It’s all so bizarre, a good bizarre, but bizarre nonetheless. This business of finding a place to live has made me realize just how much my life has changed over the last 2 years. Every time I turn around I’m doing something I never imagined doing. It’s a bit like eating salad all the time — you know it’s good for you but all you really want is a medium rare steak, greasy fries and a big-ass chocolate cake for dessert.

Certainly the process of dealing with bureaucrazy and apartment hunting has offered me the wonderful opportunity to do battle with my worst character trait: impatience. So far, it’s a losing one I’m afraid. I’ve never been so impatient in my life. The other day we saw an apartment that was acceptable as long as we were granted the profound privilege of putting my beloved washer and dryer in the kitchen. (Sidebar: the Swiss rarely have their own machines and rely on common laundry rooms with a strict schedule. I’m a free spirit baby and restricting myself to Tuesday mornings for washing is not on, nor is getting rid of my swanky machines less than a year old).

So. We went to the agency to ask if this would be possible. We couldn’t get past the receptionist (as usual) to ask anyone this simple question. You apply first, ask questions later. Then she told us she would mail us an application, we’d have to mail it back and then we’d begin the long, drawn out mess of being considered. That was it for me. Last straw, meet camel’s back. We walked out deflated yet again but this time I was annoyed. Up came my ego, I mean sweet Jaysus, we’ve bought and sold like a million houses. I cannot take this foolishness a moment longer.

But it’s not all bad news. If you’re going to be frustrated you might as well do it where they have vineyards that look like this…

And benches that look like this…

There may also be more good news. I don’t want to say too much in case I jinx it (clearly the transformation from psychiatrist to psychic is almost complete), but an agency has decided to actually put us in front of the owner of an apartment we applied for a while back. This is a big step but no guarantee of acceptance. Frankly, I’m running out of steam.

Here I am, a full grown (freakishly grown) woman fretting over what I should wear to beg a guy to bestow upon me a tiny, expensive apartment that 2 years ago I wouldn’t have even remotely considered as a home for us. One toilet, which means the risk of divorce is high. Almost no closets, unless you count the kitchen, and yet I feel like if we don’t get it, it will be a tragedy of epic proportions.

I cannot for the life of me explain my thoughts and actions of late. Moving to Switzerland is complicated, it’s driving me bananas, it may even be ill-advised, but it’s a sticky notion that will not be unstuck. I must rise above my petulance and sense of entitlement and go through all the motions with a calm and peaceful mind. I must be gentle and polite and speak in hushed tones.

Alors, I’m off to the meeting. If you read news about some poor Swiss man beaten to a bloody pulp by a sweaty woman with a giant nylon bag full of immigration paperwork, you’ll know how it went.

 

LIVE UPDATE FROM IMMIGRATION HELL HEADQUARTERS: BREAKING NEWS

This just in: Swiss landlord offers lease to giraffe-woman and a man called Rusty. The agreement in principle includes the promise of a fully renovated kitchen with space for a washer and dryer. All details to be finalized at document signing on Monday morning. Giraffe and Rusty were too busy dancing and high-fiving to comment. Full story in Monday’s edition.

 

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