Michaela Merz


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Journey to New York


I’m a pro at airport check-ins. No liquids, no forgotten keys in my trouser pocket. As the lady at customs told me that I have a pocketknife in my backpack I thought she was kidding me. As she added that she didn’t mind, but that on the way back I should put it in my suitcase I was 100% certain that she was joking. No customs lets you enter the aircraft with a pocketknife!

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What’s important in life


I was flying home and arrived at the airport a little too early. As it was midday, I went into the airport canteen, which is also open to visitors. I placed my small case by a free table and went to fetch my beloved cucumber salad. When I came back, an old man was seated at my table and wanted to start his lunch.

We greeted each other, wished each other an enjoyable meal and began eating. One word led to another and soon we were deep in an interesting conversation. I asked him, if I were a powerful fairy and he could have a wish, what would be his wish. Continue reading


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How I got kidnapped in New York


Every now and then I am in New York and working there. I like being in this city. It is full, loud, lively, dynamic and very inspiring. Every time I have a jetlag and thus go running at four o’clock in the morning. I cannot sleep any longer and until now I have not found any trick how to get in control of the time differences between the continents and my biological clock. Continue reading


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Delayed train


As a student I earned my money as a travel guide. I welcomed a group of foreign tourists, took care that accommodation, meals and the other programme went according to plan. Prior to the arrival of the group I checked again all the details and was responsible for their well-being and satisfaction. Continue reading


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In 20 minutes to the airport and return


My father had come to visit me. A gentleman over the age of 70 without any knowledge of foreign languages, not really used to fly. Instead a true gentleman, one of the kind which is in danger of extinction. He keeps the door open so that a woman can enter, he holds a woman’s coat for her to put on and he carries bags, the suitcase, and the shopping bags, as representative of the strong sex. I appreciate and enjoy it very much. Continue reading


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A day in Milano


I did not want to go by train because I cannot work in the train. The flight to Milano is short, the airport clean and clearly laid out. However I am not willing to pay EUR 90 for a taxi drive to the city, the train ticket Zurich-Milano costs less. So I take the train. It is difficult to buy a ticket because of the 4 ticket machines, two don’t work. The queues are accordingly long and I miss my connection. Continue reading


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Strike in Lisbon


I had an exciting day ahead of me. In the afternoon I should meet the Portuguese VAT authorities to discuss their new measure for enhancing tax honesty and from 5 to 7 pm I had a lecture at the “Universidade Catolica Portuguesa Escola de Lisboa” on compliance efficiency. I was really looking forward to both events. Continue reading