Renee Iseli - Smits in Lifestyle, beBee in English, Social Work Moderator • ProCap Switzerland Jul 17, 2020 · 2 min read · +700



Dear readers, the last few weeks I was not online and there was a reason for that. My mother has moved from her senior home to a care home and I was with her in the Netherlands for 2 weeks to help.
The preparations and the move itself and also the time afterwards went smoothly. My brother and I were able to move almost the whole of my mother’s living room into the new room with a little help and on the evening of moving day it looked quite cosy.
The week after the move, my brother and I were busy all week long sorting things out in the old apartment, looking what we wanted to keep and what could be disposed of. Hard work, I can tell you. Not only physical, but also psychological, because of course a lot of memories come up with objects, pictures and documents.
I visited my mother in her new living environment every day too.
But we made it and we hope that our mother can spend some more pleasant and sociable days in her new environment.

Because I didn’t like long waiting times at the airport, packed flights and limited flight possibilities, I decided to travel by train for my trip in the Netherlands and back this time.
My journey to the Netherlands went without any problems. From Zurich I travelled to Frankfurt HB, from Frankfurt HB to Arnhem and from Arnhem I had to change trains again. Hardly any delays and everything worked out as it should.
But my return journey was a completely different matter. Firstly, my suitcase was a little heavier because I had packed some smaller things to take with me. Secondly, I had stupidly sprained my foot after the move. This combination was not ideal.
The beginning was still okay. Kindly brought to the station by my mother’s neighbor, I was in Utrecht (Netherlands) in time, from where I would start my trainconnection to Frankfurt HB (Germany). In Frankfurt HB, I was supposed to change to the train to Zurich HB. Was supposed to …
Shortly after departure in Utrecht, it became clear that my connecting train in Frankfurt would not leave from Frankfurt, but from Mannheim (Germany). This meant that I had to change trains earlier at Frankfurt Airport to Mannheim. Since I didn’t understand the announcements and my public transport app didn’t show me any messages (as it should!), the WiFi in the train was not working, and I was especially tired (i.e. less concentrated), my husband kept me informed via Whatsapp.

In Mannheim my train to Zurich was 45 minutes late. About 10 minutes before my train arrived, I got a message from my husband: “Change of track”! Certainly announced but … Only then it was displayed on the track information which I had checked regularly.
With heavy luggage and strained foot, I quickly got from one track to the other, and when I finally got on the train, it left immediately. Close, but done.
Then came the next hurdle: Shortly before Freiburg (Germany) came the news that the train would not go all the way to Zurich HB, but would have it’s final stopp in Basel HB. That meant to change trains in Basel to Zurich again. This was also announced in the train, but …
Fortunately, this time this change was displayed late but visually well in the train.
When I finally arrived back home, after a journey of about 13 hours and two extra changes, I was totally exhausted from constantly being on guard.

Will I travel by train again next time? I think that may be quite possible. Fair is fair, a lot of things can go wrong and do happen when flying and late gate changes are also possible. And I don’t understand the announcements at the airport either.
And in spite of all difficulties I came home safely, even if it was later than planned. But next time I would appreciate a luggage carrier, uninjured foot, well working WiFi and apps 😉

Mr Nasir Uddin Jul 20, 2020 · #6

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Renee Iseli - Smits Jul 18, 2020 · #5

@John Rylance wow, that’s indeed a nice surprise!
Well, we only had one week, because I had to return home (Switzerland) again and the house had to be cleared before the end of this month.

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John Rylance Jul 18, 2020 · #4

House clearance of elderly relatives houses, and I've done six in the last ten years is twofold countless visits to the tip (one house involved nearly thirty) and donations to charity shops, and pleasant/ interesting discoverys.
The most surprising was finding at the bottom of a trunk an unopened parcel sent in 1946. On opening it we discovered several balls of wool, my mother-in-law had sent to herself, on returning from her posting in Yorkshire. Strange but true.
All of which reminds me I still have several boxes of stuff to decide what to do with.

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Ken Boddie Jul 18, 2020 · #3

#2 The terrible task of trash or treasure triage 🤗

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Renee Iseli - Smits Jul 18, 2020 · #2

@Ken Boddie you nailed it Ken! A lot of things have an emotional value which makes it even harder. But you have to make choices ...

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Ken Boddie Jul 18, 2020 · #1

Ah the joys of moving house, Renee.
What to keep?
What to sell (if anyone wants to buy it)?
What to give to charity stores?
What to take to the rubbish dump?
It’s much easier when the ‘things’ are your own ... but when they’re someone else’s?

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