Saturday, 31 March 2012

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Wandering in the woods near Bruderhaus Tierpark today, the boys spied a partially built shelter and set off to investigate. They were quite impressed with the shelter, especially when they discovered it has every 'convenience'. As Jude is indicating, the architect has his priorities right and fitted a toilet even before the walls are up.
The boys then proceeded to use it for pinecone throwing target practice!

to throw - werfen - rüärä
to play in the dirt - im Dreck spielen - dräcklä
toilet - die Toilette - Aabee, Hüüsli, Abtritt, WC, Oertli

Friday, 30 March 2012

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I always wondered the purpose of the large 'hatch' in the pavement outside the Bahnhof  and today I saw it open and in action. It hides a hydraulic lift into which goods are loaded for the shops under the station. The lorry parks on the pavement, backs up to the platform and loads it, then it descends.
Rather clever I think!

Thursday, 29 March 2012

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In view of the "petrol shortage" in UK, perhaps the police should take a leaf out of die Polizeis Büechli and get Smart.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

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Jude needed a haircut so I took my life in my hands and took him. A dangerous thing as he is very attached to his incredible mop of hair, I was not taught much 'hairdressing' vocabulary on my German course and phrase books do not think to supply any such useful phrases.
Armed with a photo as back up, off we popped and this was the result with which Jude was and is very happy and relieved.
Jude ist sehr glücklich, weil seine Haare nicht zu kurz ist 😃

An interesting word I learned today from my Büechli - Tschuupi means hair above the ear!

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

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My favourite tree in 'my garden' otherwise known as Lindengut Park. All of a sudden it's in full bud and the brooms have turned yellow overnight.
Glorious sunshine which I have been assured is most unusual for March in Switzerland. I'm not complaining! I'm feeling buschpär - healthy and in good spirits!

Monday, 26 March 2012

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A funny one today. I bought this face mask in Müller. Unusually, the instructions are in English but out of habit I read the French and also the German. Imagine my astonishment when I discovered the following.
 The English instructions say 'Apply ...... and leave for 5-10 minutes.'
The French instructions say 'Appliquer ..... et laisser poser entre 5 et 10 minutes'
The German instructions say 'Auf Gesicht, Hals und Dekolleté auftragen. 10-15 Minuten  einwirken lassen.'

So, what is different about the skin of people who speak German, I ask myself?!

Sunday, 25 March 2012

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A lovely day in Konstanz in the sunshine, and a visit to the 'beach'. 
Pebbles and paddling made us all very happy, albeit with rather cold toes! Jude had a go at skimming - not very successfully as the stones were the wrong shape!
And it was Verkaufsoffener Sonntag - Sunday shopping - in Konstanz too. Shops aren't usually open in Switzerland or Germany on Sundays so this was quite a treat.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

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Another beautiful sunny day.
Rather than take a picture of us climbing on the bus with 2 garden chairs a table and 2 garden recliners (I was too busy carrying stuff!), here are some flowers in the park. Lovely to see them peeping through the grass.

Friday, 23 March 2012

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On the way back from school today we noticed that someone had been building towers with stones by the brook. Three perfectly vertical ebeneezers. I find pebbles very attractive and love walking on stoney beaches finding beautifully smooth stones.

Der Stein - the stone
Das Steinchen - the little stone/pebble

Thursday, 22 March 2012

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I went to the theatre tonight to see Much Ado about Nothing.
This is on the wall outsideTheater Winterthur.
Hier bin ich Mensch, hier darf ich's sein! - Here I am Man, here dare it to be!
Interesting. I may need to go and read Faust again. Haven't read it since I was at Uni.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

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The newspaper reminded me that the clocks go forward on Sunday. In English we say 'Spring forward and Fall back' to help us remember which way they go. I wonder if there's a saying in German?

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

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My Nan died yesterday so John bought me some flowers to cheer me up.
I'm glad that Coop had my favourite Fairtrade yellow roses.

Herzliches Beileid - sincere condolences
Unser herzlichstes Beileid. Unsere Gedanken sind bei Euch. - Our sincere condolences. Our thoughts are with you.

Monday, 19 March 2012

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I looked out of the window about an hour ago and there was an armed policeman outside my window.
By the time I got to the window to look more closely, another four had appeared and, along with someone dressed in a fluorescent jacket (think one of the men who works in the park), went through the gate into the park next door.

Mysterious! I'm intrigued. I had to go and fetch the boys at this point. All was quiet when I went outside and no sign of any excitement when we got back.

As you can see from their backs, the police are called die Polizei or Schmiär/Tschuggerej, and a policeman - ein Polizist - Landjegär, Tschuggär, Schürgä.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

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Drinks today!

The Halden Krone is John's (although he's prefer Feldschlössen - see here ) and the Rivella is Isaac's. He is a big fan, prefering Rivella Rot, Blau (low calorie) and Gelb (energy) to Rivella Grün (green tea).
The Süessmost was Jude's but he doesn't like fizzy drinks (das Getränk mit Kohhlensäure) - so I drank that. He prefers Apfelsaft - ohne Kohlensäure!

Today's helpful phrase!
To be drunk - betrunken sein oder blau sein (thanks to A flavour of German for that!) - bsoffe, en Chaib ha, Oel am Huet

Saturday, 17 March 2012

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Yes, two photographs today as I wanted both of my boys in today's post.

We went on a family trip to Uetliberg and walked the Planetenweg to Felsenegg for lunch and a cable car ride down to Adliswil and home. Apparently there are a lot of Planetenweg  Plantenweg is a walk on which scale models of the planets are placed in scaled relation to their position in space. So the sun at the start was huge followwed by a tiny ballbearing for  Mercury, a bigger one for Venus and so on. These planets were close together on the path, with each metre representing a million actual kilometres, whilst other planets were further apart. And Pluto appeared twice due to its orbit.

So, today's German - the planets - die Planeten
Earth  die Erde
Jupiter  der Jupiter
Mars  der Mars
Mercury  der Merkur
Neptune  der Neptun
(Pluto)  der Pluto - now officially a “dwarf planet” (ein Zwergplanet)*
Saturn  der Saturn
Uranus  der Uranus
Venus  die Venus

If you fancy labelling them in order they are :
Die Planeten - Sonnenordnung
The planets in solar order (outward from the sun)...
Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, (Pluto)*
Der Merkur, die Venus, die Erde, der Mars, der Jupiter, der Saturn, der Uranus (der Pluto)

Friday, 16 March 2012

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In the words of a song I can't stop singing....
Heute ist so ein schöner Tag :0)

Thursday, 15 March 2012

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Today's picture was chosen by my boys who met me for ice cream after school/German course today.
I think they're hoping for a chocolate rabbit that big for Easter!

Der Osterhase - the Easter bunny
Das Osterei - Easter egg
Das Ostern - Easter

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

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I'm very behind with my posts this week as I have a German exam. on Friday.

So short posts I'm afraid!

Schöne Blumen - pretty flowers
der Frühling - Spring

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

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More news and another picture from the Winterthur fire I mentioned yesterday. Thanks to World Radio Switzerland for the report - 

Winterthur fire costs millions in damage

A fire in Winterthur’s historic old town early this morning caused millions of francs in damage. 
Spokesman Marcel Strebel from Zurich cantonal police said an old town home caught fire at about 2:30 a.m.
The fire department responded three minutes later but the blaze had already spread to two other homes. 
No one was injured, and the cause of the fire is unknown.
The town’s old quarter has buildings dating from the 17th century, but it doesn’t yet appear those burned this morning were listed in the historic buildings register.

Monday, 12 March 2012

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Here's today's photograph. Great commotion and intrigue in Winterthur today with fire engines everywhere. Fire alarms alerted people at 0230 this morning to Restaurant Wilson in the Altstadt in flames. At 1700 when I passed and took the photograph, the building was still smoldering and the fire engines were still there.
More tomorrow when I've had time to digest the article (in German) in Blick am Abend that explains it all.

Word for the day - Notruf meaning emergency call.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

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A camel and a llama. Ein Kamel und ein Lama.
Don't ask why. They were just there in the middle of Konstanz.
Odd! Wie seltsam!

Saturday, 10 March 2012

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Today saw another Familie Stevens outing to Konstanz. Beautiful place, and always a pleasure to visit. The boys were thrilled with the toffee and a bag of Haribo they were given in Karstadt and I rather enjoyed the Milchkaffee.

Possibly the highlight of the day however was lunch in Maximillians.. Jude started talking about it on the train and I have to say that I was looking forward to it too.

This photo is Jude and his Weißwurst served with Bretzel and Senf. You can see how much he was looking forward to eating it. He started munching away and after a slice or two, he was given a lesson in how to eat a Weißwurst properly the Bavarian way by a gentleman sitting near us (we suspect that it was the owner!). Apparently you slice the Wurst down the middle and the scoop out the meat, leaving the skin. Suitably enlightened, Jude happily devoured his lunch. I also have to mention that my Gambas-Coco-Ginger were delicious as were John's Gambas mit Kräuter und Knoblauch and Isaac's Tagliatelle mit 4 Käsensauce.

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The Easter bunny is everywhere. There are some beautiful decorations in the shops and in sure I'll succumb soon!

This lovely rabbit (ein Kaninchen oder Chüngel/Haas) is outside the florists in Schmidgasse.
Es ist richtig, dass Blumen keine Kalorien haben.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

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Look what Jude spotted at a bus stop - a new Toblerone!
Too late for @bellaale unfortunately!
Love how the advertisement is in German apart from 'crunchy almonds'.
Pretty packaging too!

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

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After an exhausting day skiing in Laax, and having been quite ill on the journey home, Jude took to the sofa and looked very forlorn. Then he spied my new iPad app and soon perked up when I gave him the iPad and let him play.
And we had a good giggle when we were playing. We knew that the app said a German word and we had to spell it, but couldn't understand why the app kept giving us the same word - buchstabiere. Then we realized that meant 'spell'. Pleased to say that our spelling was pretty good!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

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This is the sign on the corner of the road near our home. I wondered who this General Guisan was so I looked him up.

The sign gave me a clue - General im 2. Weltkrieg

I found out the following -
He was one of only 4 Generals in Swiss history.
As General is a title only held in war time, he ceased to be a general when WWII ended.
At Rütli on July 25, 1940, General delivered the Rütlirapport to all commanding officers of the Swiss army in which he outlined the Reduit strategy and his aim never to surrender if invaded. His Reduit plan was for the army to retreat to the Alps if invaded by Germany but to resist at all costs.

Amazing what you find out when you're nosey about road signs!

Monday, 5 March 2012

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I'm going to let my picture do the talking today.

My new bicycle - mein neues Fahrrad / Velo

Sunday, 4 March 2012

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A photograph today from our tour of Winterthur. 

This is one of the church which has two towers - an act of defiance as I learned from our guide. In the 13th century, Winterthur was a vassal of the Hapsburghs. The Hapsburghs had money trouble and had to raise money so pawned the whole town to Zürich for 300 years. Every year, interest had to paid, Winterthurers had to promise to be good citizens of Zürich and new ways of making money had to be found as Zürich cut off all previous means. Winterthur turned to clock making and also to making beautiful tiled ovens, and when the church was being rebuilt later, it was built with two towers to annoy Zürich who had a churhc with two towers and had said Winti couldn't have one!

I found out all sorts of other things about Winti yesterday too - 
Winterthur is the 6th largest place in Switzerland but only became a city in 2008 when the population reached 100,000.
The name Winterthur comes from Vitudurum the name of the Roman garrison which was where Oberwinterthur currently stands.
The Stadthaus was built as a temple of democracy and was designed by Gottfried Semper.
When men and women bathed together in the public bathhouse, they had to sing Pslams to keep their minds off 'hanky panky'.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

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There are many photos that I could choose for today. I've been to the Stadthaus for a welcome from the Stadtpresident, had a tour of Winterthur Aldstadt, run 11k Laufsporttag Winterthur and got a new bicycle. Might bank a few images for another day...

Today's photo is my prize for completing the Laufsporttag. Not your usual medal, is it? Not quite sure about the sausage but I'm looking forward to the cheese - der Käse - de Chääs - and muesli - das Müsli - Müesli (not together obviously) and to trying the pear bread - das Birnbrot.

Friday, 2 March 2012

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My number has arrived for my  Zuri Laufcup race tomorrow - the 43. Laufsporttag Winterthur  around Winterthur-Seen.

I like the way it has my name on it. Hopefully I'll get a few shouts of 'Hopp Hopp Lisa' which will be good. It always makes me smile when I get encouragement, particularly when I'm going uphill and feeling the pain!! Although last time someone shouted my name whilst I was running, I had no idea it was me for whom they were shouting as I wasn't expecting anyone who knew me to be there!

Thursday, 1 March 2012

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Spring is here! Der Frühling ist da!

There was a bit of worry this morning at school drop off when woolly hats were in evidence but by midday, it was warmer and beautiful sunshine reigned. It was rather warm in German class!

We learned about weather words today and how to turn the noun into an adjective.
Der Stürm - stürmisch  the storm - stormy
Das Eis - eisig  the ice - icy
Der Nebel - neblig   the fog - foggy
Der Sonnenschein - sonnig  the sunshine - sunny
Der Wind - windig   the wind - windy
Das Gewitter - gewittrig  the storm - stormy
Der Regen - regnerisch  the rain - rainy

And in Swiss German stürmisches Wetter is described as Schtrubuusätä