Friday, June 10, 2011

We're No. 6! and a bit of babbling......

From the recent Bloomberg Business Week article on 10 Costliest Cities in the World by Venessa Wong:

"No. 6: Zurich

Quick lunch: $32.90
Beer at a bar: $10.54
Kilogram of rice: $3.70
Dozen eggs: $7.90
Movie theater ticket: $19.60

The financial sector is an important part of Zurich's economy and the city is home to the Swiss Stock Exchange and companies such as Credit Suisse and Swiss Re. Zurich is also a major transportation hub. Mercer ranked the city second in the world for quality of life in 2010, but such a high standard of living does not come cheap: Zurich jumped to No. 6, from being the 10th most expensive city last year."

The Costliest city this year was Tokyo. It's sometimes hard to explain why we obsess a little over the cost of things. Or why I cringe when I make bank transfers between the US and Switzerland right now - although there will be no more. We feel like our friends and family look at us like we're crazy people with the amount of shopping we do when we're in the States. But when a tall cappucino, no frills, costs 5.90 chf (about $6.50) at Starbucks in Zurich, you feel like you ought to buy the house a round when we're in the States.

Even my dad commented last November on how much food at the grocery store costs. And, we need so many things when we go back. There are many things we did not replace or have used beyond their normal life expectancy because it was just, in our mind, too costly here. So, the US of A should experience a little uptick in the economy when we get to the house. Bart's already made a list and budget - we've been planning this for years. He's already been doing his part.

Did I mention he bought the washer and dryer? I have not seen them. I actually don't know what color they are? I'm assuming he bought white? Or the red? :) I gave him a list of brands I would and would not like and a few guidelines and he did the rest. Washed his first loads yesterday and is very pleased with how quiet they are. Good thing considering their location - next to family room/kitchen.

Where was I? Oh - expensive. I have come to one conclusion however: cheaper is sometimes just cheaper. There are two specific brands of items I can compare between Switzerland & USA - one is clothing and the other, shoes. I have for a few years bit the bullet and bought some Tommy H---iger clothing here. And they seemed different. I started comparing quality of fabric, design and manufacture location. The items I buy in Switzerland are often made in Sweden, not certain Asian countries - fabric and cut were definitely different. Another was shoes - a Spanish brand, Un-sa, are made in Spain or Portugal for sale here (and very nice)whereas when I checked in the US on our recent trip, they were made in China - not so nicely made. And the leather was completely different. When it comes to our consumer goods, sometimes cheaper comes with its cost - products are "cheaper." But it comes down to priorities and what one needs/wants as well. Here - we tend to buy less but it lasts longer. And we buy less 'cause it's the 6th costliest place to live.

Oh, I'm rambling when I really should be finishing the inventory list. I have a week left and I've just written a silly economic/fashion observation post.

We are doing fine and are crazy busy. I'm sorting (luggage, Air Freight and Sea Container), trying to dispose of unnecessary items, getting the garden in order and trying to motivate the girls to get their rooms sorted as well. Bart has a client in the middle of an IPO (Initial Public Offering) and is trying to support us from afar until he arrives again. It doesn't help that the phone hook-up got messed up and he still doesn't have phone/internet from the house. He hops over to Starbucks when needed (often right now due to the IPO) to use the wireless. He's also looking at cars. If he doesn't buy one today, we'll have two to buy when we fly back. OY!

I have to have everything done to accomodate appointments, leaving parties for the girls, coffee's, final dispersal of electrical items, return of instruments :( and make sure there are no Verboten items getting packed. And a Baptism on Sunday - next week, Rachel, and our last Sunday at IBCZ. Good thing I'm still in Robot mode. Wondering when the fascade will crack?


Makila said...

We have red washer and dryer. Love them. :)

I can't believe you only have a week left! Wow. Seriously, wow. I am praying for this transition. Love to you friend.

MoM E said...

Wish I was there to help you...and the babbling is good therapy when you need to escape from overwhelming tasks.
As for quality shoes/boots..tell em goodbye at Tiefenbacher's for me!

Judy said...

It's a lot of work to move any where! And spending when you move?! When moved back to the States we bought a house, 2 cars, a freezer, and lots of other smaller things. I remember adding it up and just cringing. :/