Thursday, 20 November 2014

WordPress Daily Prompt: Sparkling or Still

What’s your idea of a perfect day off: one during which you can quietly relax, doing nothing, or one with one fun activity lined up after the other? Tell us how you’d spend your time.

Just a minute, something is wrong. It is Thursday, the “Ready Steady Go” day and not the silly doing nothing day with fun activities. I am  golden oldie and every day is a fun day. I will have to get down to the bottom of this and make a telephone call.

“Good morning, you are connected to the WordPress Magic Happenings Team. Please listen to this message to the end. Today our offices are closed for our sparkling and still days. Our staff are having their well-earned break from the world of daily prompts. If you prefer it with a sparkle press button 1, if you need it still press button 2 and if this prompt gives you psychological problems, take a sleeping tablet. For this message in Shqip, Pashto, Cockney or any other ethnic minority speech forget it. Enjoy your day, Wordy.”

Deserted and left to my own devices. What to do, I am lost for words. Even Mr. Swiss has deserted me. He said something about the ceiling falling on his head and has gone into town. Of course he had a mission to complete, to make the excursion more interesting. My tea supplies are dwindling. My supply of Twinings Lady Grey would be sufficient, but my English Breakfast Tea has reached a threatening level, just two tea bags. How can I survive a day without my breakfast tea? Do not despair Mr. Swiss is on a mission to the local supermarket.

In the meanwhile there is are two rings at the door. As the postman only rings twice, I hurried to see what he had brought. This is interesting.

Swiss Iodine tablets 1

A small plain white box from the Swiss Army drugstore (Armeeapotheke). A Christmas present? My curiosity was without bounds so I ripped open the box to find … another box, also white, but decorated with a very pretty violet pattern and marked “Potassium Iodide 65 AApot tablets”. Is this a new advertising campaign from the Swiss State for spreading the usage of pot (cannabis). Are they relaxing their laws? I ripped open this box carefully and the contents spilt onto the table. Two blister packs containing six tablets each, making a total of 12 tablets and an explanatory leaflet written in German, French and Italian, the three national Swiss languages. It seems that English does not qualify as a national language, but being 60% Swiss, I can read it.

First of all there is an explanation. It seems that this is not an alternative to pot, but an emergency ration to support the thyroid gland (I have one), when suffering a radioactive attack if such an attack would be a possibility in my area. I was shocked, we have a nuclear power plant along the river near Bern, but there are plans to demolish this. Are we under threat from the Kanton/State of Bern? Yes we are a Federal nation and you cannot trust everyone. The Bernese people speak slower than we do, use other words and above all they make Rösti with diced bacon. I read further, no problem. If one of our trusty nuclear reactors may have a problem, then just take a tablet. They are iodine tablets and will protect your thyroid gland from an accumulation of radioactivity. There is then a statement in thick black letters surrounded by thick black lines saying “do not take any tablets if the authorities do not tell you to” with an explanation that you should listen to the radio.

It seems although these tablets prevent a storage of radioactive particles in the thyroid gland, they do not offer protection from radioactive rays. This would mean that my thyroid gland will survive and the remaining parts of my body will glow in the dark.

Of course the Swiss are always prepared for emergencies. The borders to France are lined with French nuclear power plants and who knows what the French will do if a couple explode. Luckily I do not live in Geneva and as said my only threat would be from nuclear power plant on the River Aar which flows through our village. I will omit fish from my diet. I never did trust those rainbow trout. For some reason they glow with many colours. 

A diagram is supplied showing how to remove the tablets from the packing. I noticed we received three packets. One for me, one for Mr. Swiss and one for my son. 

It is true, you have to be on the alert today. Vladimir Putin has problems with the Ukraine, although I do not think he will apply nuclear war heads. He want to take over the country and there would be no point in making it uninhabitable. The Iranians are becoming very friendly and have assured us often that their nuclear production is for peaceful reasons, so what could possibly go wrong? The British Isles have already contaminated their own coastal regions with the fall out of their own radioactive plants, and have none left to distribute in other countries. Who wants to attack Switzerland? Of course not, they want to preserve our banks for safekeeping of their gold. There is no point in attacking Switzerland, where can they keep their hard earned millions? There would be many national leaders in the world wondering where to put their surplus cash.

I can now relax and take it easy. 

In the meanwhile I have hidden my tablet ration to be sure. You cannot trust everyone. One of the neighbours saw me with my secret iodine tablet ration. I am sure they are a black market speciality in Switzerland. You just have to love the Swiss Army Drug Store, they really think of everything.

An important foot note. The tablets are valid until January 2024, when I will be 78 years old and I ask will I still be valid by then. One think you must say for the Swiss, they like to be sure.


  1. I have to admit I raised one, then both, eyebrows on reading this!! Whoever heard of such a thing!!. Certainly not in the UK. Here the authorities would just approach potential problems with the 'fingers crossed nothing happens' mindset. That's very forward thinking.

    1. I just added a footnote
      The Swiss are very good at things like that, I just wonder who pays