Holding both American and Swiss passports has become more of a hindrance than a priviledge. Besides having to file and pay taxes in two countries, I can only think of four possible advantages:
- You can breeze through airport immigration lines at both ends;
- you can buy real estate in either country without too much trouble; and
- you can work in both countries as well as throughout the EU.
When my daughter was in the first grade, she was expected to show up at a sports day competition at her school scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. I got her there at 8:30 a.m., only to realize that the other children had already been divided into groups and had already begun their warm-up exercises. For the next 10-15 minutes, my visibly upset daughter and I watched her classmates run and jump, while waiting for the teacher to assign my daughter to a group.
I was so angry. I HAD been on time. I had known about the Swiss and their reputation for being as punctual as their best watches. But that day, I found out that:
To be early means to be on time;
To be on time means to be late; and
To be LATE is inexcusable.
So, here in the German part of Switzerland, it is normal and expected to be early to a meeting, dinner, or concert. Don't forget: If you have a meeting at 9:00 a.m., the Swiss will arrive at 8:45 a.m. and business will begin at 9:00 a.m. on-the-dot.