Monday, 13 October 2014

How about registering baby?

Send the following to the Embassy for Registration:
    i) Both parents' ORIGINAL marriage certificates
    ii) Both parents' ORIGINAL birth certificates
    iii) Both parents' copy of passport
    iv) Both parents' copy of IC
    v) A self-addressed envelope with CHF 5.50 stamp (make sure it's for registered letter)
    vi) Admin fee of CHF 20 (for the two documents)

Be present at Malaysian Embassy in Bern with the following to apply for either a passport or Emergency Travel Document (if you need to visit Malaysia quite soon after the birth):
    i) ORIGINAL both parents' residence Permits
    ii) ORIGINAL both parents' passports
    iii) ORIGINAL both parents' IC
    iv) ORIGINAL baby's Swiss birth certificate
    i) ORIGINAL both parents' marriage certificates
    ii) ORIGINAL both parents' birth certificates
    v) 4 passport size photos of the baby (make sure the eyes are open)
    vi) and the Baby

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

A Swiss neighbourly notice

This notice in the hallway at the entrance my apartment building from last week is asking everyone to be more careful and considerate when leaving their windows partially opened (usually for airing purposes) at night as pre-storm wind can create significant difference between indoor and outdoor air pressure causing windows to tend to slam on to their frames; and I have to agree the sound can be shocking! It took me a while to understand exactly what the person was trying to convey as the translation has obviously come from some really bad online translator.

Just below the notice (not captured in the picture) is also a reference to the clause in the house rules that specially states no noise whatsoever from 10 PM onward. 

This notice reminded me of one targeted specifically on me in 2006 about a months after moving into our first rented apartment upon arrival in Switzerland. Not that it was of the same tone and/or about the same thing but the way it was done reflects the extremism commonly found in the way the Swiss educates the society around them. However the way this particular one was handed to me (stuck on the outside of my front door!) was a little bit on the extreme end of the extremism, and very arrogantly done. I wish I still had the original paper to show it here - it's a good laugh when thinking about it again now (it wasn't then), and a good story to tell to new Auslander friends :).

What was printed very nicely and colourful on the A4 paper is still clear in my mind, and only the reconstruction of it could tell the story best:


RECONSTRUCTED NOTICE FROM SEPT 2006 (ORIGINALLY FOUND STUCK ON THE OUTSIDE OF MY FRONT DOOR)




How would you feel if you received the same notice, only a month after moving to your first home in a foreign country, still trying to learn about the new life? 





Monday, 26 August 2013

List of Malaysians restaurants (or close enough) in Switzerland

To say that Switzerland lacks Asian eateries, what more Malaysian, is not quite true anymore. But, certainly one can't compare to London. 

 When I moved here in mid 2006, I learned there had not been any Asian restaurants and takeaways in the area where I work/live (a small city about 27th km of west of Zurich) a couple of years prior to that. Since then there have at least five; could have been six if one didn't close down, and one of them is owned by Vietnamese who immigrated over many years ago and had also been to Malaysia en-route. By coincidence their nasi goreng (fried rice) smells and tastes nearly the same as those found in Malaysia. 

As a guidance to friends and followers who crave for Malaysian or "close-enough" Malaysian or those planning to visit Switzerland, or who are in the midst of their vacation and have had enough of bread and cheese :), here is a list of places you may want to check out: 

My Kitchen (no web site) @ Zurich (HALAL) - Located a few tram stops away from the Zurich main station. Owned by a Malaysian couple and has been operating since around 2008. It is a small setup for takeaway mainly although there are enough relatively comfortable high sitting / standing arrangement and space for at least (I'm guessing) 10-15 people (more outside, in Summer). Address: Stampfenbachstrasse 133, CH-8006 Zurich / Tel: +41 438 100 678 / +41 78 808 1210. They serve good authentic halal Malaysian food and fresh Sushis (the husband was for many many years a Sushi chef). Note: Open only on weekdays between 11.30 AM and 2 PM.

Singapore Restaurant @ Zurich (Web site: http://www.my-chinese.ch/restaurant-singapore-zuerich-altstetten.htm, not certain is this is the official web site) (PARTIALLY HALAL - read further) - Located some tram stops away from the Zurich main station, this restaurant has been operating for a long time, owned by a Singaporean and Malaysian partner. There are two sections to it, on one side is a proper sit-down, full service restaurant and on the other is a self-service, canteen like setup. Food selection of both sides are the same, but cheaper in the latter. You could also sometimes ask for special not on the menu dishes like nasi goreng kampung pedas ;) - ask the chef or owner. It is commonly known that their chicken dishes are halal but not other meat. But again ask the chef or owner when making your order. 

Hot Wok @ Regensdorf (a short drive or train ride from Zurich) (Web site: http://www.hotwok.ch/) (NOT HALAL) - Owned by a Malaysian as told by some friends and advertised as serving Malaysia, Indian, Thai, Chinese, Singapore and Indonesian dishes. I tried some of the food at  a lunch event catered by them and it's pretty good. 

Chillies Restaurant & Takeaway @ Zurich (Web site: http://www.chillies.ch/) (Not known if HALAL) - Located near the Zurich Hardbr├╝cke train station, in a business complex area, it is owned by a Malaysian lady and has been operating since around 2005. 

KL Teppanyaki (Web site: http://www.klteppanyaki.com/) @ Zurich (NOT HALAL) - Located in Zurich centre on a side street along the Bahnhofstrasse. A Malaysian chef was involved in the setting up and design of the restaurant. The moment you step into it you'll catch on-screens videos of Malaysian street hawkers / food and various sort of things Malaysian.  Food served is mainly fusion and one section is dedicated for Japanese kitchen. In the early days (circa 2010), one could also find teh tarik (Malaysian tea with milk) in the menu - not sure if it's still available. 

KL Teppanyaki


My Kitchen




Swiss-style 24-hour fresh farm produce vending machine

I was taking a quick spin through the nearby village with my daughter when we stumbled across this vending machine selling fresh vegetables, fruits and eggs. It was the first time that I saw a vending machines used to sell farm produce. Looking at the prices, they are a wee bit above those found in the supermarkets downtown, but I guess not so bad if one needs any of these items urgently and it's Sunday (Sunday is a no-business day in Switzerland; with a small exceptions all shops are closed, including many restaurants!). 

A Swiss-style 24-hour vegetables, fruits and eggs vending machine near where I live

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Waste handling and recycling in Switzerland

The Swiss are highly discipline when it comes to recycling and you will not NOT find any recycling collection points in every housing area and Gemeinde (municipality equivalent). For glass bottles and cooking + motor oils, they are usually found near local shopping centres and as for plastic bottles (two categories: 1- those used for soft drinks; 2- milk bottles) they are always located inside entrances of supermarkets. Having lived here for quite some time, I have to say these are well thought locations supporting their highly environmentally responsible/friendly society.

Lately in the past few years, I have begun to see deterioration in the attitude towards to cleanliness in public places. A good example is the children playground next to where I live; it's with empty bottles, plastic bags, sweet wrappers strewn all over the places, far from how it was when I first moved here. I hate to put the blame on the outsiders (foreign nationals a.k.a. Auslanders in German) as I am one of them, but I believe this issue is mostly attributable to the increasing influx of foreigners into the countries, especially those from the lower income / education groups.

While chucking off my recyclable stuff at the local collection point, I saw the following poster - confirming to some degree the issue I have just mentioned. Specifically, this notice in short is telling those who keep leaving their non-recyclable rubbish not meant for this collection point to stop doing it and bugger off!. The designated rubbish bags are pretty costly, hence, I guess the reason why some idiots simply leave them here!.


"Waste and bulky items at recycling collection points is UNFAIR!
Please pay the regular fee and dispose of your rubbish at home. Thank you!" .. is roughly what it says 

Friday, 23 August 2013

How can you not fall in love with this place

Brunni, Engelberg


This is Brunni in Engelberg, in the central region of Switzerland - those who know a little a bit about the country, it's somewhere close to Luzern or Lucerne. Click on the photo to expand the size, and tell me if you don't fall in love with the view.

It's absolutely and miraculously a gorgeous place. I can sit there looking at that view for hours.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

A zoo that I don't hate

I hate zoos. I find them to be simply a waste of time to visit. Perhaps it's an adult thing. But, I'm sure kids and adults alike who have visited the Knies Kinderzoo (kids zoo) (www.knieskinderzoo.ch/) will only have good stories to tell.

The Knies Kinderzoo is located near the old city of Rapperswill, about an hour drive from Zurich. What's interesting about this zoo is that you get the chance to pat the animals, including rhinos, giraffes, sea lions etc. So, there's a more real, close encounter with the animals than just watching from distant.

Just look at the cute face!
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