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  #41  
Old 15.02.2021, 14:10
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Re: Swiss Blocking

Wait until a second checkout opens at the supermarket when there a long line at the first one...suddenly the same people can move faster than a cheetah.
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  #42  
Old 15.02.2021, 14:30
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Re: Swiss Blocking

My favourite blocking memory was cycling around the Greifensee last year where there is a fine wide cycle track most the way around. On my way east out of Schwerzenbach where the track is about 2.6m there was some construction bollards around a manhole cover, blocking about half the track, and on that remaining bit of the space a couple had decided to stop and have a chat.
I slowed down and shouted a few times and they did the typical "angry startled" face, I suppose I could have hopped down onto the road, but between my fat arse and the drop, I don't think my skinny little tyres felt like more abuse. Reminds me that I should reattach the bell to my bike.
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  #43  
Old 15.02.2021, 14:33
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Wait until a second checkout opens at the supermarket when there a long line at the first one...suddenly the same people can move faster than a cheetah.
and then watch their faces when they discover the checkout wasn't actually re-opening but that the lady was just retrieving some paperwork. And that thanks to them, us slow ones have suddenly advanced 5 places in the queue.
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  #44  
Old 15.02.2021, 14:41
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Wait until a second checkout opens at the supermarket when there a long line at the first one...suddenly the same people can move faster than a cheetah.

that's me - i'm not boasting but i have a sixth sense for the opening of a new checkout..
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  #45  
Old 15.02.2021, 14:43
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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that's me - i'm not boasting but i have a sixth sense for the opening of a new checkout..
Another perk of the force?
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  #46  
Old 15.02.2021, 15:00
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Re: Swiss Blocking

The Swiss way of blocking is particularly terrible if you are a runner ... you have to go at off hours if you want to avoid wanting to purposefully shove people off of your path.

I really don't get it, they see me jogging from a far away distance, and they don't budge. Grrrrr
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  #47  
Old 15.02.2021, 15:28
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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and then watch their faces when they discover the checkout wasn't actually re-opening but that the lady was just retrieving some paperwork. And that thanks to them, us slow ones have suddenly advanced 5 places in the queue.
At Lidl Wintethur the staff seems to love those faces. They keep announcing "check out 1 is now open" ..... give it two minutes it will be "check out 1 is now closed, check out 3 is now open" .... "check out 3 is now closed" .... and so on.

I don't fall for this shit, I just stick to what ever check out I landed on. Still, it is extremely strange and a Lidl Winterthur-Töss thing, it seems.
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  #48  
Old 15.02.2021, 15:55
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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The Swiss way of blocking is particularly terrible if you are a runner ... you have to go at off hours if you want to avoid wanting to purposefully shove people off of your path.

I really don't get it, they see me jogging from a far away distance, and they don't budge. Grrrrr
Agreed. Sometimes at my local 400m running track, I've had:
* People just stop running in lane 1 and stand there or chat
* A group of other runners who are warming up, just standing in the first two lanes
* Women with strollers and kids walking the opposite way towards me in lane 1
* Kids who are walking across the track make zero adjustment for an oncoming runner.
* Footballers stand in track 1 doing kick ups, with a full sized football field right next to them

I mean, sometimes when I see people there, I am literally waiting for these things to happen. At least it takes my mind of the teens always there smoking weed, which can be smelled from the far side of the track in the right conditions.
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  #49  
Old 15.02.2021, 16:18
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Re: Swiss Blocking

Oh gosh the kids ... I remember when one turned around and ran directly into me & a mother yelled at me like it was my fault.
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  #50  
Old 15.02.2021, 18:15
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Agreed. Sometimes at my local 400m running track, I've had:
* People just stop running in lane 1 and stand there or chat
* A group of other runners who are warming up, just standing in the first two lanes
* Women with strollers and kids walking the opposite way towards me in lane 1
* Kids who are walking across the track make zero adjustment for an oncoming runner.
* Footballers stand in track 1 doing kick ups, with a full sized football field right next to them
.
The Swiss way when someone is blocking:

Loudly say "Excuse" and wait til they have let you through.
Those who have to move may seem indignant at first but they'll promptly forget the incident as it's just part of the culture.

Last edited by olygirl; 15.02.2021 at 20:58.
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  #51  
Old 15.02.2021, 19:05
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Re: Swiss Blocking

The Swiss blocking is something to get used to, but I don't mind so much because usually it happens because the blockers are absent minded or unaware.

The ones I hate are the blockers who do it purposely. I have not experienced it as bad as when I lived in the UK. It is usually in a queue, or at an entrance to something, and one person who is ahead of friends/family blocking the way until the rest of the group arrives. Sorry, I am taught that if your whole entourage is not there, then you are not there. I know you are there first and have the right to be first in the queue, and I do say, "please, after you", but why block it if there is no one else in the queue and you are not going in?

I had the same experience when skiing recently. I skied up to the chairlift, and this Englishman held his arm up to block me and others to let his wife and children catch up, and they were still some way away. That's ok if there are lots of people in the queue, but there was no one ahead of him so I tried to manoeuvre around him, but he asked me "where the f**k do you think you are going?". In the mean time, a few chairlifts went up empty and he's just taught his kids some nice words.
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  #52  
Old 15.02.2021, 19:25
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Re: Swiss Blocking

I've actually noticed something a bit different, in which there are some people who move into my path when I'm walking along doing something on my phone.

Seriously, at least five times a month there will be somebody walking towards me on the footpath, and we're not on a collision course, and they will cross to my side of the path to get in my way. A few times they've even adjusted back after I've switched to the now-free side of the path, to remain in my way. It's also happened a few times while I've been reading a book while walking ...

I mean, I do have a certain animal magnetism, but I didn't think it was that strong!
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  #53  
Old 16.02.2021, 07:24
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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I've actually noticed something a bit different, in which there are some people who move into my path when I'm walking along doing something on my phone.

Seriously, at least five times a month there will be somebody walking towards me on the footpath, and we're not on a collision course, and they will cross to my side of the path to get in my way. A few times they've even adjusted back after I've switched to the now-free side of the path, to remain in my way. It's also happened a few times while I've been reading a book while walking ...

I mean, I do have a certain animal magnetism, but I didn't think it was that strong!

this reminds me of that awful thing we all do, when we see someone approaching and you know you need to step left or right and vice versa and for some reason you always steer the same side and I end up looking like i want to crash into this person...is there is term for this? also is there a term for waving at someone you think you recognize in the distance and then it turns out it is just a stranger? asking for a friend....
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  #54  
Old 16.02.2021, 10:41
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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this reminds me of that awful thing we all do, when we see someone approaching and you know you need to step left or right and vice versa and for some reason you always steer the same side and I end up looking like i want to crash into this person...is there is term for this? also is there a term for waving at someone you think you recognize in the distance and then it turns out it is just a stranger? asking for a friend....
Sometimes you can avoid that by just stopping for a moment and waiting for the other person to step first so you can see which direction they take.

As for waiving...don't worry, most likely people don't even notice or if they do, they're convinced you're waiving at someone walking behind them.

Most of the street drama is in our head.


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My apologies as I am late to this thread... And I have to say, I find the comments here very funny. In 30 plus years as expats (actually 25 of which have been as locals ) we have lived in 5 different countries other than the US: England, Netherlands, Australia, Singapore and now Switzerland.

In our view, by far the most egregious country regarding "blocking" is Singapore and then some. Until one lives or visits there, you cannot imagine the amount of blocking we experienced.

We have been here coming up on 4 years living in Switzerland and reside in Zurich (very close to the city center) and my OH and I have never even registered that blocking exists here. THAT is how bad "blocking" was in Singapore. I kid you not
Well, you know EF by now, don't you? The art of exaggerating and all that.
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  #55  
Old 16.02.2021, 11:03
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Sometimes you can avoid that by just stopping for a moment and waiting for the other person to step first so you can see which direction they take.

As for waiving...don't worry, most likely people don't even notice or if they do, they're convinced you're waiving at someone walking behind them.

Most of the street drama is in our head.


Well, you know EF by now, don't you? The art of exaggerating and all that.


Street drama lol. Good tip about not bumping into someone. I thought of one more. When I first came here many years back I of course learnt to greet everyone with "gruezi"
However when I go for a walk in the countryside or when I'm jogging sometimes you can't greet everyone. I remember the one time I missed saying it as I was jogging by a dog walker, he was obviously offended as he doubled back to catch up with me, just to bark "gruezi!" in my face....jeez...
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  #56  
Old 16.02.2021, 11:41
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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The Swiss way of blocking is particularly terrible if you are a runner ... you have to go at off hours if you want to avoid wanting to purposefully shove people off of your path.

I really don't get it, they see me jogging from a far away distance, and they don't budge. Grrrrr
I enforce a strict "Rechtsverkehr" regime. We use the right side of the road, so we should also use the right side of the path and only use the left side to overtake. On the whole, people seem to adhere to the same approach.

ETA to make explicit what common sense would consider as being implied: Obviously, the opposite applies in situations where pedestrians need to keep an eye on cars, e.g. where you have to walk on the side of a road with no path, the path next to the road is narrow or there is no clear physical differentiation between the road and the path, such as a kerb, meaning inattentive drivers could potentially swerve on to the path without noticing. In these situations, you walk where you can safely keep an eye on the traffic, which tends to be the left. The "always keep right" rule applies to situations on normal footpaths.

Last edited by Kittster; 16.02.2021 at 13:20.
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  #57  
Old 16.02.2021, 11:51
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Street drama lol. Good tip about not bumping into someone. I thought of one more. When I first came here many years back I of course learnt to greet everyone with "gruezi"
However when I go for a walk in the countryside or when I'm jogging sometimes you can't greet everyone. I remember the one time I missed saying it as I was jogging by a dog walker, he was obviously offended as he doubled back to catch up with me, just to bark "gruezi!" in my face....jeez...


Wow. No comment.
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  #58  
Old 16.02.2021, 12:03
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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I enforce a strict "Rechtsverkehr" regime. We use the right side of the road, so we should also use the right side of the path and only use the left side to overtake. On the whole, people seem to adhere to the same approach.
Only problem being that some people are taught to walk against oncoming traffic so you're more likely to see them and less likely to be suprised by cars coming from behind.
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Old 16.02.2021, 12:19
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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I had the same experience when skiing recently. I skied up to the chairlift, and this Englishman held his arm up to block me and others to let his wife and children catch up, and they were still some way away. That's ok if there are lots of people in the queue, but there was no one ahead of him so I tried to manoeuvre around him, but he asked me "where the f**k do you think you are going?". In the mean time, a few chairlifts went up empty and he's just taught his kids some nice words.
So this has 0 to do with "Swiss blocking".
Just the random guy being an idiot.
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Old 16.02.2021, 13:10
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Re: Swiss Blocking

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Only problem being that some people are taught to walk against oncoming traffic so you're more likely to see them and less likely to be suprised by cars coming from behind.
This makes sense on narrow paths right next to a road or where there is no real path next to a road. It is also what I do and I hope everyone else does.

However, we are talking about something different here, people crossing each other on normal width footpaths, especially those where there are no cars anywhere near.

I shall make the implicit common sense exception explicit though, just in case.
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