It’s cold in here.

I did a quick interview with some of my fellow social media participants on getting a jacket for the winter. Coincidentally it was the best time to ask because the room we’re in is a tad bit chilly. Akiko from UNITAR recommended a ‘down‘ jacket, while Elena from OHCHR was happy with her ankle-length leather jacket. Good options… Between wearing animal skin or feathers, I’m leaning towards the feathers. The leather might have that ‘cool’ factor but feathers just seems more appropriate for the season (minus the tar).

The highlight of Geneva’s winter

A few photos from the past month… In Geneva, the highlight of the year is the Escalade, a one-week event to commemorate and celebrate an important part of Geneva’s history. One of the main events is a 7km run around Geneva’s old town of It usually takes place in the second week of December. This year winter came early and so there was a ton of snow around the city. Beautiful yet it caused a bit of havoc in the city and they were thinking of canceling the Escalade, because of the icy conditions for the runners. But on the day of the event, the sun shone through and the city work hard to de-ice the streets. Even though the temperature never went above 0C, it was a great time to walk around Geneva and enjoy a hot chocolate or vin chaud.

The sky was super blue and the steam and heat from chimneys were silently serene.

Trudging through the snow wasn’t high on people’s lists, but the big snow fall was over in time for the weekend festivities.

This will probably my last set of photos before the new year unless something amazing happens and I’m lucky enough to have my camera with me… Merry Christmas!

Winter’s early arrival

Geneva is covered in snow. Starting last weekend and continuing to today, Geneva is being blanketed with snow. From yesterday’s prediction of 20cm to today’s latest dump, there’s probably about 50cm on the ground. As people keep telling me, it’s abnormal for Geneva, which sits in a valley, to get such a big dump of snow, especially early on in the winter season. An “Orange” alert was declared, bus and tram routes and schedules were disrupted, and the Geneva airport was closed till 2pm today. On top of that, more snow is expected. I spent most of my evening last night walking home because traffic was at a standstill – after a couple of failed attempts at riding the bus and tram, it was just easier to walk. At some point in the next couple of days the alert will be gone, but the snow (and slush) will still cover the streets… will Geneva, its sidewalks and streets be ready for ice and the havoc it brings? Aside from the craziness from snow and ice, I love the fact that it’s beautiful (and quiet) in the city… dress warmly and a snow-covered urban landscape is a joy to walk through.

Winters can be beautiful

It’s amazing how winter can be beautiful. The last couple of weekends in Geneva have been an absolute treat… the sun was shining and the temperature was balmy. With an average of 16C, the weekends were warmer than normal and that meant people were out walking, drinking, running, shopping, etc. – any way to get out to soak up the sunshine before the grey and dreary Geneva winter starts. It was as though the weekends were holding back the cold and rainy weather that we have been getting during the weekdays. Last weekend was especially excellent and I was happy to join a tour to go and visit the town of Annecy, about an hour train/bus ride south of Geneva into France. Other than the rude waitress at the train station and a small shouting match in French between our eccentric organizer and some locals, the day was a highlight so far in my 2-month stay in Switzerland.

You can find the photos of my trip to Annecy, France here:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=573322&id=861805383&l=8c7102beab