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  • Marie

Weather and Second-Hand

This is me, in front of my computer, the Zuger Press (one of the local newspapers residents receive for free each week) and a hot cup of tea to keep myself warm.

With a distance of 4,777 km between Zug and Dubai and a good 20 degrees difference outdoors, I feel like there is a lot more than a change in lifestyle that i need to get used to. The change is not only mental, it is obviously very physical: despite a bright sun outside, I am cold.

Our family moved to Zug earlier this year, following my husband's career change. On the day of our arrival, the sun was shining and we settled for a while in the playground next to the Zugersee. I remember thinking: "Well, i guess it's not going to be that much of a difference".

A week later, it was snowing. All our winter ge ars were in a countainer somewhere in the Gulf. The priority was to gear up and keep our son warm and happy.

Any visitor or resident will tell you that life in Switzerland is not cheap (ahum). As we are running on one salary only at the moment, it is also worth being a little extra counscious. As consumers it gives us a good opportunity to shop responsibly and question not only value for money but also the purpose of things: Do I really need the exact same tshirt that I have but don't wear? Do I need to buy my son an extra pair of shoes he will outgrow in a few weeks only? What shall we do with what we already have?

I was happy to discover that there is a strong scene for second-hand and community exchange in Zug and neighbour cities, particularly for children clothes and toys. While i am surprised by how much people sell online, for instance via Facebook, I was impressed by the power of the Kinderkleiderbörse.

Generally hosted and organized by the local parish two times per year (spring and fall), the event allows parents to sell their already-used items (clothes, toys, books, baby gears...) for a few CHF (the parish will keep a little percentage as token of participation). A bit of logistics is needed as you need to pick your seller reference number, attach a sticker on each item, bring all and collect the unsold ones at very specific times. On the other side of the process, you can buy what you actually need for your little ones without having to spend a fortune, and you get to experience the thrill of the fight, i.e. being the lucky one to find a tip-top piece for a tip-top price.

And oh yes! did I get thrilled: i waited nervously for the doors to open (along with possibly hundred of parents wit me); i restrained myself from buying it all "just because i can"; and for a mere 40 CHF i ended up with 3 pants, 2 tshirts, ski pants, 2 jackets, a bag of little toy trucks, an bright and shiny toddler-sized umbrella and a nice Wimmelbilderbuch.

To be continued in Spring 2018, then. Until then we might be done with our sorting process and I might be brave enough to decide what to sell.

Pics from left to right: mine; C-Punkt; Pfarrgemeinde St. Bonifatius Lingen

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