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  • A Bounty of Cherry Blossoms - 2023

    In this part of France, cherry trees are the first to bloom generally at the end of March to early April, and herald the return of spring.  Cerisier produces sweet fruit, guignier if it produces sour fruit, and a merisier if it is a wild tree in the forest. But they all flower.  Though we will not be around for the cherry harvest, we have been granted an abundance of the trees with their lovely flowers all around Tours, and as their petals begin to fall, they decorate the ground like nature’s confetti. That is until the wind picks them…
     
  • A Springtime Stroll and a Surprise - 2023

    “But that's the glory of foreign travel, as far as I am concerned. I don't want to know what people are talking about. I can't think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything. Suddenly you are five years old again. You can't read anything, you have only the most rudimentary sense of how things work, you can't even reliably cross a street without endangering your life. Your whole existence becomes a series of interesting guesses.” ~ Bill Bryson, an American author who lives in…
     

    Notre Premiere Semaine en Tours - 2023

    After a week in Paris, we traveled to the city of Tours in the Loire Valley. This region is rightfully famous for the many famous châteaux that are part of the cultural and architectural heritage of the historic towns along the river Loire. But we explored the city first.
     

    Paris – Life Goes On - 2023

    To hear the news reports or see the videos, Paris is aflame and being overrun by protesters battling the police throughout the city. While the media are doing their job focusing on the worst of the situation as news media has done since the printing press was invented or ever since tongues started wagging, the situation for us wasn’t nearly so dire.
     

    A Little Jazz Manouche - 2023

    We were joined by my brother and his wife for a  performance at the small, intimate l'Apostrophe jazz club in Paris was nothing short of spectacular. It was a jam session, and musicians walked on and off the stage after beginning with two guitars and a bass, then the gentleman that was sitting beside us with his young son, pulled out his clarinet and moved to the stage to join in. Later, violins and an accordion and different guitarists came on stage, yet there were never more than five musicians playing at any one time.
     

    We’ll Always Have Paris - 2023

    Of course, this title is a quote from the famous film Casablanca a 1942 film starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Paul Henreid. In a pivotal scene Ilsa (Bergman) refuses to board the plane to Lisbon with Victor Laszlo (Henreid), her husband, a hero of the Resistance. Rick Blaine (Bogart), the dark American whom she secretly loves, urges her to do her duty and tells her, as a final argument “We’ll always have Paris”.
     

    A Few Waterfalls - 2022

    As I understand, New York state has many waterfalls. However, when most people think of a waterfall in New York, they usually think of Niagara Falls, ... but the truth is there are so many waterfalls in the Finger Lakes region, we never made it to Niagara.
     

    Hammondsport – Water, Wheels, and Wings - 2022

    Hammondsport, New York, situated at the southern end of Keuka Lake, is a charming, quiet town with a population of fewer than 1,000 residents. Who knew it was an epicenter of aviation.
     

    The Finger Lakes – Canandaigua - 2022

    We knew practically nothing about the Finger Lakes region of western New York and we knew even less about the town of Canandaigua, where we chose to hang out for three weeks. But it was a good choice!
     

    The Lost Abbey - 2022

    It was August of 2017 and we were living in Stroud, Gloucestershire, England. It was time to travel into Wales. Somehow, for some reason the Wales excursion was never published in the blog. So here is the lost story and photos of our visit to Tinturn Abbey, Wales.