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Apr 01 2019
Mar 23 2019
In case someone is interested concerning the outcome about the search for my roots. This is what happened:
My father actually contacted me by email! Sadly, he wrote that he hadn’t anything left from his father. The only photo he had of him, has been destroyed when he was a teenager….
So no, no letter or documents available. At least I know now how to write and pronounce the English name correctly 😃
But amazingly he also wrote that he never wanted to end our contact. The last time we saw each other (more than twenty years ago) and then said goodbye, we arranged for a new meeting. Unfortunately, afterwards I saw that on that date I had already arranged to meet my girlfriend, so I called and cancelled with my father. I told him that I was sorry and I would look forward to a new arrangement – which never came. Therefore, I thought, he wasn’t really interested keeping in touch….
Well, now I learned, that he thought the same. For in his eyes, I’ve cancelled the meeting with him because I rather wanted to go out with my girlfriend. Like, something “better” had come up, suddenly.
Ridiculous really…and albeit it’s such a long time ago, I know for sure, that I would never have done that. An appointment is an appointment!
So I explained that to him in a new email and also told him what a silly misunderstanding it must have been. He thought that I wasn’t interested to keep in contact and I thought the same of him….🙈
Anyway, last weekend we talked on the telephone, after he explained (again in an email), that he and his wife would gladly meet me and my husband and we would be welcome at their home in Zurich. So we settled for a Saturday in April, Patrik and I are invited for dinner and I’m sure we’ll have a lot to talk about.
Isn’t it funny how life plays sometimes? Regrettably, I couldn’t find out much more about my family history, but instead, I’ve recovered my “roots” somehow, after all 🥂🍾
Mar 16 2019
Well, since I’m a bit superstitious, I almost don’t dare to say it….
But we can’t deny that the last few weeks we did have some bookings for Luna Azzurra. Plus people are showing a general interest in her and ask questions by email.
So, considering that Patrik and I are new to this whole business, I would say we can be happy so far!
It’s still early in the year and we are not sure if people do usually wait a bit longer with booking boats for vacation. The weather isn’t really tempting either, perhaps a bit early to think about sailing, swimming and hot weather…. At least here in central Europe it still looks more like winter than spring. Luckily no more snow, but still chilly with cold winds. The sun is kind enough and presents herself sometimes, though!
When checking the weather in the south it’s a few degrees warmer and we envy the lucky ones there. We also saw on the webcams that the marina is starting to wake up from its winter sleep. On nice weekends people are there, fiddling with their boats, go out sailing or simply enjoy a few days on their yachts!
Yeah, Patrik and I do wish we would live closer to our Luna Azzurra!
As a little treat, we’ll drive to Loano on the 30th March and stay for one night (only). Most of all we have a customer who would like to test Luna Azzurra for a few hours on Sunday morning till early afternoon. Plus we plan to fix the bow toilet (nothing major, but it has to be done).
So why not taking the chance and do a little work on Saturday afternoon and meeting a guest on Sunday?
Furthermore, on Saturday evening we’ll meet someone who owns a sailing school in Loano. Naturally, we look forward to this gathering – who knows what comes out?
This time we won’t sleep on Luna Azzurra by the way, but in a small hotel in Borghetto Santa Spirito. Firstly, we always wanted to visit this little town, which lies just beside Loano. The other reason is that the effort of cleaning the boat after only one night isn’t worth it.
So yes, things are happening and good ones too! We definitely are very excited and hope for a good sailing season with many happy guests!
Cheers and Ahoy!
Mar 09 2019
No, I don’t mean my teeth, but my family history!
Not everyone knows that I grew up with a – very loving – Swiss stepfather. When I was two years old, my “real” parents got divorced. Fortunately, my mum – who is Swiss also – married again two years later and that relationship fitted perfect!
So, all things considered, my brother and I had a very happy childhood and our family was complete when our step brother was born a few years later!
The (already loose) contact with my real father – who is Italian – ended more than 20 years ago. I was sad at the beginning, because the break-up wasn’t my choice and I blamed myself for a long time. But after so many years it doesn’t bother me anymore!
Luckily, the contact with my grandparents (Nonna and Nonno, as they were called, since they were Italians) was always intact.
I know since childhood, that my Nonno wasn’t the real father of my father – but that is a much more tragic story, than a divorce!
If you want I’ll share this fascinating tale with you.
This is my grandmas story – her name was Anna, by the way:
World War II, although almost at its end, still raged in Europe and Anna was a beautiful twenty year old girl, who lived with her family in Naples, south Italy. As it was common in the south, religion and family honour was still very much alive then. Hmm….it still is, when I think about it.
Anyway, as we know from history, allied troops were also stationed in Italy. So it happened that my grandma met a young, good looking English fighter pilot and they fell in love! He’s name was James.
So far so good, it could be the start of a beautiful romance! Sadly, it’s not…..
James had to leave for a new combat mission after a while, but not before promising her and her family that he’ll be back and they would get married as soon as possible.
God, they must have been crazy for each other! It’s unimaginable, how painful it must have been to say goodbye under these circumstances.…
As if this wasn’t bad enough, my grandma found out that she was pregnant…..and that in south Italy and not married! We cannot imagine the drama that surrounded her. She was now the family’s disgrace and as soon as her belly started to grow, she wasn’t allowed outside the house anymore.
When they had visitors, they hid her in the closet…She must have suffered a lot. Not only was she worried sick about her beloved James, but also had to deal with her unforgiving family.
And all that in the madness of the gruesome war, albeit near its end!
Then came the probably worst day in Anna’s life: A letter came and informed her, that James had died on a mission in Malta! She must have been devastated….
I’m not sure, if the army informed her, or if James’ family sent her the letter and let her know about the tragedy. What I know is that his family – who lived in Liverpool – offered her to adopt her child, if she couldn’t keep it. He would be loved and well taken care of!
Well, apparently, this wasn’t an option for Anna, and when her son – my dad – was born, she kept it. I have no idea, how she got her way with the family and all that. But somehow she “won” and kept her baby. Well, let me tell you, she was a strong-minded woman!
Her son was baptized of the name Mario and lived in Italy until he was about twelve years old. As far as I know he had a happy childhood and was very spoiled – he meant everything to Anna.
But that was about to change, when she moved to Switzerland, in order to find work. Probably the perspectives were much better than in Italy. Here she met Giorgio from northern Italy, and soon they got married. For Anna it was not only love, but a perfect solution. Only little Mario was really jealous of his stepfather, suddenly he had to share his mum with someone.
So they moved to Zurich in a big apartment and soon had two daughters together – Mario’s stepsisters.
They had a good life, were hard working, the kids grew up, went to school, started to work…the usual.
When Mario was around twenty, he met my mum and they fell in love. Soon she was pregnant and they got married. One year later my brother was born, but unfortunately, the marriage didn’t work out and when I was two, they divorced. I reckon, they were simply too young.
As I mentioned earlier, my brother and I always kept the contact to our grandparents and our two aunties.
Unfortunately, Mario wasn’t so keen on his two kids from his past and after two attempts from my side to keep in touch, I had to understand, that the interest was from my side only. So more than 20 years ago, it was the last time I’ve heard from him.
Anyway, my Nonna told me the whole story, about James, how she coped with her life in Italy, her joy about Mario and the move to Switzerland. Unfortunately, she could never show me any documents, photos or letters from her fascinating life. When I asked her about it, she told me that years ago, Mario wanted to do some family research, so she gave everything she had to him. As far I know, he found out where his father’s family in England lives. But he never dared to contact them.
My grandma died in December 2017, over 90 years old – about twenty years after my Nonno had passed away. And suddenly I realized that my father was the last person, who knew about our history and that he still had the documents his mother gave to him. Well, I certainly hope so…..
So this week I worked up the courage and sent a letter to Mario (he lives in Zurich since many years, with his new family).
My letter to him contains no accusation whatsoever and I explained that he wouldn’t have to worry about having to meet me, or something like that.
But I explained my thoughts, about our family and our extraordinary story. And in case it was true what Nonna had told me, about giving all the paperwork to him, I kindly asked him to send copies of the documents, letters and photos etc. to me. One day it would definitely be too late and I would miss an important part about my past! I don’t even know how the English family name is spelled correctly, I only know how to pronounce it (roughly).…
Well, meanwhile Mario must have received my letter….I truly hope he read it and is considering my request! Let’s see….waiting isn’t my strengths and this is a bit nerve wrecking, to be honest….!
Feb 23 2019
Well, as you all know my mum and dad have forced me to write a post this weekend.
After being threatened with deprive of food (especially goodies), drink (especially oat milk), and sleep (by being locked out), there was nothing else for me but to obey – poooooorest meeeee !
Gosh, where to start then? Ten years ago I was kidnapped from my original home and…. (ops, just caught a stern glance from mum…)
OK, OK here it comes: Ten years ago – in March 2009 – me and my brother Thor were actually rescued from a faraway place called Thun, in the canton of Berne. We both were 1.5 years of age and it wasn’t a horrible home actually, but the people there didn’t want us anymore and sought a new home for us.
Yes, I had a brother whose name was Simba (mine was Minou), here are a few pics of us.
Our mum and dad changed our names to Odin and Thor, which were Nordic Gods! That was kind of cool and we got used to them in an instant.
We also adapted quickly to our new home, which is a big house with garden. Of course we had our very own doors and could choose, being outside or inside. OK, not the first month, though. My mum wanted us to stay inside, so we would learn where our home is…as if we wouldn’t have known it *phh*
However, we were more than glad (and our mum and dad too, believe me!), when we finally were allowed to go outside and discover our new kingdom! That was really exciting and we soon got to know our furry neighbors…. It didn’t take long until they stopped intruding our garden. *hehe*
We truly had a lot of fun together, Thor and me, and on sunny days we sometimes even went for a walk with our mum and dad.
That was apparently kind of special, since only dogs go for walks with their humans, so they say. But hey, who is the clever species? We cats choose, if we can be bothered going for walks.
Well, usually, after a while we didn’t want to walk anymore, and mum and dad had to carry us home…That caused a few smirks, mostly from other people we met…. It must have looked hilarious!
Another fun thing was when we chased each other around the garden and up the trees! Haha, you should have seen our humans…. especially mum always looked a bit uneasy, when Thor and I were stuck highest up in our maple tree! And boy, it was even more fun when it was stormy outside!
Some days we went mice hunting and tried to beat each other about who would catch more or the biggest mouse! Mum and dad weren’t very amused when we took our prey home…..they still aren’t…
I didn’t like the winter or rain, though. Thor didn’t mind, he did his rounds albeit it was snowing or pouring down. (I bet he hated it too, but had to show off!). But I was the one laughing at the end, when he got rubbed off, after he came inside, soaked….haha, sorry bro!
When mum and dad went away sometimes, we always had Cony, our catsitter, who lives just across the road. She and her three kids made sure we wouldn’t miss our humans too much and she spoiled us rotten!
Yeah, we really had a great time together, even when we were fighting sometimes. Never serious, though, but it happened every now and then. That’s common, isn’t it?
Then, in July 2015 Thor had a terrible car accident and left us all devastated and heartbroken…..although it’s been four years soon, it still seems unreal sometimes that he isn’t with us anymore – we miss him daily!
I’m glad and proud though, that I had such a cool brother. He showed and taught me lot and I still remember him very clearly.
He will always have his special place in our hearts. His urn with a photo is sitting on the sideboard, beside Gulliver’s ashes. He was the cat who lived his last 2.5 years with mum and dad, a couple of years before us.
Gone but never forgotten, as one might say….
Nevertheless, live must go on and so did mine too. My humans are much more worried about me after what happened, and I have the feeling, they would rather keep me inside permanently…Well, no way! Who would keep the other cats away from my garden, if not me?
And, actually, I became a bit older too. I love to sleep a lot nowadays and am always surprised, when my humans come home after work….A whole day gone again…?! *whoops*
But hey, I’m a cat and that’s what we cats do: Sleep (a lot) and getting spoiled (even more)!
In this spirit, I wish you all a purrful life and take care! You never know what’s awaiting you around the corner… 😺
Feb 16 2019
We are very sorry, there will be no post this weekend….
The reason is quite simple: All of us three thought the other one would write something. So on the end Odin was snoring through the days and relied on us, while Patrik and I – being busy with work – assumed Odin or the other one would have plenty of time to play author this week…
Well, apparently not.
Means the mood between us is a bit….well, it could be better!
However, we agreed that Odin will write a post for next weekend – he promised and even swore on his paw!
So, there isn’t much more to do for us than wishing you all a cozy and sunny weekend – at least spring sent his prematurely greetings to Switzerland!
PS: The truth of all this is, we honestly lacked ideas…. Bet, that’s what you suspected too!
Feb 09 2019
Not so long ago I’ve heard about LUSH….Well, the soaps….and started to inform myself about these products. Mainly on their website, but also critical comments in the internet, written from people, who tested them.
According to LUSH, everything is produced without animal testing and only natural ingredients are used, which are fair traded. Therefore, these products do not harm the environment and many are even vegan.
Of course soaps are known since, like, forever. So nothing new about that, BUT….
I couldn’t believe my luck, when I discovered they even have shampoo and conditioner in their assortment – as a SOAP BAR! Does that really work? Do you get the familiar foam you want to have? And how nurturing are these products for your hair?
Slowly, it dawned on me that when using these soaps I would reduce the plastic bottle waste a lot! THAT convinced me definitely – I had to test these slippery buggers!
For Christmas I got a shampoo (GODIVA) and a shower bar from my mum, which I couldn’t wait to test. And WOW, was I flabbergasted! The shampoo not only smelled fantastic, but my hair did become clean indeed and…lush! It obviously worked very well and I was positively surprised!
Well, the next step was, A. get one more shampoo (I wanted to test SEANIK), plus a conditioner (BIG) and B. get rid of the existing hair products in our home – and asap (in using them up of course).
Meanwhile, I’ve tested SEANIK and BIG and must say I’m so more than happy with the result! I’m still amazed how much foam you get with the shampoo. The conditioner still seems a bit odd and I’ve got to get used to it, but I really can’t imagine going back to plastic bottles again!
Each less is a win for our world…small steps, but – hey, better than nothing!
LUSH also offers bars as body lotion, face cosmetic and even make-up. And last but not least dental care, such as tooth-”paste” – which isn’t a paste, but powder or tabs. I’ll have to try this soon.
One more plus: When flying with only hand luggage, you have your “liquids” not liquid anymore and much less weight to carry (and more room for other stuff, hehe)!
Well, visiting a LUSH store does take some time (ask Patrik)! Not only have they a huge selection of products, but one can also test most of them. It’s definitely not easy to make a choice at the end…. *sigh*
In order to store these soaps at its best – they shouldn’t be wet or in the shower all the time – I decided to hang them in small net bags on the wall. It doesn’t only look pretty and organized, but the whole bathroom smells wonderful and fresh…shame I can’t include a sample of it with this post.
So, to cut a long story short: I’ve definitely found my products and I’m convinced of doing something good – for myself and the nature!
And you know what? My problem about plastic bottles, waste and not wanting to harm the environment when being on the boat, it’s suddenly solved as well!
Soapy greetings to you all