Normally, you don't move to a new country without speaking the language and run for public office. But that's what my wife did.
Last month, she was asked if she'd like to join the local PTA (or the Swiss equivalent of it). She was sent the application materials in English and in French.
Then she was asked to write a 500 word essay on why she'd make a good member of the PTA. It seemed very perfunctory, but this is Switzerland. She put off the essay until the morning it was due and then hastily typed the letter and sent it off.
Two days later, she took the kids to school and saw her letter, translated into French and posted on the school doors with a handful of other applicants.
She thought she was joining the PTA. But it turns out, she's running for the school board.
The election was this weekend, and I'm sorry to report she lost 14 to 9 to a Mr. Schweitzer. But she's counting this as a victory because minus my ballot and hers, 7 unknown people voted for her. Plus, it's hard to complain when you lose an election in Switzerland to a man whose name is German for "Swiss man."
7th Annual Writing Workshop in Zurich
4 weeks ago