October 4, 2010

I killed my house-warming plant...partly.

We had another game yesterday, the second of our regular conference season. We ended up losing by nine, 86-77. It’s always hard to talk about a game after a loss, so bear with me. We came out pretty strong, and I knew it was going to be different from last week because our PG hit a 3 to start the game putting us up 3-0. After the next couple possessions it was 5-2. It was SO much better than the week before. The spacing on the floor seemed more natural and we had spurts where we looked like we were moving as a unit.

Personally, I did not play well. As an athlete, sometimes this happens. Hell, even Peyton Manning threw an interception yesterday. Regardless, I did not travel to Switzerland to play average and have bad games. This will be the last time I have a game like this while I’m here. No more ‘getting acquainted’ with the rules or worrying about how the girl I’m guarding is playing and trying to adjust. I can feel that I’m missing a little something, a little spark, some of my swagger maybe, and I know I need to find it before Wednesday (our first Swiss cup game), and before next weekend (round 3 of conference play). I know I was a year out, but I can and will be better than what I’ve shown so far.

Anyway, we fought back hard as a team. We went down by as far as 18 in the third quarter and pulled it back within six with three minutes left to go in the game. The best part was that everyone contributed to the comeback. Our press was in sync, my teammates shot the ball with purpose, and drove to the basket with passion and dedication. I’m proud of them for showing their fight.

That’s all I can say about the game. I already replayed it in my head 20 times, and I can’t think about it anymore or my brain will explode. So! Before I become too acclimated to my new surroundings, I thought I’d take this blog entry to list some of the differences between New Jersey and Switzerland. Here we go:

  • Everyone has a Razor scooter or a moped. Age doesn't matter, neither does what you're wearing (businessmen ride mopeds, middle-age women in skirts ride Razors).
  • The postman also rides a moped, but his has a side-car attached to it that holds the mail.
  • Every car is a standard.
  • Cars actually stop for you in cross walks. YES, even the yellow ones!
  • The traffic lights go from green to amber to red to amber to green.
  • The elevator door is a regular door, if you time it right you can open it mid-travel. I don't encourage this though :).
  • The money looks like monopoly money, and you feel like you can spend it just as lavishly.
  • Dogs are allowed everywhere, even supermarkets, restaurants, unleashed in the middle of a carnival...
  • Kids are always crying...or screaming.
  • Lunch is the big meal of the day, and if you don't eat everything on your plate your waiter/waitress looks offended.
  • People speak French.
  • There are castles. And mountains.
  • A sprite is 6.50 Swiss francs in a restaurant (I can't bring myself to pay that much for a soda).
  • Everyone is okay with using public transportation; it doesn't necessarily define class as far as I can tell.
  • Everything closes from around 2-6pm in town, with a few exceptions.
  • They tell time military style. I have practice at 18h30 most days.
  • There are very few T-intersections, most crossroads are circles (I blame this for why I got so lost that first week looking for the gym).
  • The month and day is switched when you write the date. Today is 4-10-10.
  • You can't lock yourself out of your apartment. You must lock the door behind you using your key.
  • I have one day and only a few hours on this day to do laundry. Everyone in my building passes on the key via mailbox after they're done to the next person on the schedule.
  • Pandora, abc.com, fox.com and other websites are not accessible overseas. You have to find your way around this…
  • The coffee is like taking a shot (not that I'd know!), but it's served in a tiny cup and is very strong.
  • You have 2 choices at restaurants: you are there to drink coffee or eat. You also declare this shortly after entering.
  • Sizes are much smaller than in the US.
  • People are skinnier, much skinnier. Even so, I don't find portions (especially at lunch) to be smaller.
  • The cheese doesn't taste like processed American cheese.
  • People have sharper features.
  • It seems like everyone smokes.
  • Wine is cheaper.
  • Everything else is more expensive.
  • Our basketball uniforms are girl-cut and fitted.
  • The basketballs cut up your fingertips.
  • The court is shorter.
  • The rim height is 8 ft … (just kidding! It's still 10ft)!
  • There are no over-the-back calls (I really need to get over this).
And finally....
  • My shoe size is 45. I thought 12.5 sounded bad...


  1. hahhaa i laughed out loud at the last 6. Love you!

  2. The military time gets easy after a couple of months. I feel like your blog brings us closer even if we are 3000 miles from each other. I love you hooze. You'll not only make it but you'll perfect it.

  3. Really enjoying your blog , Hillary...stick with it please..I know it's hard to be away from home...when I got married 52 years ago, I got pregnant right away , uncle Eddie was in the Air Force in NH...we had never been away from home...he was always at the base, I knew NO ONE & was lonely & miserable....turned out to be a happy time for both of us.. love NH now...go every time we get a chance...it's a hard adjustment but at least you are living your dream....keep the faith & know that we are all pulling for you...before you know it , you'll feel like a local [ or loco ] which ever comes first...only kidding !!!Miss you & love you,
    aunt Barbara

  4. What a great entry!!! Your list is so insightful and REALLY interesting! I had no idea! Love it.

  5. Hi Hillary,
    Your cousin Laura here, (Aunt Barbara's daughter) I can sympathize too with being away from home and everything you know. When i was 19 1/2 I met Ray and moved here to VA. I couldn't understand anything anyone said the accent was so heavy and if Ray wasn't looking right at me when he talked I would lose that too! No such thing as a 24 hour store of any kind, food store would close at 6, most stores were closed on sundays, all the liquor stores are government run, i had to travel 45 miles to the mall,no bagels, subs or good pizza, it was a nightmare! and of course there was no such thing as computers, the internet or cell phones, Ma Bell still held a monopoly and it was very expensive to call home and cry so i didn't even get to talk to anyone very often! How often will you get to travel home? How long do you plan to live there? I will continue to read and keep in touch, this is such a wonderful opportunity for you, have fun with it! Hugs,Laura