Tea break with Sabine Waldispühl, Senior Project Manager Apostroph Luzern

Mediterranean vibes at the heart of Switzerland

Sabine grew up by what has to be one of the most beautiful lakes in the world – Lake Lucerne. But she still takes every opportunity to explore the big wide world and finds herself drawn to big cities and small towns alike. Read our interview to find out Sabine’s favourite destination and discover what Christmas in Polish has to do with rain and Lake Lucerne.

Portrait of a woman

You grew up in Vitznau by Lake Lucerne. What left the biggest impression on you there? Where feels like home to you? And what have you seen of the big wide world?

The Mediterranean backdrop and the lake left the biggest impression on me. And I’ll never forget the crowds of tourists in summer or the fact that it was the complete opposite in winter once everyone had headed back home. Our bakery was also really important to me – we’d all get stuck in there. Pretty much my entire family lives in Vitznau, including my aunts, uncles and cousins. That’s where my roots are.

The furthest I’ve been from home is Canada and I have relatives there too. I love a good city break! Berlin was my favourite for a long time and I’ve been there a good ten times. But Poschiavo is in the top spot now. I go there at least two or three times a year. I’m not really a big fan of beach holidays to be honest.

What do you like about languages and translation?

I find languages absolutely fascinating. They are living things that grow and evolve. Just think about the fact that it would have been unheard of to address the target audience of a marketing text with the informal second person pronoun in German not that long ago. But you see it all the time now.

Which part of your job do you most look forward to when you wake up in the morning?

Unfortunately, we don’t often know what the day ahead is going to bring in this job. But I love hearing from grateful clients who we’ve managed to help out by turning around an urgent translation or spotting an error in the source text. How rewarding!

Do you have any funny stories from your time at Apostroph?

An agency once translated the text in the body of the email into Polish and Czech instead of the sentence in the attached Word file. So the client ended up with “Best wishes from rainy Lucerne” in their Christmas card instead of “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year”. You can imagine how confused the recipients were when they read that! Luckily, the client found the whole thing funny.

You know what they say about all work and no play. What do you like doing in your free time?

I love hiking on Mount Rigi, going out for nice meals in fancy restaurants and playing cards with my co-workers.

What book is on your bedside table and what’s your favourite listening on a relaxing Sunday morning?

Right now, I’m reading Nicht Anfang und nicht Ende, a novel by Swiss author Plinio Martini. And you’ll find me listening to Peter Gabriel on a Sunday morning. I haven’t missed one of his live concerts in Switzerland over the past 30 years.

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