Collection abc – N is for Nature, Nostalgia and New Year

Here is the “N” installment of my abc collection. I choose about three words and write something regarding them trying to relate them to Switzerland or the Swiss or my life in Switzerland. This week’s words start with “n”. “N” is for nature, nostalgia and new year.

is for Nature

The best thing one can do when it is raining is to let it rain.
~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Nature does its best to frustrate us sometimes. At least Swiss-nature does and fall is a good example thereof. Here, fall is not the splash of colors it is in the States. It never has been and never will be. Why? I believe it is because the majority of native trees here aren’t the ones that turn those magnificent reds and oranges.

The most popular tress in Switzerland are the spruce trees and yews, also known as evergreens. Although there are trees that change color here I have never seen the magnificent colors I saw in the States. You know, the ones that make you want to sit down and paint. Or at the very least pull your camera out.

In the States the hills are populated with the sugar and red maples where the fall colors range from deep red to yellow and orange. Of course, if you have a wet fall then you might only get brown but chances are good that you will get a color-explosion.

Back to Switzerland, in the fall it would be nice if at least the trees could help put come color out there. Unfortunately, we do get a good amount of fog in our area. So in essence no one would be able to see them anyway. It would be wasted energy. No, I guess the best is just to wait the fall out or go into hibernation until winter brings snow and blue skies.

is for Nostalgia

Nostalgia is when you want things to stay the same. I know so many people staying in the same place.
~ Jeanne Moreau

Me too, I know many people who stay in the same job almost forever. That, to me is very similar to staying in the same place, similar to a comfort zone. After Ben had taught school for a couple of years he thought long and hard if he really wanted to do that for an additional 30 years. He looked around and saw how dissatisfied his colleagues were. Many had felt they had dug themselves into a hole and couldn’t get out. He decided no, he didn’t want to be locked into one job and started looking for alternatives. He told his boss that he was going back to the university to open up more opportunities for himself. His boss was shocked and couldn’t believe he would leave a secure job! Ben did it and now has a palette of possibilities if the chance should arise.

I have a Swiss friend like Ben’s boss, that I met when I was becoming a librarian. When I told him I was quitting my job thank goodness he didn’t lecture me. Still, it was obvious he thought I was making a grave mistake to put more energy into our business. Come to think about it, I have done the same thing with my art – I move from one technique to the next. I love it and it makes life so interesting.

But, not all Swiss are stuck in one job or rut for sure. I read somewhere awhile back that every 7 years your job changes so substantially that even if you don’t change your job in essence you have.

I guess nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.

is for New Year

Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.
~ Oprah Winfrey

Okay, my timing is just a tiny-winy bit off here. I should have checked when I would hit the letter “N” and started about 3 weeks later. Ben had an uncle who did that. Well, not with a blog, I don’t believe he even wrote a blog, he might not even have known what a blog was. No, he set his wedding date to fall on a Sunday for his 25th anniversary. Cool and very calculating, but I digress.

Well, well, if a new year is another chance to get it right, then so be it. In that case I’ve had lots and lots and lots of chances and still haven’t gotten it right. But, if that means once you get it right there are no more new years for you, I’ll take the fumble with gratitude.

Our Swiss New Year is really laid back and enjoyable. Usually we keep it a family thing, occasionally we’ve celebrated with friends. I’ll blog about that at a later, more appropriate date. Assuming, of course that I haven’t gotten it right yet.

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