight glistened on his tusks which were quite large.  I figured they would easily go through either Cooper or I.  Maybe both.

Unless we died from the stench.  Wild boars seem to have an aversion to water.  And soap.

After about 10 minutes that seemed a whole lot longer, Pumba moved on into the farm field on the other side of the road.  There was a dip of about two feet between the road and the field, and Pumba negotiated it easily.

Phew!  Another boaring averted.

*   *   *

Boaring-story #3

Naturally, I started to become a wee bit nervous.  Paranoid.  Fearful of large mammals that might kill me and my dog.

I was pretty sure I wouldn’t do anything stupid around a wild animal.  I respected them.  I admired their strength.  Their wildness.  Their ability to kill me if I ticked them off.  So I knew that I was safe.

Cooper? There was not even the slightest chance that he would be sensible. So during the fall, when the wild boar were known to be around, I kept him on the leash in the evenings.  I was learning.

I did decide that maybe my husband John wasn’t such a pansy after all.  Perhaps, I thought, just perhaps, a flashlight wasn’t such a stupid idea.  It could let me see what was going to attack me, although sometimes I think you’re better off not knowing what’s gonna hit you.  Still, maybe having a flashlight would give me a blunt instrument with which to defend myself.   I looked at the six-inch plastic flashlight in my hand and realized that I was totally screwed in the weapons department.

One night, not long after Cooper and I had seen Pumba basking in the streetlamp, that we had another sighting.  I was starting to worry that my luck just couldn’t continue.  Time was running out.  How many times can you be in close contact with a wild boar without getting boared?

It was getting on towards December.  There was a distinct chill in the air.  The leaves were off the trees, the shrubs were bare .  The moon was full that night, and so I left the flashlight at home.  I could see just fine in the bright light that needed no batteries.  Of course, just when I needed the moon, it chose to disappear.  And that is when I looked to my left and saw the dim outline of yet another wild boar.   And this one was even bigger.

This wildlife crap was beginning to get on my nerves.

“SHIT!!!!” I thought.  “What is with these pigs?  Do I have a ‘Gore me’ sign on my back?  Or one that says ‘Secretly wants to be Boared?’ ” 

Does Mother Nature truly have a warped sense of humor?

In the dim light, I could just see the animal slowly walking, straight towards me and Cooper.  We slowly backed away, but it kept coming.  Slowly and steadily it lumbered our way, prolonging my fear.  Why not kill me and get it over with?

I swear, this animal was even bigger than the last boar we’d seen.  From its size and shape, I figured it was possibly the largest wild boar on earth.

And then, just when it was at the edge of the field, about 20 feet away from frozen me and squirming Cooper, something surprising happened.

The wild boar mooed

 

There was a whole mess of them Google Image

There was a whole mess of these scary critters
Google Image

The farmer had apparently just moved his herd of cows to that field the other boar had crossed.  It had previously been empty.  The moon came back out and shined down on me, as I laughed uproariously.  Cooper looked confused but he wagged his tail and tugged on his leash.  He wanted to play with the cows.  Of course, they don’t much like dogs, either.

*    *    *

Cooper and I never again met a wild boar.  And you know what?  That suits me just fine.  Because dealing with one sanglier was memorable.  A whole herd of them was just getting boaring

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Filed under Awards, Cooper, Dogs, Family, Geneva Stories, Humor, Pets, Stupidity, Wild Beasts

Letting Go

It promised to be a glorious day, and magically, I woke up early.  I snuck out of bed without waking John, grabbed some clothes and went quietly to the living room.  I opened the shutters and looked out to see the slightest bits of pink light starting to color the sky outside.  Dawn was just breaking, and it looked to be a beautiful start.

“Wanna take a walk?” I asked Cooper, my year-and-a-half old Springer Spaniel.

Cooper wagged his tail, and headed towards the door.  We grabbed his leash, my red jacket, and headed out into the morning.

And the morning was glorious.  A November morning.  Indian Summer, if there can be Indian Summer in Switzerland where there never were too many Indians.

We lived in the midst of dog and dog-lovers’ heaven.  Our tiny house was located on the outskirts of a small village 20 minutes outside of Geneva, Switzerland in farm country.  Our chalet looked just like a cuckoo-clock, and it stood as the last clock on a rural lane in what looked like a display of seven cuckoo-clock houses.  Across the dirt road from the clocks were farm fields.  The fields crossed the road to the left of our house and went on and on.  Wheat, corn, hay, sunflowers, rape seed.  The fields sloped gently down and gave way to vineyards and apple orchards until the hills gently ended at the town of Nyon and Lake Geneva.  The Alps, with Mont Blanc, the highest peak in the Alps, rose above the Lake and the other mountains, as if placing its arms around the gang of mountains it hung out with.

Not a bad location

Not a bad view*
(I’m pretty sure this is one of my pictures.)

Magestic.  Magical.  Make-your-heart-sing-like-Julie-Andrews-beautiful.

It was about 5:30 when Cooper and I headed out.  We crossed the busy road that ran to the left of our house, and I let him off the leash.  It was getting lighter, and I walked and watched my dog run, both of us smiling.  He’d run a bit, then come back to check on me and run off once again.

Springer Spaniels are expressive dogs – their sad looks can melt your heart.  But when they run, they embody joy.  Pure and simple joy.   And on that morning, Cooper ran with abandon through harvested corn fields that we passed first.  His ears flapped and happiness spread across his face as he ran and jumped over cornstalks and literally ran circles around me in his delight.

We continued on the straight farm road that paralleled the Lake, passed fallow fields to where the road turned at a right angle and led us downhill towards the lake.  By now, it was lighter — I could just start to make out Nyon Castle in the distance, although it was so far away that if you didn’t know it was there, you really couldn’t see it.   The road crossed another farm road, and so we turned to the right again to continue on our normal loop that would lead us home, after a walk of about 2-1/2 miles.  It was full morning, now; the sun glistened on Lake Geneva, the snow topped peaks and me and Cooper.

Up ahead on the left and right were fields of grass that would soon be harvested for hay.  Cooper ran ahead and disappeared into the tall grass.  I watched as the grass parted, showing me just where he was and how far he’d run.

But then I noticed a second line where the grass was parting for somebody else.  Or something  else.  Whatever it was, it was heading straight towards Cooper.

Possibly the best way to describe Cooper would be as a fur-covered marshmallow.  Everything inside — good and sugary.   As a soft, squishy, completely sweet thing, Cooper didn’t  understand aggression.  Somehow it all worked out though – aggressive dogs never attacked or bothered him.  Cooper wanted to play, and his playfulness was infectious.  Even the most aggressive dogs found him endearingly stupid; and they always played with the sweet dope.

Still, when frightened, Cooper became a complete coward.  If something frightened him, well, Cooper would run to me and hide behind my legs.  Or behind John’s legs or later, behind  Jacob’s.  An all-inclusive coward, he’d hide behind us one and all.

So when the two paths in the grass converged, I wasn’t surprised at all to see Cooper come springing out, his face the picture of delight.  He had a new friend, and was running towards me to share the good news.

There are some friends you just shouldn’t introduce to your mother.  This was one.

Cooper had met a wild boar.  An enormous, wild f’ing boar.

Google Image

Google Image

She came out of the grass, and stopped in the middle of the road and stood there, all 250 pounds of her.  She strutted her impressive bulk and looked from side to side.

I stood there, frozen, my mouth agape.  I watched her breathe, knowing that I was unlikely to remember this meeting fondly.

I could see the sun touch the edges of her coarse, bristled fur where it was lighter than the part that came out of her back or side or anywhere else on her 250 pounds or so of solid flesh.

I could hear her breathing from about 75 feet away, as I backed up slowly.  She breathed in and out, sometimes through her snout, and sometimes in wet breaths through her lips, which flapped occasionally.  She breathed loudly.

I could smell her.  She needed a bath.  Or a run through a field of lavender, preferably in France.

SHIT!

We had been warned about wild boar, but in spite of long twice daily walks through the fields, we had never seen hide nor hair nor bristle; we didn’t worry.  Cooper was delighted with his new friend.  And he rushed over towards me to tell me so.  I wasn’t so easily smitten.

Wild boars do not like dogs, they are known to attack and kill them.  They aren’t fond of people, either.  And rumor has it they aren’t terribly playful.  And I wasn’t anxious to turn my lovely morning walk into a learning experience, either.

I looked over in the direction of the house and suddenly realized something extremely important:

It’s a long crawl home.

“Cooper, Come!”  I shouted, stupidly, automatically.

In fact, I was not sure I really wanted him to come to me.  Would I take on a wild boar to save my dog?  Not if I thought about it logically.  But then logic really has very little room in the brain of a dog-lover.  Of course I would have taken on a wild boar to save my younger, dumb son.  And of course, I would have lost.  Especially since, in looking about, I realized that we were in the middle of a farm field and there wasn’t so much as a protective twig in sight.  Damn the compulsively tidy Swiss.

I did not want to be wild boared.

Cooper, oblivious to the danger he was dancing around, he kept going up to the boar, prancing in front of her, running in circles around her, begging her to chase him, just like his doggy pals did.

“Come on, play!” he was obviously saying.

“Go away,” she was clearly thinking as she aimed a cold, bored glare at him.

I was pretty sure that if she chased him, it wouldn’t be to play.  And then naturally, Cooper would panic, not know what to do.  Oh who am I kidding – Cooper’s first and only though would be “MOM!”  and he would run and hide behind me.  And the boar would kill me, an innocent bystander.

I looked at my red jacket, glad I had worn that one so that they could find my crumpled, maimed, boar-ed body more easily.

“Dammit, Cooper, Come!  Now!” I said more softly, trying to get him to leave her alone.

Nobody ever listens to me.

Cooper ran away from the boar towards me at last, but then he turned and ran back to her, again, circled around wagging his tail furiously, still trying to get her to play.

But suddenly, the situation changed.  “Cooper, Come.  Now!” I screamed it this time.

Because the boar had turned her head.  She was now looking at me.

Naturally, Cooper ran around her again and fortunately she forgot about me in her irritation at the stupid dog.  The boar, who seemed to have finally caught her breath, looked at Cooper like he was her pesky little brother.  She shook her head once more, dismissive of the pest, and continued on her way uphill through the grass field.  The grass separated as she pushed her way through.

Cooper came back to me, defeated, deflated, rejected.  He looked sad in that tearful, long-eared way only a Springer spaniel can have.  My boy’s feelings had been hurt.  I was glad it had only been his feelings.

*    *    *

Cooper loved those fields, where he could cavort in relative safety, where he could run free, with his ears flapping.  Doggy Heaven.  Of course, it really didn’t matter where he was, Cooper was happy wherever he was, as long as John, Jacob and I were there with him.

Today, that’s where Cooper is  —  in doggy heaven.  I am sure that he is back in the fields near Gingins, Switzerland.  Running with unrestrained joy, looking out over Lake Geneva and Mont Blanc and the Alps.   He’ll have his young dog body back, with no aches, pains or problems.

I hope he doesn’t run into any wild boars, though.  Because it’ll be a while before John, Jacob or I will join him.  For a while, there’ll be nobody for Coops to hide behind.

The Boys in the Jungfrau Region of Switzerland

The Boys in the Jungfrau Region of Switzerland

Cooper

March 9, 1998 – August 13, 2013

*   *   *

To vote for this story in BlogHer, please go to:  http://www.blogher.com/node/1393485/voty?category=VOTY%20-%20Heart%3A%20Feel%20it.  Thanks!

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Filed under Cooper, Dogs, Freshly Pressed, Geneva Stories, History, Humor, Pets, Wild Beasts

OneOhFive and Counting

Using the telephone when you live in a country where you don’t speak the language is daunting.  You know each time that you’re going to look like an idiot.  You can’t resort to the pointing and grunting to make yourself understood that you do in person.  Instead, you’re left sounding like a moron; it’s inevitable.

Normally for me looking like a dork is not a problem.  Since that’s how I look frequently, I make the best of it.  I even enjoy it more often than not.  And those experiences often become my funniest stories.

But when you make an idiot out of yourself because you can’t communicate, it’s different.  If you can’t laugh with the person who witnessed it, well, it takes the fun out of it.  All you’re left with is feeling like a lonely idiot.

Knowing that humiliation would follow, each and every time I picked up the phone in when we lived in French-speaking Switzerland, my heart dropped to the bottom of my stomach while my pulse rate and blood pressure soared.  I was on my way to the Idiot Zone.

And that’s just how I felt when I picked up the phone to call dog breeders. We’d opted for a pure bred puppy because we had a little kid (Jacob was 6) and because my husband is a lawyer and thinks that he can research things and know what he’s getting into.  Yeah right.

Anyway, in early 1998 we needed a puppy.  I needed a puppy.  My son needed to grow up with a dog since he had no siblings and needed someone to talk to.  John got to choose the breed:  An English Springer Spaniel.

That morning as always, I looked at the phone with trepidation.   Shit, I thought.  I picked it up and dialed.

Bonjour.  Je m’appelle Elyse.  Vendez-vous les chiots?”  Hi.  My name is Elyse.  Do you sell puppies?  [Yes, I’m quite the French conversationalist.  In English you can’t shut me up.]

“Would you like to speak English?” said the woman on the other end of the line.

“Yes!!!!” I said with tears of relief/delight/I-don’t-have-to-sound-like-a-dope coming to my eyes.  I couldn’t believe my luck.  All I could think of was just how lucky I was to not have to try to negotiate in French.  Or German.  Or Italian.  Or Romanch.  Instead, on the other end of the phone was someone who spoke English!  A woman who could understand me and respond.  A woman with puppies!

“Very good.  I can speak English.  And I have puppies.  Can you visit them tomorrow?”

“Yes!”

A plan was set.  We got directions and headed out the next morning to pick out a puppy!

All the puppies were in a room with some cushions and blankets on the floor.  The three of us made ourselves comfortable and started cuddling puppies.

Jacob picked up the puppy closest to him and put it in his lap the way Madame Carasco, the breeder, showed him, as the puppies were still quite young.  But another puppy waddled over to Jacob, pushed the first puppy off of Jacob’s lap and settled himself down for the long haul with my 7 year old son.  It was the only smart thing that dog has ever done.

“Look!  He loves me Mom!”

“He Loves Me, Mom!”

And then I asked the price.

Cooper is descended from a line of top show dogs that have been winning Swiss and other European competitions for generations, going back to Roman times, I’m pretty sure.  Cooper couldda been a contender.  But I’m not that kind of a girl (and we’re not that kind of a family).  His perfect physique, beautiful coloring and his full (not cut off) tail “showed” only to friends and family.  And he’s never whined once about lost glory.  What a guy!

But he loves me, Mom!

Today is Cooper’s 105th Birthday,  his 15th in human years.  He’s an old man now, a puppy no longer.  His joints are stiff, he can’t walk upstairs by himself these days, and is so blind that he only realizes we have entered or left a room by sniffing the air.

Cooper 3-9-13

You know, in hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t ask the price on the phone.  Because Cooper has been well worth every centime.

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Filed under Conspicuous consumption, Cooper, Dogs, Family, Geneva Stories, Humor, Mental Health, Pets

Shattered Belief

The following is a story that I submitted to The Green Study’s funny Christmas Story contest.  I found out about it through C4C, Company For Christmas, when Michelle of The Green Study and I met.  And I won 2nd Prize!  See Michelle’s post here for the other winners.

Thanks, Michelle for hosting the contest and for being part of C4C!

*     *     *

Jacob was 8 years old, and still believed in Santa with all his heart.  No matter how many of his friends showed him just why Santa couldn’t possibly be real, Jacob found it in his heart to believe.

It was getting awkward.  He was 8, and big for his age.  Nobody else in his class still believed.

It was 1999, and my husband, John, our 8 year old son Jacob and I were living in Geneva, Switzerland, where English language books were extremely expensive.  So naturally, in early December, Jacob’s teacher announced that the entire class needed to get a particular and particularly expensive dictionary by the beginning of 2000 for home use.  Locally it was tres cher.  But we found it for a reasonable price on Amazon.co.uk.  Being good parents, we ordered it.

It arrived two days before Christmas.  And on Christmas Eve, I wrapped it up.

“I’ll take the hit for this one,” I told my husband, knowing that Jacob would not appreciate getting a dictionary for Christmas.

“Nah,” said John.  “Mark it from Santa.”

I didn’t think much about it, but I followed John’s suggestion.  Santa had another gift for Jacob.

When Christmas morning arrived, Jacob got great gifts from Santa:  an electric car race track, skiis and one more present.

Feels like a book,” Jacob said, eagerly opening it.  And then he looked at the cover.

“There’s no such thing as Santa.”  Jacob cried.  “Santa would never have given me a dictionary.”

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Filed under Bloggin' Buddies, Childhood Traumas, Family, Geneva Stories, Humor

The Well

Today I am hanging out over at Le Clown’s — at his serious site, Black Box Warnings.  Come on over.

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Filed under Family, Geneva Stories, Health and Medicine, Mental Health

French is Dangerous

You’ve heard me talk about this before (Merde 101).  But the world has gotten more dangerous since I wrote that piece.  We need to be on the lookout.  We need to be vigilant.  We need to speak English.  No, this is not an anti-immigrant piece.  This is a potential-worldwide-calamity-caused-by-incomprehensible-grammar piece.

Yes, it’s true.  I’m saying that all roads to terrorism are sign-posted in FRENCH.  Believe me.  I lived there.  I know.  Well, I don’t know the language, but I know those signposts.  And what they say.  More or less.

Why would I make such an accusation?  Because French is stupid.

Well, actually, it’s really French possessives.  French possessives are stupid, illogical, dangerous.

You see, in French, objects get the gender of the object/noun, not the owner.  And that, is of course, the problem.

Imagine that there is a man and a woman in a train station.  Between them is a suitcase.

Google Image (or KGB?)

In it is a nuclear bomb.  Desperate to foil the bad guys, you cannot just shout out “It’s HIS!” pointing to the man who can be arrested and the bomb diffused.

Google Images are everywhere

Why not?

Because the word for suitcase in French is “valise” which is feminine.  Therefore, you can only say “It’s HERS” (“Est la valise!”) — regardless of who owns the suitcase/nuclear bomb.  The bomb would go off and everyone would die.

The terrorists would succeed because French is stupid.

Not speaking French is the way to protect the world.

*****

One of my blogging buddies, Paprika of Good Humored felt stupid recently.  She wrote about it here:  At Least We Can See France From Our Toilet.  And it’s not her fault.  You see, Paprika and her husband Oregano found themselves in French-speaking Switzerland, just down the road from where I used to live.  They came back feeling stupid.  They shouldn’t have.  Instead, they should have come back relieved that they had survived a nuclear attack.

[Note to folks who actually know French:  Before you get on my case, I do know that there are other was to say “It’s HIS.” But they are not short, sweet and to the point.  They are long and involved and the bomb would explode by the time anyone could get the sentence out.  The Terrorists would still win.]

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Filed under Criminal Activity, Geneva Stories, Gizmos, Global Warming, Health and Medicine, History, Humor, Hypocrisy, Neighbors, Politics, Science, Stupidity