Use Your Words - Farm Store

Today’s post is a writing challenge. This is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once, and all the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the writer will take them. Until now.

My words are:

lazy ~ hot ~ humid ~ rain ~ farm

They were submitted by: On the Border   - Thank you, Diane! 

Previously on The Miller family:

I created a glossary on all the featured characters for you to keep track, check it out.

With David recovering from his partial liver transplant, Caroline is trying to carry all of the familiy's responsibilities, and it's taking its toll, she's emotionally and physically exhausted. 

However, she still takes it upon her to try and work on her "Swiss Immersion" as she calls her efforts to learn German, explore the country and find out about local customs.

"Hey, how's it going?" she asks upon calling me. "It's the kids' last day at school aka my last day of freedom, it's effing hot and humid, I'm supposed to run a million errands before the rain sets in. I just feel too lazy today, so I thought I'd call and ask you about the honesty system in Switzerland. What is it, and do you think there is one in my neighbourhood?"

You bet, Caroline! Board the bus right at your stop down the street - there, you've used our honesty system! ;-)

Our public transportation mostly relies on passengers being honest. Every now and then an employee walks through the train or bus and checks people's tickets. If you are caught dodging the fare for the first time, you pay a fine of CHF 90 (about the same in USD) in addition to the actual price for your journey. The amount increases, should you do it again, and by the third time they'll file charges against you.

But that's not what you were asking about, right? You were wondering about the roadside stands or farm stores offering dairy products and fresh, seasonal produce like fruit, veggies and berries.

They can be found everywhere outside the city. Here's a directory. 

Many "Hofladen" (farm stores) that I know of are not listed, though, so just keep your eyes open. Most have a wooden sign by the graveled road leading to their farm. Some just say Hofladen, others state what they currently sell, so you'll just drive by and read "heute frisches Brot und Zopf" (today's offer is fresh bread and Zopf, a braided bread specialty) 

In the fall it may say "frisch gepresster Most" (freshly pressed cider).

The level of presentation varies greatly. One of the worst farm stores I have visited at our neighbour village was cluttered with hand-written notes that said plastic bags cost 5 cents, you should remember to close the fridge door after removing your milk, you were not allowed to touch the stuff unless you were buying, and even though this store was unmanned you were expected to pay for your merchandise. 

Geez, have they had bad experiences? Also the place looked filthy, there were flies everywhere, and I was not going to purchase anything there.

This was the complete opposite of the two farm stores I frequent on a regular basis: air conditioned, clean, inviting and uplifting! 

They provide a great product range and - very important - resources to figure out how much you owe: everything is clearly marked, there is a notepad, a pen and a calculator. You put in bills in a safe-like container and remove change from a petty cash box. 

C and I went there by bicycle a couple of times last summer, and we loved it. 

"So the other thing I was wondering about... what is that recycling place you posted about?"

Remember when I advised you to separate glass, cardboard, PET bottles and the like? This is where you get to dump them, free of charge (with very few exceptions), and people who know what they're doing will take them to specialized recycling plants. I'm happy to live in a country that takes this subject seriously. I don't get why in North America everything ends up in landfills. 

You can drive right into the large hangar-like space and dispose of your recyclables. Every container is labeled - still some people can't be bothered and throw their TETRA packaging into the plastic bottle bin.

A special section, away from car traffic, is dedicated to small kids. They have their own little containers and learn from a young age where the Coke cans and the light bulbs go. 
I just realized our local recycling paradise's website is available in English, how awesome is that?

Sometimes the staff thinks certain pieces of furniture or materials are too precious to throw away, so they create art: This friendly whale is entirely made from PET bottles. I thought they did a fabulous job!

Edit: as a dear airline friend pointed out, this whale was created for their youth festival two weeks ago. It was themed "twice", and we can see why! You can see more of the same here.

Are there honesty system stores or roadside stands where you live? Do you use them? Why (not)? Let me know down below. 

Before you leave, please go and check out my blogger friends' posts:    

Southern Belle Charm
Wannabe Linguistics

PS: I won't be able to visit until the weekend. Tomorrow we're out and about at Lenzburg's youth festival.