As you can see from the photo looking towards the Jura mountains, taken around the corner to where I live, the trees are slowly changing colour and the leaves are falling. Now that sounds really romantic, I must be getting older. Anyhow the weather is really nice at the moment here in the part of Switzerland where I live, up to 18°C during the day. I noticed in the shops the choice of veg is also changing. You can now buy brussel sprouts again and chicory which you don't see during the Summer. I also noticed that the prices seem to be shooting upwards, cauliflower being now at least five Swiss francs each. I don't think it is the bank's fault, but probably the farmers. Who knows?
Life goes on as always. I am still working half days, probably until the end of the year according to my doctor. I have sold one copy of my book, one of my colleagues went to the local book shop and ordered a copy. I was so proud, as I did not think anyone would be interested. Things seem to be quiet in the office at the moment and the management are trying to find the solution to overcoming the slump that may be arriving in the world of industry. It will not be the first one I have gone through in the working world and probably will not be the last one.
And now for something completely different. I don't know if anyone here goes fishing. My mother-in-law had a small aquarium when she was alive, with a couple of gold fish and a catfish (also known as a sheatfish according to my German dictionary). Anyhow I remember that the catfish she had always seemed to be growing. Not a giant, but he overtook the gold fish. Eventually he survived the goldfish and grew to quite a size for an aquarium fish. One sad morning my mother-in-law found him on the floor, it seems he did a kamikaze flight during the night. Anyhow, there are catfish and catfish and the reason I am telling this is because something very interesting happened in our local River Aare, so much so that it came in our Swiss news programme and it appeared in the newspapers. Here is a translation of an article I found. There is also a link to the web site with a film, and I strongly recommend to watch the video.
"Divers in the Aare near Bettlach (just a ten minute drive from where I live) in Kanton solothurn have made a spectacular discovery: a three meter long catfish.
The diver said "I was filming some perch and suddenly saw a large shadow. He was already in front of me and looking at me. I took three deep breaths and than swam around with him for twnty minutes." Alain Bauermeister talks of his first meeting with the “Giant” from the “Bettlach”. The diver has made a fantastic discovery and also filmed it: A catfish three meters long – this was the size the diver reckoned it to be. He has been diving for the last four years with the camera and could compare the catfish with the length of his own body size and his experiences.
Bauermeister often went diving in the Red Sea where he earlier worked as a diving teacher. Back in Switzerland he did not want to give up this hobby and so he now goes diving in the River Aare with his diving colleague Marco Schneider. They keep records with the camera and often show photos and videos on the Internet. In the meanwhile they have already seen the “giant” three times and have gone for a swim with him each time. One often finds a catfish in the river Aare but very rarely in this size.
Impressed from the giant is also Rudolf Winzenried, president of the fishing club Grenchen-Bettlach. When he heard from the three meter fish he did not really want to believe it. He thought it was a fisherman’s story which are often exaggerated. Then he saw the video in Internet and was convinced of its size. A catfish in that size is very rare. Winzenried does not intend to remove the fish from the river. He finds such a fish should remain. The divers are naturally the same opinion and are keeping the place secret where the catfish is, they just mentioned that they went into the river near the village of Bettlach. "