Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Swiss Fact or Fiction

Throughout my travels and listening to other people, I always get a laugh at some of the things many English speakers say about Switzerland. One of the most commonly known sayings is the area known as "Lake Geneva" when the real name of the lake is actually Lac Leman. Wikipedia has a great explanation on the entire thing. When in Geneva, people say Lake Geneva and where elsewhere they speak of it as Lac Leman.

Swiss Fact - Switzerland is barely one tenth as large as California. It's only 41,000 square kilometers. To give you a better idea of just how small that is, just think of Switzerland to be only seven percent of France.

Swiss Myth - One of the longest living legends is Heidi. Most people know the story of Heidi but really the only reason why the concept is still living Heidi myth, not the person herself is just a marketing ploy for tourism. It is true that much of "Heidiland" is beautiful but it has changed a lot over the last 100 years.

Swiss Sawdust Wrestling known as "Schwingen" is not really known elsewhere and in comparison is quite the same as Sumo Wrestling minus the financial support.

Other Swiss myths would not be complete without William Tell, a national hero who probably never existed.

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