Monday, 2 July 2012

Farewell Geneva, it was interesting watching Europe burn as you fiddled . . .

So, my final full day in Geneva. Nothing sadder than leaving an empty apartment. A lot of good and bad memories to sign away.

My office - a floor and some bags.
Anyhow here's how you spend a final day in Geneva:

1. Swisscom

Drop off the cable TV boxes and cancel the phone services. We'll switch the numbers to Pay as you go so people can contact us. If we have to take out new numbers and you need to contact me please use email.

2. Bikes, booze and coins

I'm passing down my old Trek 830 mountain bike to a friend here. If you're ever in Geneva and see a purple and green bike check the seat tube for a "Clarence Street Cyclery" plate know that it used to be mine. I'll also be distributing the left over booze and randomly giving two jars of coins away to various charity collectors.

3. Power Co. (SIG)

Head over to the Geneva power Co. "SIG" with my letter that says I'm leaving Switzerland for good and get them to cut everything off. I could have done this on line except for the fact that we packed away all our SIG account docs and don't have our account number. Doh!

3. Regie

This will be stressful for Mrs I B Cyclist as she doesn't like criticism of her cleaning and maintenance efforts by strangers. I guess none of us do, but I know she'll take it personally rather than as part of a business transaction, which is how the Genevois see it.

From everything I'm told and for that matter experienced of managing agents here in Geneva this will be an hour of being told you destroyed the apartment. They will try and claim compensation for the most insignificant scratch on floors, walls or ceilings. In Geneva people usually strip everything they can from the homes leaving them white boxes. One fun fact is that light fittings are not included in apartments so usually you'll get nothing more than a bare socket hanging from a ceiling or wall waiting for you to provide a fitting or just a bulb if you like the prison cell look. We're leaving the light fittings and I half expect the Regie to try and charge us for their removal. We're resigned to the fact that we'll be paying for the usual Genevois repaint of the walls (approx CHF 4000), but anything else will be taken very badly by us as we really looked after the place and the cleaning crew did a great job.

After all this we'll be getting in the car and heading for a hotel on the Nyon side of the airport, chosen for its cheapness and of course its swimming pool as we've been having something of a heatwave here in Geneva. Hotel prices in Geneva have hit new highs as the Arabs have arrived ahead of an early Ramadan. I got a nice corporate rate of CHF 575 at 5 star hotel La Richmond, which was nearly half the list price, but I prefer to save 400 and spend it on a final meal and bottle of champagne by the lake. My exit seems more investment banker'ish that way. So I'll toast the 1% elite in Brussels as they print money to bail out themselves before heading for a month off in their holiday homes safe from the populations left to pay off their policy commitments.

Hopefully I'll be sitting by the pool in the late afternoon watching the Tour de France on my laptop.


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