What makes the Swiss SWISS: A guide to the Swiss that ignores the cuckoo clock making facade to reveal what makes them tick.
‘This witty book cuts to the chase and is at times quite irreverant. Like the author, I too am married to a Swiss. I read it prior to a two month trip to Zurich to study German and learn more about my wife’s parent culture. I found the book a surprising and entertaining resource. Time and again I found my experiences of the Swiss strangely reminiscent its pages. I even lent it to Swiss friends who concurred that its observations was right on the money.’
Reviewed by Coral Gables, Florida
‘Funny and very insightful guide to the Swiss. I work in the US for the Swiss. This little book (you can read it in an hour or two) is very funny and fun to read. At the same time it is amazingly insightful with regards to Swiss culture, customs and people. I sometimes give it to others doing business with the Swiss. On the whole it paints the Swiss in a positive light, but also offers up good fodder for ribbing my Swiss colleagues.’ Reviewer from the USA
‘This book is Great! It kept me laughing but well informed all the way through. I found it to be a very thorough reference to the Swiss. Without being too long and drawn out. I particularly liked the sections on “The Bells” and “Dental Holidays”. I liked it so much I want to send a copy to my whole family.’ Reviewer from Kloten, Switzerland
‘The Swiss in a nutshell – Sehr lustig!!! The author manages to sum up every aspect of the Swiss with a typical British sense of humour! Having lived in Switzerland for some time now, this book was still able to teach me some idiosyncrasies of the Swiss I didn’t know. If you want to find out who what where why and how the Swiss do things – read this book.’ Reviewed by N. Cload
‘After joining a Swiss Company I wanted to learn about the culture, people and country (a bit late after I joined I know…). This was a real eye opener and confirmed some of the things I’d witnessed and experienced. Very, very interesting and informative – highly recommended!’ Reviewed by Dr. F
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Links to make you laugh
The Xenophobe’s Guides are all about cultivating cultural awareness. These aspects of the Swiss selected by the author Paul Bilton appeared in The Local (Switzerland’s News in English). Read more by clicking the image below:
About the author
Born in Southport, Merseyside, Paul Bilton has become what is known somewhat unaffectionately as a ‘paper Swiss’. (First marry a Swiss, then live in the country for five years, fill in forms, wait another 18 months, and finally hand over several hundred Swiss francs in cash for the paper which grants you Swiss nationality to the local postman when he delivers your mail.)
After careers in advertising (‘Ferguson’s Fertilizers Fertilize Faster’), publishing and the manufacture of plastic products under his own patent, he left Britain to become an Ausländer in Switzerland. These days between writing, broadcasting and giving talks about Swiss life, he gives odd English lessons. He tries hard to worry more, and still cannot understand why it is frowned upon to redecorate his nuclear shelter himself.
He and his Swiss wife live an idyllic life in the Zurich Oberland where he collects coffee creamer tops while she embroiders car cushions. They enjoy a near perfect diet of muesli and Rösti, but never on the same plate.