So here is a blast update of my current happenings. I recently made a huge change by moving from Lawrence, KS to Lausanne, Switzerland, in order to pursue my career in architecture with a position at a local firm. There were a lot of factors to my decision: my inability to find a job in the US, my longtime fascination with Swiss architecture and design, le Corbusier, the geography, the languages … just to name a few. At this point, I’m keeping an open mind about the big move. Maybe I will come back to the States after 18 months, or maybe someday I will look back nostalgically to the time when I came to Switzerland with, “only two small bags and a little courage” or something cheesy. Okay, let’s be honest, two 70 pound bags isn’t little, but c’mon, it gets fucking cold here.
The first week was a bit tough; it is difficult to find an apartment in this city. During my search, I stayed at a flat belonging to a colleague which at the time was under complete renovation. The view was incredible. By my second full day, I was already helping him to install his new parquet floor. Not a bad deal, considering I didn’t have to pay for a hotel. While he moved into the new place, I got away for the weekend.
I spent my first weekend visiting Zurich, hopefully the first of many trips. I was lucky enough to attend a BBQ at a historically preserved house designed by architect Alfred Roth. The house felt more American prairie style than any other house I’ve seen here. The plan is significant because it was “the first free corner under a hexagon,” or something like that. I should have taken more photos.
I was even luckier to have spent a long weekend with this dude (seen above). Having a local to show you around in a city is the best. We watched the Boorg (Berhhhgg) or something?… basically a bored-looking snowman on top of a pile of flammable shit… burn to signify the end of winter. It’s a nice tradition in Zurich, and it also meant Monday was practically a holiday.
Driving southwest the sunset makes the mountaintops appear pink. It. is. beautiful.
Life in Lausanne is good so far. I have a roommate with two cats, and I’m a little iffy on that. Cats are cute and gross. One important lesson: ALWAYS use ALL the screws ikea gives you, otherwise your furniture will break and collapse on you. I had to call ikea after a fit of tears to get them to replace some shitty mdf pieces to my new armoire. I’ve accepted defeat, and that I can’t always do things alone, and will seek assistance with the next round of assembly. humph* crosses arms*
The roof of my apartment building is a sweet sundeck, with a majestic view of the Alps and Lake Geneva. I can even see France from my balcony!
I know many of you have been wondering about my to-good-to-be-true job. It’s pretty good so far. But today was just my first day. This is the office. It is a tiny storefront. I work with 3 other guys, and we have a boss who travels back and forth from Lausanne to Zurich. He is also a professor at EPFL, which is a prime way to stay connected to academia. The office is in a part of town called Renens, and is next to the train. It’s a bit industrial and gritty but there’s still a view of the mountains. I’m not going to elaborate on my job right now, but exists. This is what I do in “real life,” but I do still miss my “fake real life” as a barista from Kansas.