Ramsar Swiss dinner, June 2002
Lamentablemente, no hay versión en español de este documento
In honor of Switzerland's joining the United Nations as its 190th member state, 10 September 2002, here is a brief photo essay on Swiss food on the evening of 1 June 2002.
In the grand tradition of Ramsar Bureau cultural excesses, the superb Catalan evening of April 2001 and British dinner and Highland haggis hunt of October 2001 was followed by a dinner made up entirely of traditional dishes from our host nation.
But with NO fondue, NO raclette, just non-touristy stuff that was very nearly as good. (And, providentially, 20 kinds of saucisse!)
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Since the photographer for this event was Dr Keith Kennedy, most of the photos were of the food, especially (as above) desserts, but from here on we'll try to choose the few with people in them.
Never mind that the Ramsar secretariat has been based in Gland, Switzerland, since its founding in the late 1980s -- it appears that only three of our Bureau members can honestly claim to be vrai Swiss, and here's the main organizer of the evening's events, Annette Keller.
Our other Swiss Bureau co-conspirators are Mireille Katz and Tobias Salathé. Other Bureau nationalities are pretty speckled all round the globe, with passports presently spread thinly over Argentina, Belgium, Bulgaria, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Greece, Madagascar, Mexico, Niger, Pakistan, Spain, Tanzania, Tunisia, the UK, and the USA.
Here at dessert time in the home in Signy of Paulette and Keith Kennedy, gracious hosts for the evening, are China and Madagascar -- MA Jia and Simon Rafanomezantsoa.
Here are some celebrants on loan to the Bureau -- Elroy Bos of IUCN and Carmen Revenga of Spain and the USA, seconded to the Bureau from the World Resources Institute.
Bureau Hispanophones on the dessert queue (above) -- Margarita Astrálaga (Colombia) and Carlos Villalba, seconded to the Bureau from the Government of Spain, seen with Esther Villalba, then almost a mother, now a mother. (Tomas Villalba, 3 August 2002, right)
An age-old Scottish jig before the desserts table, Sandra Hails (Ramsar) and Chris Hails (WWF) -- a north country ceremonial tradition required of all the faithful before big-calorie post-prandial pig-outs. In Scotland, most towns and villages have tall towers from which, six times a day, former bagpipe players sing out to remind the population that it's time for the post-prandial pig-out Scottish jig.
Scoop in as much as possible whilst the jig continues, there may never be another opportunity.
Jig's over! Dig in! Get out of the way, Southerners!
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The Deputy Secretary General and best pal Linda pray that there'll be strawberries and sweets left after the onslaught from the Far North.
Valerie Higgins of Ramsar's Communications Unit considers overloading the plate with still more pink stuff.
Please don't Push and/or Shove -- there's enough for everyone. Probably.
(from left) Montse Riera and Mireille Katz, plunging into dessert
Thanks, You Swissies, for the great food, flags, music with a restrained bit of yodeling, and quaint costumes.
From what direction will the Ramsar Cultural/Culinary Diversity Machine next attack?