Thursday, April 23, 2009

Survey Says

And now it's time for a little survey here at Six Hours Ahead:

Choose your answer before reading on.

Did you answer? Huh? Did you?

We were warned by people and guidebooks that the Swiss would be cold, aloof and perhaps even unhelpful. Our experience has been anything but that. In fact, my experience has been that these are the nicest, friendliest, most gracious people I have ever met. Even the teenagers will stand to give you a seat on the tram.

Everyone has been amazing. Yet, there does seem to be a little bit of racism running amok.

Example 1:

Health Insurance Guy: If you take this cheap insurance, your wife could end up sharing a hospital room with a Turkish woman!

Jason: Blank look.

Health Insurance Guy: Turkish!!!!

Now, truth be told, I don't want to share a hospital room with a Turkish woman. I don't want to share a hospital room with an American woman either. I did that in Doylestown and it was the closest I've ever come to murdering someone. I am glad we moved because I was afraid that Daniel and her daughter would end up in the same school class and I would have to deal with her again. She was so obnoxious and rude and screechy that I could hardly stand it.

So, no, I don't want to share a room with anyone. But if I do, Turkish is probably preferable to my previous roommate.

Example two:

Jason to Relocation Woman: What about Pratteln? Is that a nice area? (We asked because there is an LDS congregation out there.)

Relocation woman: Oh no, you don't want to live there. That's where the foreigners live.

Suzanne and Jason: (quite puzzled.)

Jason: But we're foreigners.

Relocation woman: No. For-eign-ers.

So, we get it. We're the right type of foreigners because we're white and have money. Pratteln has the wrong kind of foreigners, apparently. Probably Turkish. (But Turkish food, yum.) Plus, the Ikea is out there, so it's an attractive place for us.

Here's a little political advertisement:

The text means "For Our Security." Notice the sheep colors.

But it's not just about skin color. It's about ethnicity, apparently. Here's another political ad:

The birds are black, but this is apparently about allowing Bulgarians and Romanians to work in Switzerland.

Interesting, is what I have to say.

But, as I've said, everyone has been beyond nice to us. But I still don't want to share a hospital room with any of them.


  1. That is funny. I wouldn't want to share a hospital room either. The horror!

  2. Wow, such interesting cultural differences... I guess the only difference between there and here is people are less blatant about it.

  3. And we're lectured by our politicians about how culturally sensitive Europeans are! Spare me. Anyway, I'd take the area by the IKEA : )

  4. Wow, life with the Swiss Family Lucas. all that stuff is here too, we just have adjusted to it all. Funny thing. Most people shun me and wouldn't want to share a hospital room with me and I'm not even turkish. I'm surprised Suzanne talks to me. I'm surprised anyone talks to me

  5. HAHA, they were like that in Singapore too... specifically the "You will share your hospital room with someone of dubious origins and therefore contract leprosy!!"

    When Amanda broke her arm, we were rushed to the very front of the VERY long line of people at the hospital (most of which were probably suffering more than she was) just because my dad was the head financial dude at the hospital.


    I like the sheep graphic though, it made me laugh.