YA Switzerland 2010

Potatoes rule Europe!

It may come a bit out of nowhere, since in Bulgaria we are only discussing the cooperation between different religions,  but there is one remain of the Swiss academy that must also be mentioned here. Before coming to the academy all participants had the task to look for a potato recipe typical of their families or countries. They send in recipes for potatoes salads from Germany and Estonia, pierogi from Poland or a stew from Serbia and potatoe cakes from Sweden.. And here are the results, we would be glad if you would try some of the recipes and give us a feedback about how you liked them! Enjoy! Here are the Recipes

Grazia Scuol… Your celebrities :-)

We all had a great time in Scuol and the other villages of the Lower  Engadine, like Ftan, Lavin, Vná, Tschlin and all the others. All the people were very open, friendly and hospitable. So we want to give Scuol a memory of our stay there – apart from this blog. Three of our “local celebrities”, Germán, Anna and Milos were portaited in a regional newspaper. If you want to read it, go ahead, it’s  here, and it is written in Rhaeto-Romanic. 🙂 The whole group was very proud and showed their admiration – in public! Grazia fitg ed a revairs! Anna, Dorotea, Flavio, Friedrich, German, Ginta, Ilmars, Jane, Katharina, Lory, Laura, Mare, Martyna, Miloš, Nicole, Rebecca, Sofia, Slavomira, Tatiana and Tina

Day 7: Until next time, Eustorians!

Since we didn’t really go to bed the previous night, it’s hard to draw a line between where the academy ended and this new day began. Probably somewhere between cleaning the mess on the ground floor and taking a shower. Flavio was the first one to leave, because he had to be picked up by his parents, while all the others left for Zurich on train . The train ride was far too quick, the moment of separating the group  came way too early. In Zurich, those who had daytime flights left for the airport, while others stayed in the city to have a look around. The goodbye was full of tears. We had become so close in that one week that it hurt to hug a dear comrade for the last time of what may be a very long time. So, our wonderful academy has come to an end! We’re not exaggeratin...[Read More]

Day 6: A day to savour

We spent our last day working in Bad Scuol. In the morning, we were separated into four groups and had to roleplay a debate between various organisations on whether or not McDonalds is allowed to branch out in the Engadine Valley. The debate was taken really seriously and hard work was put into it. The parties involved were McDonalds, Animal rights, Tourism committee and the Farmers Council, also, there were two representatives of the local authority that in the end decided not to let McDonalds bring their fountain of grease to the Engadine. After a heated debate, three new groups were made in order to prepare the final presentations. We also got to swim in the Therme and had an extended lunchbreak to do some final souvenir shopping. In the afternoon, work continued on the presentations an...[Read More]

Day 5: There will be cheese…

That day was promised to be the “food processing” day, so we expected lots of possibilities to have something to eat. In the morning we went to a cookery course in another town, where we had the opportunity to learn about the Engadine cuisine and help to make a traditional soup we later had for lunch. In the afternoon we split into four groups and went on the Amazing Race for the last time. The first group went to visit Tschlin in order to find out more about the local brand marketing and food production. The second group visited the Hotel Belvedere in Scuol and got an insight about how it is like to work for the touristic scene in the Engadine. For the third and the second group it was all about cheese: One group visited a bigger cheese factory that also produced other dairy p...[Read More]

Day 4: Another day of the Amazing Race*

The day started off with another tasty Swiss breakfast after which we returned to our workstation in Bad Scoul. There we got to taste the mineralwaters Scoul is famous for. Some of the waters, like the sulfur water Lucius, was a bit too strong for most of us, but waters containing calcium and iron were immensly enjoyed. New four groups were formed. The first group went to visit Ftan again and got to meet the local Wassermeister. In the evening, they presented others with what they had found out. (watch “Master of Water”) The second group got to taste all the waters from the magic fountains in Scoul and later displayed us the special powers the magic water had granted them. (watch “if not tasty then healthy“) The third group went out to explore fishing but instead le...[Read More]

Day 3, part four: Let the history flow or how books came out from the fridge

All the other groups went to certain places, obviously connected in some way to agriculture, but the archive group, what should it expect? You can read some of their expectations and can also watch the documentary they prepared. “So there we were: Five students, one archivist and a whole lot of books. Really old books- no joking, we got to see documents that were over 600 years old. But one at a time. The five of us, that´s Miloš, Jane, Tatjana, Germán and Katharina, were one of the two of today’s groups that were sent out to do some research around the village of Ftan. Or right in the village, to be exact. That is to say in the archives of Ftan where we got to know  Mr. Grimm, the archivist. Prepared with a whole page of questions, we first got to see the archives’ rooms...[Read More]

Day 3, part three: Here you can see how the sausages live

Mare, Sofia, Slavomira and Flavio knew that they were in the Swiss mountains but it took them only a bus ride to the Scottish Highlands: “Our group of four visited the small village of Tschlin which is located farther down the Engiadina valley. After a half hour ride we met Jon Janett, a farmer who owns Scottish Highland cows. He bought three of them ten years ago in order to be able to sell more expensive specialities (even via Internet). He provides 2 webcams which allow you to watch his 12-headed cattle in the barn. But Jon is not the only one trying to make his products unique. The whole village is working together and they put all their products and shops under the same corporate identity. It was quite impressing how inventive the people of Tschlin are. They don’t give up ...[Read More]

Day 3, part two: Vná, somewhere in the mountains…

If they thought that Ftan was small, Vná definitely topped that off: 60 inhabitans and more cows than people. But let us read what Dorotea, Lory, Ilmars, Martyna and Rebecca told us about their visit: “Our group visited the village Vná. After having prepared some questions concerning the farm that expected us, we went off by bus. In Vná, which is 300m higher than Scuol, we were greeted by an amazing sunlight as well as by our guide Mrs Mayer. Mrs Mayer showed us the village and had lots of interesting stories to tell about its past, its traditions and the way people live here today. After the church and the local museum, we visited the farm that is run by Mrs Mayer’s  family and had the opportunity to learn about a different way of farming than we had heard of so far. Her farming act...[Read More]

Day 3, part one: A miller’s tale

This day started really early with a bus trip to Ftán, a village high up in the mountains. We all visited two farms there, both doing ecological farming, and we got the chance of tasting bread and cheese. Afterwards we split into four different groups and we will let now the groups report themselves about their visits. We start with the first group which visiting a mill in Ftàn. So I pass the floor to Anna, Friedrich, Ginta and Laura: “Our work as a team started in a rather original way – at least that’s what we could tell from the looks we got from most of the other participants. Since we were the only ones brave enough to go out in the wind, Ginta warmed us up through a couple of games. Long story cut short, the last game was all about trying quite a lot of weird poses and we...[Read More]

There are mountains at the end of the tunnel…

The evening before, we were told that they start serving breakfast at 6.30 and that we have to get going at 8.15. Jane:”So I set my alarm to 6.30 just to have a shower before everyone else does. It turned out I wasn’t the only one thinking that, so I still had to wait for 15 minutes to finally have my refreshing shower.”  After waking up with the help of a cold shower we got dressed and headed downstairs where all of us had breakfast – sandwiches, Kellogs, muesli etc.. just as usual. We were also given our lunch bags because the train trip to Scoul was quite long. When everybody was done with their breakfast we took our luggage and headed to the train station where we had a bit of free time to look around. We sat on the train and knew that we had to switch to the next in 1,5 ho...[Read More]

Welcome to Switzerland

After an exhausting trip- except for Germán from Spain, who could travel business class due to overbooking-  all participants have arrived in Zurich, together with all their luggage! Tomorrow we will all leave Zurich and go on a three-hour train trip to Scuol in the Lower Engandine. There we can start with the “field work”. Tomorrow we will report on our first day of work also with some pictures. Good night and get some rest!

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