• Elizabeth Ballin - Mental Health/LIfe Coach and Mindfulness Practitioner
  • Cirieco Design
  • World Radio Switzerland
  • Alzheimer's Association

2 copy

Halloween has now become part of the autumn festivities here in Switzerland, not only for children but all those that love anything scary, spooky, or horrible. There is something exciting about the dark side of this season. Halloween, also known as All Hallows' Eve or All Saints' Eve, is in fact the eve of the 1st of November, always celebrated on the evening of the 31st October. The origins come from making spooky faces to scare away the evil spirits; bonfires would be lit and costumes worn to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory the 3rd designated the 1st of November to honor all Saints.

Many restaurants, supermarkets, and theme parks also celebrate Halloween. One of our local shopping malls, Chavannes Centre, are putting on something extra special and we thought it merited an article as they are offering all this for free.

On the occasion of this unavoidable autumn event that is Halloween, Chavannes Centre have set up a thematic activity for children from 4 years old. Everyone is invited to take part.

You will be able to create your own trick-or-treating bag or create your own decorated hat to make a scary impression on Halloween night. The center's Halloween witch will be present with a scary questionnaire with candy prizes! In addition, a stand of temporary tattoos will be set up for you!

IMG 7716 2

Pssst... do you know about La Côte's best kept secret? If I told you that Clinique La Lignière in Gland is open to everyone, with English-speaking staff, and are loaded with a great range of doctors, equipment, and facilities, would you want to know more? Did you know that Clinique La Lignière was inspired and cofounded by an American doctor in 1904 (Dr. Kellog — the same doctor that invented cornflakes)? I met with the young dynamic staff of Clinique La Lignière recently and was shown around.

IMG 7728

Currently, the Clinic offers 95 beds and specializes in cardiovascular rehabilitation, neurological, orthopedic and rheumatological rehabilitation, treatment follow-ups, internal medicine, and psychiatry.

SwissCovid app ipad

25.6.2020 press release: SwissCovid app available from 25 June 2020

The Federal Council approved the Ordinance on the Proximity Tracing System on 24 June 2020. The SwissCovid app can now be used throughout Switzerland. It is available in the Apple and Google Play stores.

The number of new infections with the coronavirus has remained consistently low and should not be allowed to rise again if at all possible. If it does, the country must be able to react quickly. This requires closely coordinated monitoring. The most important way of breaking the chain of infection is to have a thorough system of contact tracing. The SwissCovid app will complement this contact tracing and helps to break transmission chains more quickly.

New coronavirus: SwissCovid app and contact tracing
Contact tracing is used to identify people who have been in close contact with persons who have been infected with the coronavirus. The SwissCovid app supports this process: it establishes whether we have been in close physical contact with an infected person. In this way, we can break the chains of transmission.

SwissCovid app helps to break transmission chains more quickly
The SwissCovid app for mobile phones (Android/iPhone) will help to contain the new coronavirus. It complements the conventional contact tracing carried out by the cantons – and thus helps to break the chains of transmission. The SwissCovid app is available in the Apple Store and Google Play Store.

How does the SwissCovid app work?
Install the SwissCovid app on your Apple or Android smartphone. All you then need to do is switch on Bluetooth and carry your phone at all times. The smartphone transmits encrypted IDs, known as checksums, via Bluetooth. These are long random strings of characters. Each checksum is deleted automatically from your phone two weeks after it is generated.

The app anonymously measures how long and how close it is to other smartphones that have the app installed. It records any encounters that it has with other phones (closer than 1.5 meters and for longer than 15 minutes in any one day), as these are the situations in which you are most likely to become infected with the virus.

How notification works

If a SwissCovid app user tests positive for the coronavirus, the cantonal authorities issue them with a code (the Covidcode). The code allows them to activate the notification function in their app. This warns other app users that have had an encounter with the infected person in the period starting two days before that person first experienced symptoms of the disease. When the code is entered, the app notifies these other app users automatically and anonymously.


During this unsettling time, we may be asking ourselves many questions. More questions than answers in most cases. If you are the curious type and open-minded to try new things, then read on.

A few recommendations have been sent to knowitall.ch about Hanna Slisinska-Eckert, a cross-cultural trainer and coach, working with international relocated managers and their families. She has a knack for palm-reading and astrology, "For several months I have worked with people from many different countries and backgrounds by offering chart analysis and palm readings, which I have now implemented as my main self-development tools. I guide my clients in areas such as career choices, partner compatibility, as well as health, education, and finances. By the way, quite many participants in my intercultural trainings don't know about my passion for palmistry and astrology. They will be surprised to discover another side of me!"

Why did you start? What has been the inspiration?
I have now analyzed birth charts/palms for more than 500 clients, whose enthusiastic feedback have inspired me to turn my hobbies into a professional activity. I have also switched from Western to Vedic (Indian) astrology, which I believe gives much more accurate results. Human beings, with their areas of darkness and light, have always been the center of my interest. Being service-oriented, guiding people, and helping them to unravel some enigmas of their lives is what warms my heart.

Have you been working on this idea forever, or was it something that came to you recently?
In the early 1990s, I was told by an experienced Russian astrologer, who saw my birth chart, that sooner or later I would become an astrologer too. She planted a seed which sprouted, and which is now growing into a plant.

I have been interested in astrology and palm reading for about 30 years, but the idea of starting a business only came to me recently. The break from my regular training activity due to the Coronavirus pandemic has no doubt acted as a trigger and accelerator.


Lisa Cirieco-Ohlman went to have her hair and nails done on the first day of reopening for this hairdressers in Geneva, Switzerland. Many of you have already jumped at the chance to get in early or have added a date in your agenda for your next appointment. It is quite amazing how important this has become and that getting your hair done can really lift your moral! A bit of pampering goes a long way.

Upon entering, Lisa noticed the hand sanitizer station facing the door. After sanitizing, Jeanine Kohli, from Extra Coiffure, asked 3 questions. The protocol from the Coiffure Suisse (the Swiss Hairdressing Association) helps hairdressers know what procedures to adapt. If Lisa had answered any of the questions putting anyone in jeopardy of getting sick, the salon may refuse entry. Dominique Kohli assured me he would ask someone to leave if this was the case. The rules and regulations will be changing and shifting as analysis of the situation unfolds so this is current as of 28 April 2020.

What kind of mask to wear?

All precautions were taken very seriously from wiping down every instrument and surface to making sure everyone enters with their own mask. Wearing a mask that loops around your ear is the only way someone can cut your hair so make sure you have one. It is very easy to fold a scarf around a coffee filter and add two elastic bands. However, knowing how hot it would be, Lisa brought in a different mask that goes around the back of her head to use while she had a pedicure (another moral-boosting moment).

Bring in your own reading material

Once the color dye was in place, you will need to find something to do while it sets. Normally a pile of magazines (you know, the gossipy ones) will while away the time nicely, but none were forthcoming. No waiting room with coffee table, no magazines or flyers... all cleared to keep to a minimum of surfaces. So either bring in something of your own to read or make do with some shut-eye — easy to do with the mask on as you already feel quite protected from view!