The last 10 days or so have been total, unbroken chaos and work-related mania… but now it’s over, and I’m back!
Last Wednesday, I went on my first real business trip all the way to Stockholm, which made me feel like a very fancy lady, and then yesterday I got back from real business trip number two, which was to Zurich, which totally outshone my former fanciness. Both of these trips were related to my job teaching Business English in Malmö: the first was to make a bid presentation for Skolverket, which is like the Swedish Department of Education, because we’re in the running to win a contract with them, and the second was to teach a full-day seminar to the International Pricing and Market Access department of an international pharmaceuticals company. Both trips were extremely interesting, challenging, and inspiring—I feel more confident in my abilities than ever before, but at the same time, I have a lot of ideas about areas where I want to improve.
Plus the Zurich people put me up in a four star hotel, so I really want to do more trips like this. Ha! How’s that for motivation?
On a different note, it turns out that Zurich is a really amazing city. I had absolutely no time to do any research ahead of time, so I just grabbed a map and hopped on a tram downtown. Little did I know, for example, that a river runs straight through the heart of Zurich, and you can stroll along the water and listen to street musicians play or sit down at a cafe and drink champagne at 3:00 on a Tuesday, as I saw some well-dressed businessmen doing.
There’s also a huge lake with lots of sailboats and a huge expanse of open sky, which gives you this almost-Stockholm feeling, where you feel like the city and the natural world remain in balance, unlike in so many modern metropolises, where skyscrapers obscure the sky and industrial wharves overwhelm the water.
Of course I know that Switzerland was neutral throughout the World War I and II, but I was reminded of that by the pristine condition of old buildings and churches, which have clearly been untouched by the wars that destroyed so many other European landmarks. I also loved the alpine lodge-style buildings standing proudly between more modern apartment buildings and shopping centers!
Oh, and did I mention there was chocolate… and mini macaron-wannabe Luxemburgerlis…! Love.
I took a million pictures (what a surprise), but here are some of the water to get started. Did I mention that it was actually hot, sunny, and slightly-humid? And it’s almost October. Maybe I will have to move to Zurich. Out with the old, in the new (super hot Zurich banker) (just kidding) (unless you’re a super hot Zurich-based banker, of course, in which case I’m totally not kidding).
I especially love the man fishing in his boat—that guy is living the life.