Well mes amis, I am reborn, delivered from the depths into this new life. No heels at ungodly hours. No parents hootin’ and hollerin’ at youngsters all hours of the day. No hipster crashing about the apartment next door like an inebriated elephant. While certainly we have some stompers above us, the situation is markedly improved. Be advised, these are early days, so I reserve the right to freak out at the slightest deterioration.

I fit in the shower (trust me, not always has this been the case), the washer and dryer fit in the bathroom, the kitchen feels enormous (by European standards) and the heating is sufficient to defrost the icy pontoons found at the end of each of my legs.

We even have this intercom/phone/buzzer thingy—how it works is anyone’s guess. I do know that it functions not only as the ringer for the main door of the building, but also as our apartment doorbell. Well, I know that now.

The first time it rang, I picked up the receiver, pressed the blue button and walked away marveling at my chic Swissy self. Then, two minutes later, it rang again. I rolled my eyes, pressed the blue button and wondered what kind of simpleton can’t coordinate himself to get into a building on the first try.

Of course, the UPS guy had indeed gotten it right on the first try. He was standing on one side of our apartment door ringing in vain, while the real simpleton in this scenario was standing on the other side of the door, going “bonjour? bonjour?” into a wall receiver and pressing a blue button until she was blue in the face. And to think people once placed their lives in my hands.

But who cares about being the town twit when there’s this …

The view from our balcony. It’s hard to capture the scale and majesty of these mountains in a photo. There are few things with the power to make me feel small, but I could be positively petite when I step out here. It’s an odd sensation for one so vertically blessed. And speaking of views and oddities …

I took this picture from the window in the hall of our apartment, a window that looks exactly like the one you see in the photo. This is the next building over and some other person’s home. I can tell you this—the architect who designed this building vastly overestimated my interest in the lives of others.

I was standing there watching a dark-haired lady casually walk around, sit at her desk, putter about in her kitchen. I was so dumbfounded that I forgot the view goes both ways. As soon as I realized she could see me as well as I could see her, I bolted around the corner like a lunatic, so at least she has an inkling of how mature I am.

I’m still scratching my head over this one. There’s a giant skylight above this space carved out in the middle of the building. I admit it’s a clever way to add light to apartments, but to not give a fig about folks gawking right into your home seems completely bizarre to me. I did my best to roll with it. Fine, I thought, if it’s a clear view of my bits and bobs they want, then who am I to deny them?

Big talk. I’m way too North American for that mess. I lasted about 28 hours before a cheap pair of curtains went up. I don’t want everybody knowing my business. I mean you just never know about people, do you? Next thing some wacky Swiss woman is posting details about her neighbours online and I think we can all agree—that’s just weird.

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