Useful Swiss Consumer Programme – From Scams to Dried mushrooms, Toothbrushes and Tea.

If you are interested in consumer issues and want to know more about the products you buy here in French speaking Switzerland, it’s worth taking a look at the weekly television programme called ABE (A Bon Entendeur) presented by Manuelle Pernod and broadcast on Tuesday evenings on RTS1 at 20:10

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A regular look at the products we buy

This consumer progamme takes a regular look at many of the products we all buy in the main Swiss supermarkets and shops. It compares brands, analyses the content of many food products and draws conclusions for the consumer. Even if you only understand a basic amount of French, these programmes are well produced, can be easily understood and the conclusions are illustrated in graph form or with clear photos. 

Housing, Transport, Insurance etc

The programme also looks at other consumer issues such as housing, transport, insurance etc.  The website of the programme has useful links to consumer associations and  links to consumer rights groups.

The products featured over the last few weeks have been on a variety of items such as electric toothbrushes (their conclusion – buying the most expensive product in the shop isn’t necessarily the best!)  Scroll to around 4 minutes on the programme here to see the result on this particular test.

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Pesticides in Mushrooms and Herbal Teas

Another programme broadcast on February 18th featured the packets of dried mushrooms that can be found for sale in recognised retail outlets. It explained which packets of mushrooms contain pesticides and other chemicals, and which brand of mushrooms was rated the best all round. 

For lovers of herbal tea  another programme revealed the content of some well recognised tea brand names, the results can be seen on this clip here 

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Scam targeting local businesses

This week’s programme revealed a scam that involved small businesses being approached (one of them in Versoix) to take out and pay up front for advertising in a magazine that simply didn’t exist.

The programme has been on air for many years and there’s lots of archive material to be found on their site.  There is even an ABE app!

 

 

Jval festival starts next week – Rock in the Vineyards

Although the summer is coming to an end, it doesn’t mean the end of rock music festivals as there is another festival just round the corner to look forward to. Jval festival The Jval festival is a small three day rock music festival taking place on the 29, 30 and 31 August. The festival is set amongst the lovely Vaud vineyards in the terrain of  “Le domaine de Serreaux-Dessus” (near Begnins)  overlooking the lake. Jval fest 2 Acts include: Dead Bunny,  Evellin Trouble, Poni Hoax, Rootwords and the Block Notes, Oy, Féfé, Billie Bird, Kassette, Girls in Hawaii, and there will be a DJ at the end of each night’s concerts.   Fully details of all the bands, access, parking, free navette bus and how to purchase ticket prices see here Jval fest 3

“Le Pickpocket”, a film shot in and around the Nyon area, premieres this Saturday

On Saturday 29th September at 19:30 ”Le Pickpocket”  will be premiered at L’Elastique Citrique (Nyon’s circus school). This film involves over 70 youngsters from the region and  includes scenes of Nyon and the surrounding area. Jonas Parson, one of Living Nyon’s music and film writers, spoke to the director to find out more about this film.

Adrien Borruat is an eighteen year-old student at the Gymnase de Nyon. But outside the classroom, he devotes himself to his passion: film-making. He started when he was 14, and he’s still as passionate about it. He has just finished working on his last project; an hour-long called the “Pickpocket” This film is an amateur movie made by local youngsters and is led by Adrien and a core committee of three or four people ( his sisters, girlfriend and best friend) under the name of Vol Ô Vent Production.

Adrien told Living in Nyon, “Compared to what I’d done before, this is something new, on a much bigger scale. This is our largest project by far, it took a year to make and brings together about 70 people from the region. We want to have fun while making movies with a high standard”.  With no financing, the committee defined the profile of the actors and extras they were looking for before using their contacts to find the appropriate people, who all live in the Nyon area”.

 

“If pickpockets fascinate me so much, it’s probably because I’ve never had my wallet stolen from me”, joked Adrien about the subject of his movie. “I love everything to do with magic and circus, and you get a bit of that in pickpocketing, you even get ‘professional’ pickpockets who use their skills to entertain!  More seriously though, when I usually start thinking about a new story for a movie, I begin with just one sentence – maybe the core idea of the movie, and then develop from that one sentence to get the whole movie; in this case, it’s the story of a young pickpocket who discovers, on a camera he has stolen, the picture of his long-lost love, and how the search for her helps him get a grip on his life, at a time where everything is going haywire.”

Filming

The filming mainly took place in the old town of Geneva, in Nyon, and in some villages above Nyon, such as Begnins. Although it was mostly filmed in urban settings, the lakeside takes up an important place in the movie – “as a way to give the characters who spend their time in the city somewhere to escape to when they need some calm”, explains Adrien, giving for some beautiful scenes on the lakeside at sunset. “We took a lot of time finding where we could film parts of the movie, and it made me rediscover our region – and realise how lucky we are to live in such beautiful settings”.

See a trailer of the movie below

Hard work

“Obviously making a movie isn’t easy- organising filming days, that and the actor’s availabilities and the unpredictability of the weather, it was quite hard work!  Despite all the different obstacles that came our way it was also a good experience to learn and to get better.

At the beginning of the summer, the filming was over, with approximately 100 hours of filming.

“Each shot is filmed about seven times, to make sure we get at least one good shot. Then I spent nearly my whole summer editing the movie. You normally count one hour of editing for every minute of the movie, I reckon I spent about 100 hours for the editing, obviously some scenes are easier to edit than others!”

Adrien recalls one time when they were filming in a park in Geneva, when suddenly two policemen came up to them- Adrien was sure they were going to tell them off for filming in the park, but they only told them to keep their belongings close- and look out for pickpockets!

“All in all”, told me Adrien,” this film was a great adventure, that brought together about 15 actors and 50 extras from the region, from 11 to over 70 years old. The music for the film was made by a local band, called “Insecure”, in exchange for making a video-clip for the band. It was hard work and lots of fun, and the screening on the 29th is the best way to come and meet us and see what we’ve done, and it’s the consecration of a years work.”

 

“Le Pickpocket” will be shown on the 29th of September at 7:30 pm at L’Elastique Citrique (Nyon) there will also be another screening  on the 7th of October at at 5 pm at l’atellier de Mlle F. (Crassier) (to book a seat for the 7th of October, send a mail to : collectif46@gmail.com)

Free entry, donation at the end of the movie.

 

 

 

“Living along Lac Léman” book is now for sale! – The perfect gift for everyone.

Tuesday evening in Nyon saw the official launch of  the book “Living along Lac Léman”. Thankyou so much to all those who came to the Villa Thomas at the COV for the vernissage/launch.

Photos above. Happy book fans!

The venue in the stunning lake side setting made it the perfect place to launch the book. It also gave readers of this site,  La Côte newspaper, and other members of the public a chance to mingle and enjoy a glass of local Swiss wine, along with tasting some British cheeese from the British Cheese Centre of Switzerland. 

Photo above: the Villa Thomas along the lake side. Note – there will be a jazz concert at the Villa Thomas on Friday 7th Oct see COV for here for full details

There were also representatives at the event from the various local festivals (Paléo, Caribana, Visions du Réel etc),  from Nyon town council and Nyon tourism giving those there the opportunity to find out more about the three festivals and local issues.

Photo above – Checking out the book at the vernissage

About the book –  The perfect company gift, birthday or Christmas present.

Packed with columns articles and photos the book is is a light hearted look at life along the shores of lake Geneva and contains a selection of columns which have been published for the last two years in English every Friday in La Côte newspaper.  This weekly column is a conversation is about the people, places and events in Vaud as seen through the eyes of a British expatriate.

Photo above: left C. Nelson-Pollard author of “Living along Lac Léman”, right Contessa Pinon – editor of La Côte newspaper

With observations on unusual Swiss customs and on the peculiarities to be found in both the French and English languages, it also comments on other subjects such as the jargon that estate agents use when advertising houses for sale, the difficulties of making a fondue, or trying to say a telephone number in French.

Image above – article from book called  “Figuring it out”

With other articles on local festivals, the Désalpe and more, and packed with photos that capture the colour and essence of the Léman region, the book makes a perfect gift for someone who has just moved to the area. It  will also delight those who have lived here for a while, whether expat of Swiss, in recognising  the slightly side quirky side of Swiss life whilst acknowledging the beauty of the Léman area.

Image below – Article from book called “A saisir!” (on estate agents’ jargon)

At just 29 CHF, the book is available to order through this site, just click on “Living in Nyon” book on the top side bar to order.  Free delivery in the Nyon, Coppet, Rolle and Prangins area.  

From  Tuesday 11th October, the book will also be for sale at Nyon tourist office  Opening hours  Monday-Friday 08:30 -12:30/ 13:30 -17:30

Special book signing – The author will be signing copies of the book at Nyon tourist office on Friday November 4th from 16:00- 18:00.  An ideal opportunity to pick up a copy and find out about events and winter activities happening in the Nyon and St Cergue region.

Photo above and below – Selling the books left to right. Anna Hiller Bedlington, Suzy Nelson-Pollard, Nicola Bedlington.

All photos of the vernissage –  Catherine Lewis photography see site here

House to rent in Begnins. Apricot season in Valais

Above: Apricot sellers in the Valais –  See below

A reader has sent details of this house in Begnins which is available to rent from the 1st of September.

Semi-detached triplex house to rent with 5,5 rooms and garden (Begnins, VD)

A wonderful semi-detached house with 5,5 rooms, within 3 minutes walking distance of the centre of the village. Close to shops, schools and public transport. Within 20 minutes (driving time) of Geneva. Built in 2005.

This is a sunny and spacious house of 189 m2 with the following layout:
Entry level: 1 hall, 1 guest WC, fitted kitchen, a large dining room with access to a terrace and a garden.
1st Floor: 3 bedrooms (2 with terrace), 1 separate toilet, a shower room. 2nd Floor: 1 large bedroom, 1 bathroom, 1 small closet room. Basement: a large cellar, a double garage with direct entry to the house.

Rent: 3,500 CHF / Charges: 320 CHF.

Free from: 01.09.2011. Phone:  0788785046  E-mail: begnins.maison@gmail.com

Apricots galore on sale in Nyon  shops

It’s the apricot season right now and the shops and markets are full of fresh apricots for sale. Did you know that these apricots come from the Valais (the next canton to Vaud), and that the area around  the village of Saxon is in one of the biggest raspberry and apricot growing areas in Switzerland? The Valais is also a very popular spot for walkers, hikers, cyclists and for family days out. Why not take a short drive or take the train to check the area out at this time of year?  See the Valais tourism site for more information.