Michaela Merz


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Safety glass


I’ve used a Blackberry for many years. I loved my BB. It was absolutely reliable, had asmall keyboard, so that I never made typing errors, because it was easy to strike the right letters. And it was indestructible. OK, that’s not quite true, because a few days before my trip to the USAby mistake my youngest had thrown it down onto stones, screen first, from two metres high. Then I wasn’t really surprised that the screen was smashed. It stillworked. It was just more complicated to use. But apart from this single event in all the years, I never used safety glass or a protective cover and I was not so squeamish in handling the instrument. On numerous occasions it has fallen to the floor – AND NOTHING. It never broke. I always observed my colleagues with their expensive I-phones and splintered screens and thought thankfully of my instrument. But in December the battery pack died. After two hours I had to reload, because, if I didn’t, the battery was empty. That is very unpractical and therefore it was obvious that the time had come to change my club.

I was taken by the Samsung 9 Note. Huge screen, notes, which I can make by hand. The instrument was expensive, even very expensive. But I made the investment and looked forward to all the new possibilities. But at the same time, I began to feel concerned as to how I am to protect my instrument. How do I succeed in keeping this tender plant away from all the negative influences. No, that is impossible, but with safety glass and a cover I should be able to sleep soundly again, the experts said. I was quite surprised. Why does someone produce and sell a product for everyday use that is so super-sensitive that you have to buy extras so that it can even survive daily use? To me it seemed to be a faulty design. I bought the safety glass and the cover. And, lo and behold, after two weeks the safetyglass already had scratches. I thought „Wow, now I have bought a poor product”and went to the specialist. The specialist sold me a more expensive and “better” safety glass and a larger cover.

I sprinted to the bus and only in the bus did I discover that my telephone with the new safety glass could no longer be operated with the finger, but only with the stylus. Therefore, I then missed some calls, because I did not succeed in pressing the button with the stylus in time. The following day, I returned to the specialist to complain. But then I could only discover that I’m simply a stupid customer. Of course, in the telephone the sensibility of the surface can be adjusted. That I didn’t know, because in my whole life I have never used it. Now I learned the new functionality. But, when checking it, the sales lady discovered that my safety glass didn’t fit properly. When she tried to improve it, the safety glass broke. She replaced it with a new one, but I was appalled. Why is something so sensitive that it actually breaks in a deep breath called safety glass? I can’t see the logic of it.

Now I already have the third safetyglass within six weeks and the new one also already has scratches. As customer I feel “cheated” both by the manufacturer and also by the sellers of all these extras. Can we undertake anything against it?


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POLAND: Court confirmation CJEU judgment of 20 December 2017


Poland – The Provincial Administrative court in Warsaw confirmed CJEU judgment of 20 December 2017 in case C-462/16 (Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma GmbH & Co.KG.) for Poland.

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NESTLÉ: Indirect Tax Manager 100%


Nestlé is looking for support, please see below:

Nestrade supports Nestlé operating companies in their quest to delight consumers, by providing them with integrated trading solutions in a professional & cost effective manner while offering a platform for business development. Continue reading


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RALPH LAUREN: Senior Tax Specialist


Ralph Lauren is looking for support, please see below:

Ralph Lauren Corporation (NYSE:RL) is a global leader in the design, marketing and distribution of premium lifestyle products in four categories: apparel, home, accessories and fragrances. For 50 years, Ralph Lauren’s reputation and distinctive image have been consistently developed across an expanding number of products, brands and international markets. The Company’s brand names, which include Ralph Lauren Purple Label, Ralph Lauren Collection, Double RL, Polo Ralph Lauren, Polo Ralph Lauren Children’s, Ralph Lauren Home, Lauren Ralph Lauren, RLX, American Living, Chaps and Club Monaco, constitute one of the world’s most widely recognized families of consumer brands.

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TETRA PAK: VAT Compliance Manager PSE


Tetra Pak is looking for support, please see below:

 

The company:

Tetra Pak International is the Group’s Global Headquarters, located in Pully/Lausanne, Switzerland. Tetra Pak develops, manufactures and markets systems for processing, packaging and distribution of food. We produce packaging material at 40 plants and have 36 market companies and 78 sales offices around the world. Every day more than 488 million Tetra Pak packages are distributed in more than 170 countries. Tetra Pak net sales amounted in 2018 to approx. €11.2 billion and more than 25’000 persons were employed. Continue reading


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Die schwierigste Rede meines Lebens


Mein Stiefvater Jan ist gestorben. Er war 84 Jahre alt und hatte die letzten 5 1/2 Jahre eine tödliche Krankheit in sich getragen. Wir alle wussten, dass er stirbt. Man kann mit seiner Krankheit 1 bis maximal 10 Jahre überleben. Und obwohl ich das wusste, realisierte ich: auf den Tod kann man sich nicht vorbereiten. Sein Tod traf mich wie ein Blitz aus heiterem Himmel. Der Boden wurde mir unter den Füssen weggezogen und ich fühlte mich so hilflos wie noch nie in meinem Leben. Ich bin eine Macherin. Ich bin es mir gewohnt, Probleme zu lösen. Ich bin diejenige, die erfolgreich Wege aus aussichtslosen Situationen sucht und findet und plötzlich war da nichts, was ich hätte machen können. Eine unendliche Trauer erfüllte mich. Ich funktionierte und half meiner Mutter mit allem, was es in so einer Situation braucht, aber irgendwie war es alles mechanisch.

Für das Begräbnis, das 7 Tage nach seinem Tod stattfand, wünschte sich meine Mutter, dass ich die Abschiedsrede halte. Und ich konnte nicht NEIN sagen. Ab dem Zeitpunkt, als ich ihr es versprach, begann ich mich intensiv vorzubereiten. Ich erinnerte mich an all die Sachen, die er mir je über sich und seine Eltern erzählt hatte und ich begann, die kleinen Geschichten zu einem Bild zusammen zu setzen. Ich stellte mir eine Geschichten-Collage vor, die ihn am besten charakterisierte. Und je mehr ich an der Rede arbeitete, umso schlechter ging es mir. Er war ein herzensguter Mensch, immer gut gelaunt. Er hat Leute gerne gehabt und diese zahlten es ihm mit Liebe zurück. Er konnte keiner Fliege etwas zuleid tun. Er war genügsam und lustig, fleissig und sehr geschickt. Er war ein begnadeter Handwerker und ein wunderbarer Pianist. Er war meiner Mutter ein sensationeller Ehemann. Je mehr mir dies alles bewusst wurde, umso grösser wurde meine schon unermesslich grosse Trauer. Das Gefühl jemand wahnsinnig Wertvollen für immer verloren zu haben, fühlte sich wie eine Bleikugel an, die an meinem Bein befestigt wurde.

Ich übte die Rede während ich joggte, weil ich in Bewegung, am besten früh am Morgen ein bisschen entspannen konnte. Ich übte die Rede, wie ich meine Reden in der Vergangenheit übte, aber fast immer sind mir die Tränen gekommen. Ich habe immer mehr Angst bekommen, dass ich meine Rede am Tag des Begräbnisses nicht zu Ende vortragen können werde, weil mir die Tränen die Sprache ersticken. Ich wusste nicht, wie man sich gegen solche Trauer wappnen könnte.

Das Begräbnis war schlimm. Offensichtlich kannten und schätzten ihn so viele Leute, dass die Stühle in der Abdankungshalle nicht ausreichten. Viele Leute, die sich von ihm das letzte Mal verabschieden wollten, mussten stehen. Der Platz war knapp und all die mitgebrachten Blumen, die rund um seinen Sarg gelegt wurden, wirkten wie eine bunte, farbige Wiese. Als das erste Musikstück, nach dem ich meine Rede halten sollte, zu spielen begann, musste ich mir die Lippen blutig beissen in der Hoffnung, dass der Schmerz die Trauer und die in mir aufsteigenden Tränen besiegen würde. Es ist mir eher schlecht als recht gelungen. Noch nie in meinem Leben ist mir eine Rede so schwergefallen. Wenn meine Mutter nicht da gewesen wäre, die sich wünschte, dass ich diese Rede halte, wäre ich wie ein Feigling weggelaufen. Der Schmerz war unerträglich. Irgendwie habe ich es doch noch geschafft, mich zu erheben, nach vorne zu gehen und meine Rede vorzutragen. Jan hätte sich sicher nicht gewünscht, dass ich eine traurige Rede halte. So habe ich einige der Geschichten erzählt, die er mir selber erzählte hatte, wie diese hier vom vergessenen Hochzeitstag.

Ich erzählte von der Beziehung zu seiner Mutter und seiner einmaligen Beziehung zwischen ihm und meiner Mutter. Zunächst sah ich die vielen Gäste vor mir gar nicht, ich sah eigentlich ihn, damals, als er mir die Geschichten erzählte. Erst später wurde mir bewusst, dass, obwohl keine seiner Geschichten traurig waren, viele der Anwesenden weinten, während ich sprach. Ich weinte nicht und schaffte es, die Rede zu Ende halten. Ich habe meinen Auftrag erfüllt. Aber danach war ich hundemüde, wie wenn ich einen Marathon in Rekord Zeit gelaufen wäre. Mein Körper und mein Geist wurden von Trauer und Müdigkeit als Geisel genommen.

Danke, Danke für Alles und eine gute Reise.

Bildquelle: berggeist007/pixelio.de


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The most difficult speech of my life


My step-father Jan has passed away. He was 84 years old and the last 5 1/2 years he had suffered from a fatal illness. We all knew that he was dying. With his disease one can survive 1 up to a maximum of 10 years. And although I knew that, I realised you cannot prepare for death. His death struck me like lightning from a clear sky. The ground was swept from under my feet and I felt more helpless than I had ever felt in my life. I am a person of action, I am used to solving problems. I am the one, who searches for and finds successful ways out of hopeless situations and suddenly there was nothing I could have done. I was overcome by an infinite sadness. I functioned and helped my mother in everything such a situation requires, but somehow it was all mechanical.

For the funeral, which took place 7 daysafter his death, my mother wanted me to give the parting speech. And I couldn’tsay NO. From the time I made her the promise, I began to prepare myself intensively.I recall all the things he had ever told me about himself and his parents and Ibegan to assemble the small stories into a picture. I imagined a collage ofstories, which best described his character. And the more I worked on the speech,the worse I felt. He was a kind-hearted person, always in a good mood. He hadliked people and they repaid him with their love. He couldn’t harm a fly. Hewas undemanding and cheerful, hard-working and very skilful. He was a gifted craftsmanand a wonderful pianist. He was a sensational husband for my mother. The more Ibecame aware of this, the greater became my already infinitely great sadness. Thefeeling of having lost forever someone who was so immensely valuable, felt likea lead weight fastened to my leg.

I practised the speech when I wasjogging, because while moving, at best early in the morning, I could relax alittle. I practised the speech, just as I have practised my speeches in thepast, but almost always the tears flowed. I became increasingly anxious that onthe day of the funeral I will not be able to finish my speech, because the tearswill stifle my words. I didn’t know how to protect myself against such sadness.

The funeral was terrible. Obviously so many people knew him and respected him that there were not enough chairs in the funeral hall. Many, who wanted to take leave of him for the last time, had to stand. There was not much space and all the flowers that people had brought with them were laid around the coffin, like a colourful meadow. When the first piece of music, after which I should make my speech, began, I had to bite my lips together till they bled in the hope that the pain would conquer the sadness and the tears which were starting to arise in me. Without much success. Never in my life has a speech been so difficult. If my mother, who wanted me to give the speech, had not been there, I would have run away like a coward. The pain was intolerable. Somehow, I succeeded in standing up, making my way to the front and holding my speech. Jan would certainly not have wanted me to give a sad speech. So I told some of the stories he had told me himself, like the one here about a forgotten wedding anniversary.

I talked about his relationship with his mother and his unique relationship between him and my mother. At first, I didn’t even see the many guests in front of me, I saw only him, at the time he told me the stories. Only later was I aware that, although none of his stories were sad, many of those present were crying as I spoke. I didn’t cry and was able to finish the speech. I have fulfilled my task. But, afterwards, I was tired, dog-tired, as if I had run a marathon in record time. My body and my spirit had been taken hostage by sadness and weariness.

Thank you!
Thank you for everything and farewell!


Image source: berggeist007/ pixelio.de