A trip to the brocki...

I just never know who (or what) I am going to wake up with. The humans are a constant. My husband and my youngest daughter who weasels her way in a lot. My middle one occasionally, though only when she is feeling very tired or when she's had a bad day, does she like to sleep with me and once in a blue moon, I find Sam. This morning he spent a few minutes curled up on my feet. Then he was gone...leaving me to wonder if I imagined the whole thing.

It's the animals that are the surprise. Today it was Dumbo, a small grey kitten, and "Jellybean"- a puppy. Dumbo is new to the line-up. Whenever Caroline decides to jump in with us, she brings a few stuffed animals with her. Dumbo is a recent acquisition. We got him a few days ago.

We got him at the brocki.  I know, I know. Used stuffed animals- blah, blah, blah. You fight Caroline on that one. She loves those things. It's bigger than me. I have just learned to accept it. She has millions of stuffed animals. We shipped EVERY LAST ONE from the US to Switzerland. That was an accident. I had grand plans to "forget" a few but those movers pack sooo fast. I just couldn't keep up. Maybe a few will ultimately trade in their US citizenship for Swiss...that's going to take a little finessing. They are all named and inventoried fairly regularly.

We have slowed down on the acquisition of our stuffed friends but because I like company on my brocki expeditions, the kids are all pretty comfortable knowing I will cave in on some awful something they have decided must come home with us. Giant wooden pink clothes pins-got 'em. Sims 3- sigh- got it. But we've also dragged home the best sleds EVER (with steering and brakes), an American Girl doll, and some really good DVDs and because we live in Europe, the DVDs tend to come with your choice of language. I decided that falls into the "educational" category. I never say no. Loved "Blood Diamond" by the way. Feel like practicing my German- just switch the language. I haven't but I could...(I have also decided watching "Hollyoaks" is educational. Usually my mouth is hanging open and I have to change the channel when the kids meander by. An English soap opera with NO social boundaries. None. They are bad on that show. Really bad).

The brockis are like time capsules. The Swiss version of the Salvation Army, the brocki may be at the recycling center or a stand alone almost anywhere (zoning here is quirky). Want to know what the Swiss were wearing in 1974? It's all there for you. Want a costume for Carnival?

They had some beautiful ones. I'm certain the fabrics alone cost double or triple what they were asking for in price. I've decided the one item people who are leaving Switzerland are certain to divest themselves of is their fondue pot. Just by sheer numbers alone, this has to be the case. Artwork and light fixtures, china, and toys. One had a carrom board- I really wanted that board. My kids are just the right age for a cut throat game of carroms. I passed on it, then went back to find it. It was gone. It was really nice. The hazards of hesitating. But that is what makes it so fun.

The brocki closest to me is like a little museum. Record albums, china dolls (loads of those), tea sets,

copper fondue pots. Always the fondue pots. Things hanging from the ceiling. I've been watching a cradle. It looks like it was handmade and hand painted. The stencils are fading and the wood is cracking but I want that cradle.What little Swiss babies were rocked in that cradle? Aren't you curious? I think the cradle thing is genetic. My father recently bought a cradle at an auction. He's using it to hold magazines. Brilliant.

My sister has me hunting for charms. Not easy to find but I keep looking. Same way I keep looking at that cradle. It's down to 50ch. From 125! Maybe now the time is right. But they also had this huge armoire. With the right paint job, it'd be a knock out...

Someone else loves brockis too...I found this on YouTube. Pretty funny.


  1. Nice!! I would like to visit the brocki closet! What is the dollar value of a ch? I am always so happy to find a new story here. They make my day. I (as well as several others) still think you should write a book..Love Pearl


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