Monday, 19 December 2011

Rückblick, looking back on 2011

 India won the "World cup Cricket" tournament after 1983 and this time the "Master Blaster" Sachin tendulkar was also there. What a win !

The world lost the most amazing and talented visionary "Steve Jobs". Salute to him and his visions which you can see in almost every hand today.                            
Amy Winehouse Dead! We all saw this on newspapers and TV channels. What a waste of talent at such a young age. I think its not easy to handle too much success unless you are mentally and spiritually very strong. Spiritually I say because here I am speaking on the basis of the Indian Scripture "Geeta" . Now its more than difficult for me to sum up Geeta, but what I can say from my thinking, which I try and fail to follow most of the time myself is ONE SHOULD BELIEVE IN DOING (Karma) (and for me the modern version which I love is "NIKE" just do it) and not in the results and try and be detached from happiness or sorrow, because if we bring ourselves to this level the success and failure does not affect to us or matter to us so much. This is only Maya or an illusion and illusion does not stay for ever. Now I don't know if I am making much sense here, I am not an expert here but I think and I know that these sayings works for me. I think for human being to be able to live life normally its very important that you have some issues or some goals(Work/ Karma) in your life which you crave and work hard to fulfil. I think that's what keeps you going and keeps you focused and grounded. If you have all the wealth in the world and you are not a philanthropist  like Warren Buffet, or Bill Gates or "Roger Federer", you are most likely to screw up your life. I think if you are a normal working human being you are the most blessed person on the face of the earth. You can experience normal life with some challenges. That`s just my take on things and it works for me.

Some other famous personalities also left the earth this year. Hollywood icon  Elizabeth Taylor. Indian film legend "Dev Anand" who had given us so many beautiful movies over the spam of about 6 decades.

Prince William and Kate got married! What a beautiful day that was !   

Some other things also happened in the world like Euro crisis especially in Greece. Osama bin laden and Quaddifi got killed. The Bachchan family was blessed with a baby girl.

   Lord Krishna talking to Arjuna.

 I am not the type to make resolutions because I know I will not stick to them. But I surely looked back to see how the year 2011 went so far. Most of it I must say was "Normal" which I love, because now-a-days its hard to find anything "Normal" and I like NORMAL. So it was a good year. I did some small achievements of my own in my own little way, but sure I think I could have done some more. Some not so good things also happened, like misunderstandings with friends which I really regret. I did try to fix it, but the doors had already closed. Then I say it was not meant to be and move on. It was difficult to let go of a good friend but these things happen in life. I suffered for some time, try to make peace with it, put my mind to work which was great and wait for new things to come to my life. I thought its not going to bring anything to cry over spilled milk, that's what I tell my girls and this time it was my turn to follow it, MIND you its very hard. I think kids do so much better than us "Adults".

Time to welcome the new year with open arms and gratitude and wait and hope and work hard to make the most of every single day of 2012 worthwhile. On the personal front I could really do with some more patience, eat a little less Chocolate, but no resolution, just trying. I wish all of you a great start in the new year and the year filled with hope, success and good health. God bless ! WOW!! it already suits! 2012. WELCOME!!!!



Saturday, 17 December 2011

"Christmas Christmas" everywhere!

I love this time of the year in Europe. Snow, winter, cookies, lights, glue wine, gifts etc. etc. Most of the towns has colorful Christmas markets where in you can see beautiufl things, great atmosphere and families hanging out together. We went to one in Rapperswil with a dear friend and had a great time eating Racellete and drinking glue wine and Spizt Bübe.

Have a look at some of the stuff:

A beautiful blend of Modern and Medievel work.

The old town.

Fenster decoration!

                                                                     Angels !!!


The view of the old town from the Piazza

A typical old Swiss house.

A rainbow from my balcony !

"The singing Christmas Tree", look closely these are kids singing. This singing tree is one of the famous attractions in downtown Zürich.

Winter !

Such a beautiufl Angel!

And ja, we got to see a "Fig Tree" loaded with frish figs, and No I did not steal to try one :(

Mother Mary !

Christmas Jingles !

Voodoo Dolls !

A very interesting Chair !

Zürich Bahnofstrasse full of lights!

Wish you all a very "Merry Christmas" and happy holidays !

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Another Fairytale Wedding!

Another fairytale wedding happned in the tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan when the King Jigme Khesar Nagyel Wangchuck married a commoner Jetsun Pema according to the Bhuddist ceremony. To be very honest what got my attention to this news was that the King again marrying a "Commoner" like Prince William married "Kate". It just feels so good to see these things happening now-a-days. Another thing which I found touching was that the couple walked for about 71 kms on foot from Punka to Timpu because hundreds of thousands of people were standing on the streets to greet to couple. What a way to acknowledge the crowd, what humbelness!!!


And last but not the least the attire of the couple, from head to toe. I found so beautiful with breathtaking colors and both looking so much in love and happy. God bless !!!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Steve Jobs !

         Truly a visionary and an inspiration........

May his sould RIP. What to write and how to describe this man "Steve Jobs". What he has given to this world which is special, unthinkable, out of the box, amazing and so many more adjectives I can use. I was never a big fan of techonology but when I saw my daughter`s very sleek "Apple" I-pod. It felt great in the hand. The logo was so simple, yet so impressive, so perfect. The feel of the gadjet was as smooth as butter and so sleek. I loved it and then we got a Mac for her. What a delight it was for her as it was for me. What quality!! I am also getting a hang to work on the MAC.

I remember when I was small and used to read magic stories. Once I remember reading that there was this magician who had this big ring on his finger and from sitting at one place he could see and hear what is happeing in the other places. I must be about 8 or 10 yeard old. And I thought, WOW!! what if this could be true. We could see sitting in one place what is happening in other places. And when this thing we can do could be amazing. For me this little I-phone is the sort of replica like this magicians ring, where in we can see whats happening in other places or around the world. What a gadget!  I think we cannot thank Jobs enough for his great work he did for this world. Have a look at his speech. Truly inspiring and I am sure he will be  for many many more decades to come.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Switzerland through Indian eyes !

Guess what I bumped into, YES!!! a video on Switzerland and how Indians percieve this country through Indian eyes. Have a look.

A Slice of Switzerland for you!

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Happy Birthday to me!

Yes On Sunday I turned one year wiser or older as one can say(actually I dont feel differently). I love birthday's and not only mine everyone's. I try and wish a person on his birthday if I can, earlier it was a simple card and now with mails and networking sites its so much easier to do so. As the time of my birthday comes closer I start feeling my adrenaline going higher and me just feeling happy. Back then at home it was not a great deal, good food was cooked and you got money as a gift from parents and aunts and little wrapped up gifts from your friends. One thing I always remember I had always worn new clothes. First my mother used to sew for me and then me loving to sew, starting sewing clothes for me quite early. So for many years a day before my birthday, I will be sitting on  my sewing machine and finish the new outfit for the Birthday. Now if I think it was not so necessary but until now I always wear new clothes. My mom and family can second that.

I think "Birthdays" are special. You are choosen to be sent on this earth and I think its a great deal. For me its like celebrating a new LIFE. I think by celebrating my birthday I am respecting my life and acknowledging how beatiful and special life is. Now by celebrating I don't mean to have a big birthday cake, with ballons and pinaiatas. Not that its bad this way. But just feeling so happy and contented that you were born makes it worthwile. I feel when I am happy and enjoying my birth-day I have experiend that the whole world is with me, not in the literal sense but you know what I mean. Enjoy, Respect and love life by celebrating it, because we know we got this one. I like everything about birthdays cakes, wishes, hugs, tears, flowers, sun shine, wrapped up gifts, phone calls, sms`s, messages on your facebook and so on. The best part is when my girls were big enough and they knew what a birthday is and with their little tiny sticky hands they give you a big bear hug, they couldnt even close their arms around me because they were so small but now they are big and getting wished by my girls is the best feeling ever. They baby you, mother you (and OMG!! now I have tears in my eyes) and I love it. Best feeling ever!

So for people who are like me in "celebrating" its good and for people who are not then guys just start celebrating life and start celebrating your "Birthday".



Saturday, 13 August 2011

Raksha Bandhan/Rakhee

For all my Brother`s and Sister`s...................

Raksha Bandhan (रक्षा बंधन ) or Rakhee as its also called is a festival which the brothers and sisters celebrate throughout India, in fact Indians all over the world. We all know about Mother`s Day, Fathers`s Day, Friendship Day and so on but Raksha bhandan is the only festival which I have seen is celebrated to celebrate the bond between a brother and a sister. Raksha meaning protection and bhandan meaning Bond.The sister ties a silk thread (Rakhee) on her brothers wrist and prays for her brothers success and good health. The brother vows to protect the sister from evil and promises to look after her and be there for her. This festival comes mostly in August or according to the Hindu calender in the month of Shravan and falls on the full moon also called as Shravan Poornima.  Its a full family celebration and sweets and good food are served the whole day. The house is decorated, colorful lehariys and beautiful clothes are worn. For the people like me who are not close to home, Rakhees are sent by post and in a little tiny pack the auspicious roli is also sent. I remember as a child I used to go Rakhee shopping with my mother as her brother`s were also not in the same town as us. The post also knows the significane of this festival and I still remember on top of the envolope (Rakhee) was written in BOLD letters. One or two days before the Rakhee a phone call would be exchanged wether the brother recieved the Rakhee or not. My mother also always reminds me to send the Rakhees on time. I make the Rakhees with the girls and they are always happy to recieve non conventional Rakhees from Europe but made with utmost love and care for all my brothers. Today you can find beautiful Rakhees in the shops. Some are made with Silver, stones and even gold. i remember my father always opted for the most simple and the most elegant "Ram Rakhi".

Oh!!this surely makes me home-sick :( but reminising the memories is also giving me utmost pleasure. The main festival is for Brothers and sisters but that does not mean the sister-in-laws, the nephews, the nieces, the cousins and the aunts are left behind. For women there are special Hangy Rakhees which are tied on their beautiful bangles with little gungroos on.

With a little movement of their hand little music comes out of the gunghroos and the jingling of glass bangles. Back there at home a cousin brother or a sister is of equally importance to you as your own brother and sister. So you can imagine how King size the whole day turns out to be. By us it sure did!! A family with 25 people and then when my bua (aunt, father`s sister) will tie a Rakhee to my father and then will come my mother`s turn and then us, and then you can multiply this with 8 buas and so many other ones. I remember we used to have Rakhee`s until our elbows and for the little ones the biggest ones were chosen !!! What fun that was !! 
As a token of love we used to get some money and little gifts or new clothes and then at the end of the day after keeping the Rakhees properly we all kids would go for a nice hindi movie or I may also call a Bollywood one and to end the nice evening an Ice creme at Guddus !!!  
My brother is one of a kind and I am very honoured to have him as my brother. For me he is a Gem of a person, so giving, caring and the uncontitional love he showers upon me, my family and even other people in his life. He is my vorbild and I really look up to him. I wish him all the very best in his life, good luck, good health and great success.

Here are the Rakhees we made at home.

Off to be sent home

I wish all my brothers, sisters and whole family a very happy रक्षा बंधन !!!!

Lots of love and regards

PS: a technical glitche coudn`t let me put rakhee pics here, am working on mana`s mac, still not used to it. will soon go to my little old microsoft and do it. 

Friday, 12 August 2011

Between Cultures!

I have guests at the moment from Home. I feel torn between the "Guest Culture" of  the East and the West (now i dont know if such a thing exist but i certainly observed and experienced this cultural difference) Now back home in the East where I grew up or some place it still is followed or else it is somewhere in the mind of every person "Athiti Devo Bhav:" meaning guest is God so treat them with utmost respect, cook the best for them and give them your best behaviour and so on, but now here in the West when you are trying to do all things on your own without any outside help it becomes a bit difficult to follow this saying or atleast it is for me. But here in the West its more causual, for what I have observed. But when you are sort of running a one man or rather a woman show trying to juggle things between home, a bit of your work and other household chores etc. I feel I am trying to do my best to follow the "Athithi Devo Bhav" principle but feel like failing on certain accounts. The problem for me is that now I know too much and sometimes I think "Ignorance is a real bliss". If you dont know so many things or ways or cultures then you just do what you know and here you know options from so many Cultures but on the other hand your guests dont know (if someone recall I also wrote an articel on emotional behaviour) and so you cannot simply imply certain things on them. But some things become so much ingrained into you over a period of time that unconsiously you just follow them. I am not saying that I would not like to know other cultures. But its just unclear to me sometimes How do you do your best? What is the right thing to do? Where do you find the balance? and then just feel helpless when I dont get these answers. 
I guess I am not making much sense here, but anyways now the guests are gone (this mail have been pending for long, I had a small holiday in Italy followed by a small sickness) and they went very satisfied and contented from here "got this news from my MIL" says something isint'd. So well I guess I could finally figure out the balance between the two Guest culutres. To be very honest let me tell you what I did, what I always do follow my Heart and it always works!!!!!!!!!!
It was fun to cook for them and fish for some compliments :) and we also exchanged some recipes. Two of them I will soon write on the food páge, really simple ones for a warm breakfast or a light lunch. Its called as Upma, made with semolina and served with peanut chutney. I also make upma but theirs was a bit different version. Another Dish was the famours "Gatti ki Subzi". Will post them soon.



Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Almost embrassed !!!

Yes I am !!! almost embrassed. For a few days while I wrote some of my new posts I figured that some of the old photos from the Blog were missing. I started freaking out and was trying to figure out how to fix it and what to do? For me it was some work I did here, especially the phots form the Chüchukästchli. I couldnt figure it out and finally asked Mana. She asked me what I have been doing?(they know I do things like that and then they have to come to my rescue) I explained it to her and here comes the embrassing moment. Because the computer was loading the photos very slowely I removed the phtotos from Picasa, thinking that if I reduce the storage it would help, and that`s what my mistake was. The moment the pictures were taken out from there, they automatically vanished from the Blog. So lesson well learnt. I thought that once if you have put some pictures on the Blog, no matter what..... it stays. But apparentely that is not the case. The stuff should always be on-line. You can never stop learning. Keeps you grounded. Every once in a while when I start thinking Ok!!! I got this and BAM!!! something like this happens and you think you still have a long way to go and so it really keeps you going.

So will never do this stupid mistake again. Mana again came to the resuce. Kids are so good now-a-days as if they are born with a chip or shall I say I was a bit stupid. Anyways "What a relief it was" for me to know and fix the problem. I shall sleep well today. I have uploaded some gone pictures on the Blog and shall do the rest of them soon.

Subh Ratri !!!


Bally! The story of "The Bally Shoe"

The name Bally does not need an introduction at least in Switzerland or Europe or may be also in the rest of the world. The Bally shoe company was started by Carl Franz Bally in the year 1851. We had a very compassionate and a "very passisonate about shoes" guide to tell us "the story of Bally". How it all started in the basement of the house and slowely become one of the best shoe makers of the world.


The office! still kept like how it used to be.

Carl Franz Bally


The handwriting was far better than printing.

The entrance to the office.

The writing desk.

Our Guide !!! She has such passion for shoes and knew a lot about it, was worth a visit.

The workshop bits.

Olden days flip-flops

This was a huge piece of amythyst stone, formed in the form of a shoe given to the Bally people from Brazil as a gift.

I have never seen such a big amytheyst

Our guide said in those days also a "little shoe" worn as a pendant was considered to be very lucky, now we know where does people got all the ideas from.

The shoe for the Pope, now if you think about it, Pope always wears red shoes.

Royal shoes.

Shoes from Japan

These were some of the "old styled shoes" but after looking at them I realised the Fashion of the shoe repeats itself and our guide said so many shoemakers come here for inspiration.

House shoes

The embrodry on the leather was done in those days by housewives and then it was made into a shoe.

A Nike from "Roger Federer"

All old classics.

Again the same, beautiful shoes and Ja one old saying from England "No brown after eight" and people used to follow it very seriously.

The shoe from "The Queen of England"

The heels.

and again, with such intricate work.

This little wodden thingy was used to wear the boots.

Winter boots.

Shoes from China.

And of course "India"

and Africa

 "The shoemakers" One very interesting thing I found out about them is. The shoemaker while making the shoe would chew on a small piece of leather. This worked like a drug for him and then he was totally in his element.

Again chinese shoes. The girls in china in those days were considered beautiful with small feet. So they were given small shoes and there feet were tied so that they stay small. 

These shoes were used in the hot regions. The women would wear them to get to the pool/water and leave them close to the pool and get in.

These are small little shoes made from procelian. A very interesting story here. If a man would love a girl he would write a letter to her and send her in this little shoe. Sometimes if the girls were lucky they would get lots of these shoes. I loved the idea. I think Vilreory should start making them !!!

The whole group.

The end.

Auf wieder sehen.
Lieben gruss