Monday, November 05, 2007

Zurich Recap: Sunday

Sunday morning we got up, had breakfast, packed our bags, then checked out of the hotel, leaving our bags behind with them to enjoy one more (half)day in Zurich. We decided to check out the local art museum this time, which turned out to be really cool. It was bigger than we thought, and we kinda had to rush a few places to try to get to see everything we wanted. But Zach rated it as one of the better art museums he's been to. Lots of cool stuff to see.

I think it was already about 3pm by the time we were done at the museum, and had just enough time to grab a last hot chocolate all together before heading to the hotel to grab our bags and head to the train station. Zach and I were headed back to Geneva, Hank and Susan off to the next leg of their trip in Germany. We said our good-byes and then went our separate ways.

When we first arrived I was worried about the language thing again. You get so used to be comfortable (enough) with the local language, that it's really odd being somewhere and not even really knowing how to say simple things like, well, "hello." And you can't even use standard German phrases, as Swiss German is quite a bit different, and do they even make Swiss German phrasebooks?? However, it was not a problem. I don't think we ran into a single person the whole weekend that didn't speak passable, if not perfect, English. It reminded me of something Francisca (a local Dutch friend) said once, about why all Dutch people learn English b/c, well, who outside their country is ever going to learn Flemish? Zach and I were talking one of the nights about how, if we'd ended up in Zurich instead of Geneva, we probably would have learned a few phrases in Swiss German but not much else b/c there's little point, where as French is (a little) more necessary in Geneva and is also spoken by more people in general. While communication was not a problem, it still made me appreciate knowing the amount of French I do know, as you still feel like a bit of an ugly American when you have to keep asking people to speak to you in English. Zach did feel cool about at least having the back-up of offering French or Spanish if someone didn't speak English. ; ) Though it seems far fewer Swiss Germans know any French than know English...

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