Bye bye California, welcome Switzerland

After a bit over two years in the US we have decided to move back to Europe. We feel very grateful for having had the option to live in that fantastic country for so long and we will miss all the friends we made or met again there. The area of Zurich, our new home, looked like this when we moved earlier this year: View of Lake Zürich from atop Üetliberg.

Baptism of fire

Last weekend we celebrated Loes’ birthday with a bike ride to a nearby park south of Cupertino, California. Our original goal was to go a bit farther than the park we went to last time. However at the junction where we should have turned left I was convinced we had to turn right. Instead of a relaxed twenty minutes ride we spent the next hour clambering 600 meters (2000 feet) elevation with 9% average grade and some stretches exceeding 18% inclination.

Two years in Silicon Valley, two years in the suburbs

It has been nearly two years since we moved to the US. This post is about some of the little things that we have noticed living in the suburbs of Silicon Valley, California. We do the laundry in a laundry room outside of our apartment, and we have to pay $1.50 plus detergent every time. On the one hand you spend more money, on the other I think it’s good for the environment because it reduces usage.

Halloween

We are one week away from Halloween and walking around the neighborhood you can see how people are preparing for it. During Christmas it was all about overweight men flying in sleighs and red socks hanging all over the place. Now it’s all about undead people and scary stuff.          

Singapore street signs

A few months ago I visited Singapore for a couple of days and one of the things that grabbed my attention were the street signs. Here are some examples: “Growing up with Yeo’s”, saw on the subway. I assume this means it’s designed for people with kids. Why, why? Ah, now I see. If you haven’t been in Asia or Middle East that’s their traditional way of disposing of body garbage.

A week in Hyderabad

More than a year ago I had the opportunity to travel to Hyderabad, India for a week. Hyderabad is not your typical tourist spot. It is most known as a technology hub which means that many international technological companies have a presence there. This is one the reasons you won’t see fakirs, sadhus, cows, elephants, tigers or monkeys mentioned here. I arrived in Hyderabad in the middle of the night. A driver, who we may call Amit, was waiting for me.

Stevens Creek County Park

I currently live in the middle of Silicon Valley which is pretty much a suburban area that spans across multiple cities. However if you grab your bike and ride just a few kilometers south you will quickly find yourself surrounded by nature. Last week we did precisely that and we ended up in Stevens Creek County Park. Stevens Creek County Park is located a couple of kilometers south of Cupertino and it shares name with the trail that takes me to work every day, Stevens Creek trail.

Clarion Alley

A few months ago while wandering around the Mission District in San Francisco we stumbled upon Clarion Alley, a small street full of murals. Here are some of them.   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10  

A glimpse of nature near the bay

A few days ago we went biking near San Francisco bay, north of Mountain View and Sunnyvale. It was already late November but this part of California has a wonderful weather. What follows is part of what we saw during that ride. At least in this area of California there is also a strong culture of health. During the week and on weekends I can see people of all ages and nationalities biking, running, jogging or walking their dogs at any time.

A tale of signs

After more than two months living in the US and with the big things out of the way I’m starting to have time to find the more subtle differences between the US and Europe. This post is a collection of signs that I saw yesterday while I was photowalking through San Francisco with Loes. Does this imply that kids may randomly start flying around and hitting innocent cars? Does it mean that you have to be careful because there are kids playing around?