Gisela 1950

Clerk Apprentice
Seasonal Hotel Worker
Assistant to Director

JUNE 1955: I learn to ride a bicycle on a ladies’ cycle. To join the other children's play I have to play catch. I stumble and break my right arm.

FEBRUARY 1956: When I get back from a winter holiday with my mother, my father has made a three layered carrot cake for my birthday. The kitchen and bathroom are both full of used kitchen utensils.

AUGUST 1959: My father returns home after my parents had been separated for almost three years. I erase those years from my memory.

APRIL 1969: My friend commits double suicide with her boyfriend.

OCTOBER 1970: I have had enough of Switzerland and fly to Canada, where I have found a job with a Swiss company.

NOVEMBER 1972: After falling out with my partner I return to Switzerland. My son is born.

FEBRUARY 1976: I am back with my husband, leave him again and return home once more. My second son is born – I have to find a flat, a job and a crèche.

JUNE 1985: I meet Karl by chance at an outdoor swimming pool. We know each other because our sons play football at the same club. We have both just been through a failed relationship.

JULY 1993: My sons both leave home at the same time – the elder one emigrates, the younger one starts an apprenticeship in another part of the country. Shortly afterwards my mum dies of cancer.

DECEMBER 2012: Karl and I celebrate our silver wedding – we are well, we are healthy and contented, our relationship is right.