Zurich: first impressions

This is a random collection of pictures and notes, made by me during the first days in a new place :)

The whole spring was a very busy time for me, but the last week of May was just crazy. Even on Tuesday I didn’t know do I have a tenant for the apartment in Helsinki or not. And I wasn’t sure if I have a place to stay in Zurich. And everything was still not packed and not prepared.

In the night from Sunday to Saturday I was packing the last boxes until 3:00. Then I slept 3 hours and started to cycle to the airport.

The flight was fine (not taking in account the sleep deprivation). And finally we arrived – me and the bike! :) Oh God, I’d rather didn’t see how they handled the luggage in Riga, but the bike survived somehow.

I have a quick test to decide whether a city is a nice place to live in / to visit. It is, when it’s possible to cycle from the airport to the city itself. Zurich passed the test! :)

It was +31 in the day of my arrival! I cycled slowly, the sun touching my skin and dozens of long-forgotten smells in my nose. I’ve seen people reading books or having lunch outside, kids playing with water… I remembered how much I enjoyed these water games when I was a kid! And suddenly I felt so happy. Maybe I’m already closer to finding my place in this big world?

When I came back in the evening I was so tired that couldn’t think of anything else than sleep. But hey, +31! I looked at the map and found out that the nearest outdoor swimming pool is just 500 m from the hotel. Unfortunately it’s not allowed to take pictures there, so just believe me – it was great! ;)

* * *

I had no doubts that 19 CHF / 18 € is too much for a breakfast in the hotel and therefore organized a breakfast on my own. With cherries! ;)

Then I went for a walk, just to see what’s around. Soon I ended up in a bike shop, of course :)

This electric fatbike costs 6000 CHF / 5500 €! Crazy price :) But if there are fatbikes in the shops, maybe there are places to ride them in Switzerland too?

Everything is white, because the soil is full of chalk.

Just love the name of this creek – Katzenbach, which means Cat’s creek. Meow ^_^

Then I cycled to Kreisbüro (Civil Registration Office) to register myself as a dweller of Zurich. This day was a bit chillier, “just” +29 :D

Kreisbüro is located on the nice square, the central point of the district. How much I like the Central European squares, full of life and flowers! That’s a pleasant place to walk through or to stay.

Not all the buildings in Switzerland are well-maintained (as one might think), but flowers help to cope with this problem :)

I really appreciate the opportunity to do all things in one place, but in a place which isn’t covered and ugly (like most of the shopping malls are). Here I just went from one side of the square to another, visiting Kreisbüro, a post office, a bank, a restaurant and a shop. What a pleasure! This is something I was looking for.

The registration was much easier than I thought (because of the lack of the information in Internet). The whole process took only 20 minutes. I just needed to present:
– a passport
– a job contract
– a room rental contract (two months was enough)
– one photo (3×4)

After paying 85 CHF I got a paper, confirming that I applied for registration, an invitation from the city of Zurich ^_^ and a gentle reminder why nuclear power sucks – everyone living in the area of 50 km from a nuclear power plant is entitled in Switzerland to a free pack of potassium iodide.

The residence permit is due to come by post in 2-6 weeks. No other action needed. Moving from a country to another was never so easy. God bless European Union!

* * *

Then I cycled to the center. A beautiful way, isn’t it?

I stopped to take pictures of these wonderful flowers and then a lady went out from the house. The first reflex was to hide the camera because I used to live so long in places where people don’t like when you “disturb their peace”.

Things were different this time! The lady was very friendly and told me that the blossoming season is almost over, the flowers looked much better a couple of weeks ago. I thanked her for maintaining this wonderful garden and cycled further.

When (if?) I’ll feel nostalgic about my homeland, I’ll come to sit by those birch trees :D

Bicycle street <3

Here you can compete with the trams, but usually they are faster :)

This is how I felt last months, leaving (almost) everything behind to achieve a great dream: jumping in a cold water from a high bridge and swim hard to end up where you want, not where the rived flows you to :)

City center – with hipsters, trams, cargobikes, expensive coffee and so on. Previously I noticed only men in suits (which made me scary because I don’t want to become one of them), but Zurich is much more different fortunately, at least when it’s +30 (how do they wear those suits in such a heat?).

The famous Üetliberg hill waits me! ;)

Cars stay in the long traffic jam and bicycles roll freely. That’s fair!

What a tree!

In the hot day bike parking by the lake looks like this :)

I hope I will do this after some of the workdays :)

Hello mountains, I’ll come to visit you soon, already on Sunday!

Ha-ha, parking isn’t easy far from the lake either.

One of the favorite streets of mine to cycle in the center of Zurich.

It took time, but now I find the minimalism and square forms of the new districts of Zurich nice.

It’s a pity, but I can’t enjoy Zurich right now, because most of the June I’ll spend in Austria, where our company’s headquarters are located. See you in July then, beautiful city!

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