Thursday, May 20, 2010

Seven Things That I Should Clean

Living in Switzerland has redefined my definition of clean. In fact, after living in Switzerland, it's hard to travel anywhere at all without being utterly disgusted by so much lurking filth.

For instance, will you just look at this pollen. What nerve to just fling itself down on a Swiss street. It will be sorry. The street sweeper can't be far.

Anyhow, here is a list of seven things I never considered "dirty" before I moved here:

1. Orchid leaves (use face oil to really make shine)
2. My gutter (should have drinkable water in it)
3. Public trash can (you have seen these being shined in Zurich, haven't you?)
4. Sink spout (my relocation agent was disappointed that mine weren't cleaner before I moved in)
5. Washing machine soap dispenser (soak in vinegar for maximum gleam)
6. Planter (they get dusty without rain–no problem with that this spring!)
7. Concrete (for maximum shine, borrow my neighbor's
Hochdruckreiniger. She wants you to use it.)

Oh, Switzerland. How much you've taught me.

How has Switzerland redefined your definition of dirt?


Emily said...

Did you know that you can buy these special scrub things for getting smudges off white walls? I have a better solution. Paint your walls some other color than white!

Chantal said...

Ooh. Something other than white walls. Is that allowed here?

M'dame Jo said...

Well, when I was a kid, rental apartments still had ugly wallpapers with crazy prints, but white has become the standard - not a bad idea, if you ask me. You can do whatever you want with your walls, as long as you paint it back to how it was what you move out - or get the next tenant to like your colors and take the apartment as is ;)

Chantal said...

M'dame Jo

You are right. I'll take white over ugly wallpaper any day of the week.

The problem with painting the walls is that I'm scared I'll mess something else up in the process and get a few thousand Francs taken away from my security deposit.

I also don't understand the 10 year thing. Why can the white walls only be painted every 10 years? I would think it would be common courtesy to paint when a new tenant moves in. Especially for the prices you pay around here.

M'dame Jo said...

True, 10 years is a long time, even if you're a non-smoker and take good case of the place, white gets gross. But you can usually get to have the walls repainted when you move in. The 10 years are for when you live in the same place for that long.

Chantal said...

Yes, you are right, we could have had them repainted, but our relocation agent advised against it since then we'd be responsible for anything wrong with them when we moved out.

M'dame Jo said...

Tricky, isn't it?

My building was fully renovated before I moved in, meaning everything damaged will be on me. Unless I've lived here long enough to claim that it's simple "wear and tear."

Chantal said...

How long does it take in Switzerland for simple wear and tear? Is it 10 years?

M'dame Jo said...

It depends on what. It's in French, but here's what I could find.

It gives the estimated lifetime of each part. So, it's 8 years for paint or crappy wall paper, 15 for washable wallpaper.

Hope that helps.

Chantal said...

Thanks. I think in my canton it is 10 years for paint. So if we had insisted that our walls be painted upon moving in, the guy that lived here before us would have had to have paid 80% of the cost to paint because he had only lived here for 2 years.


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