Sunday, June 17, 2012

I feel the need... the need for cheese

For me, the holy grail of cheese in Switzerland
I'll admit that, in the nearly 18 months since I've been in Switzerland, there's been very little - apart from the obvious things; friends, family - that I miss about home.
I think in there lies the key word for what I do miss - the little things. Just recently, I've realised that there's lots of little things from back home that I took for granted. Mostly, it's food. Some food habits from home have been hard to break.
What's more unusual though is that I haven't even realised I've missed something until I've come into accidental contact with it, and then discovered I can't find it again.
Cheddar cheese is the perfect example of the above situation. Yes, you can buy what the Swiss think is cheddar cheese. But it's greasy, goes sweaty and doesn't have that delicious, tangy cheddar taste. However, on a recent visit to London, where I was staying with friends, I was reintroduced to the pleasure of a good, sharp-tasting mature cheddar cheese.
I had to have more.
Then I returned to Switzerland where I hadn't really found cheddar cheese in my previous half-hearted attempts of looking. Then I heard rumours that you could actually buy proper cheddar cheese - Cathedral City Mature Cheddar, to be exact, the same I had in London - at some supermarkets in Switzerland.
But where? The rumour was you could buy it in areas where there was a large expat community. It's a bit strange then that I couldn't find any in Nyon, where half the population seems to be British, let alone expat.
But like the Calvinist reformers, Geneva proved to be my salvation city. There, in a big Migros a few tram stops from Geneva's main train station, was a small part of the top cheese shelf dedicated to Cathedral City Mature Cheddar Cheese. I bought two. And the taste? Sharp, tangy goodness. I can't wait to try some with creamy mashed potato, a guilty pleasure introduced to me by my grandmother.

In the meantime, it turns out that Nyon does have a sufficiently large enough expat community to warrant my local Migros stocking Cathedral City Cheddar as well. Why did I not notice it before? Not sure if it's a case of it not being there before or that I just never really looked for it.
So while some of the little things I miss have happy endings, maybe it's too much to ask that I can have everything I want. Because one day, all the little things will add up with the big things and it'll turn into a desire to go home. But not just yet.