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France

 
  • Au revoir Toulouse

    15 July '17 - Once again it is time to move on. Once again it is time to reflect on the bitter-sweet nature of leaving a place where we have had such wonderful experiences. ...
  • Cordes-sur-Ciel – A city in the sky

    03 July '17 - The route to the hilltop bastide of Cordes-sur-Ciel didn’t allow much of a view of the town until we were close. But the instant we saw it sitting high on ...
  • Bastides and Beaux Villages – part 2

    29 June '17 - The roads on the way to our next stop, Puycelci were every bit as lovely or even more so as those we had already been on. The cool air that ...
  • Bastides and Beaux Villages – part 1

    29 June '17 - Our time in France was drawing to an end, and with just over a week remaining, we wanted to take another road trip before we left. Recommendations by many ...
  • An Apéro Sleep-over

    24 June '17 - When we first arrived in Toulouse, Jeannie had researched some local groups that we might contact. l’Association France Etats-Unis” is an organization whose goal is to promote friendship and ...
  • Good Friends, Good Food, and Good Fortune

    13 June '17 - Serendipity does and will strike again … someday, somewhere. This is a story of places, people, and memories, some spanning more than 20 years, all revolving around the same region ...
  • A visit to the French Basque coast

    10 June '17 - Saint-Jean-de-Luz – 18 km (12 mi) south of Biarritz and very close to the Spanish border, is a well-protected port that reached its height during the 17th century when it ...
  • Beaches, Basques, and Biarritz

    06 June '17 - We were interested in a trip to Biarritz on the French Atlantic coast, but it required a bit more thought than one might think. Since it is just over 300 ...
  • A Profitable Brotherly Visit

    30 May '17 - A day never goes by that we don’t marvel at something; whether it is being surrounded by centuries-old buildings, the food, or the culture in general. So, it was curious ...
  • The French elect a President

    12 May '17 - While visiting friends in a small town outside Lyon on 07 May, we were asked if we wanted to walk with them to vote for their President. The opportunity ...
  • Château de Foix

    29 April '17 - We were looking for another day trip out of Toulouse and had been evaluating several options, but Foix (pronounced fwa ) kept popping up. Easily accessible by a one-hour train ...
  • Food, Glorious Food!

    24 April '17 - The question has come up before. How do you spend your days? More often than not, some portion of our days are spent shopping. Read the full post here ...
  • An Early Train to Albi

    16 April '17 - Our mornings begin with the sun streaming into our small apartment, but this morning we had to set the alarm to ensure that we got up early for our first ...
  • Nous Aimons Flâner …

    10 April '17 - … we love to wander.     Read the full post here ...
  • Jeannie’s Day Out

    02 April '17 - Yesterday was a very low-key day. Chris woke up with that scratchy, back-of-the-throat thing and by late afternoon we had to cancel our anniversary dinner reservations. Today, the morning again ...
  • A Cascade of Light and Color

    30 March '17 - Before we even walked into the Church of the Jacobins in Toulouse, I was worried that the clear skies, and bright morning light was going to be problematic. Read ...
  • Adapting in Toulouse

    27 March '17 - Regardless of how many times we move into a new town and apartment, it is still a challenge. That said, it is always an adventure, and we wouldn’t have it ...
  • A Brief Return to Paris

    22 March '17 - Over the past three years, it was much simpler to depart on another leg of our adventure. Since we didn’t have a house and cars, packing up and going was ...
  • Avignon – the Final Stop in France?

    12 September '15 - As the TGV high-speed train leaves Strasbourg behind, the realization that we are leaving France is really beginning to sink in. In total, we have been in-country more than 9 ...
  • Strasbourg – a Visual Retrospective

    09 September '15 - Strasbourg was a great location from which to explore this part of Europe. At the eastern edge of France, we were close to the Alsatian wine villages, Germany and the ...
  • Doors Close and Doors Open

    03 September '15 - Breaking news update. As before, this is a break in the Slow Nomads timeline reflecting events that we feel are interesting enough to warrant such an interruption. The normal timeline ...
  • Ribeauvillé de Nouveau

    09 August '15 - We slept soundly in this little medieval town, Riquewihr. We had no big plans for the day except to walk back to Hunawihr and then to Ribeauvillé, maybe get some ...
  • Return to Ribeauvillé and Beyond

    08 August '15 - Our return to Ribeauvillé had several goals, all of which had to do with being outside. The weather forecast was calling for clear skies and comfortable temperatures. So, we packed ...
  • Two Hikes Around Turckheim

    04 August '15 - A few days after our visit to  Château du Haut-Kœnigsbourg and Ribeauvillé (previous post) we took the train south and west to Turckheim, famous for its surrounding medieval wall and ...
  • A Mountain Fortress and a Preview

    03 August '15 - We have really enjoyed living in the urban apartments throughout France. Partially because it is so vastly different from our life experiences prior to this adventure; the dynamics of living ...
  • Oompah, Dance, and a Saint

    27 July '15 - Sunday morning woke to rather cool temperatures. The weather had been much milder over the past week or so, with sunny days mild to warm days and cool nights. Today ...
  • A Night Away in Alsace

    26 July '15 - Colmar, Alsace’s most beautiful city, is a town founded in the 9th century, and still retains stunning medieval architecture and even its own “Little Venice”. Though it was the last ...
  • A Tale of Two Expectations

    22 July '15 - During the summer months in ...
  • Munster

    18 July '15 - The heat wave here in Europe continues. The temperatures have soared back into the 35-38° C (upper 90s F), and we needed to get out. Where to go? We are ...
  • Voyage Temporel*

    15 July '15 - Strasbourg is vastly different from any other place we have lived, on so many levels. This city lies on the Eastern border of France, on the Ill River where it ...
  • Some Assembly Required

    03 July '15 - As we settle into our new apartment in Strasbourg we realize that it is very different from our flat in Lyon. It’s nice, but smaller, and with not as much ...
  • Nos Amis Lyonnaise – Deuxième Partie.

    29 June '15 - Our busy weekend, begun in the previous post, was not yet over, there were more friends to visit. We had been invited to spend the night at the home of ...
  • Nos Amis Lyonnaise

    28 June '15 - Leaving friends and family last year, we hoped life would not be lonely. When you don’t speak the language where you are living, how can you make friends? We have ...
  • Lavender in bloom

    23 June '15 - This an audio blog post, there are play-back controls beneath the image. Be sure to turn up the volume! Read the full post here ...
  • Wine – a Tale of Three Tours

    17 June '15 - Wine is a state of mind here in France. To not have wine with lunch or dinner is almost tantamount to not breathing. It doesn’t hurt (help?) that in Lyon, ...
  • Montchat en Fête

    14 June '15 - Although we are living in Montchat for only a short time, we have come to love notre beau village de au coeur de Lyon.  Every excursion down the shopping street ...
  • Notre Vie en Roses

    13 June '15 - Three hundred thousand visitors were expected for the 17th World Convention of Rose Societies. There was floral art, paintings, gardening workshops, a fashion show about roses, information stands of French ...
  • Medieval Festival Musings

    10 June '15 - We don’t ever have to go far to find truly medieval things. The middle ages spanned the 5th through the 15th centuries, beginning with the collapse of the Western Roman ...
  • Cascades Chambéry

    31 May '15 - At the crossroads of ancient routes through the Dauphiné, Burgundy, Switzerland, and Italy, Chambéry lies in a wide valley between the Bauges and the Chartreuse Mountains on the Leysse River. ...
  • A Ride in a Bubble – Grenoble

    23 May '15 - With the mountains all around, Grenoble is known as “Capital of the Alps”. Its history goes back 2000 years to when it was a small Gallic village. Later, in the ...
  • It’s a Big Small World?

    20 May '15 - In its 16th century, arcaded building and galleries clad in pink, the Maison des Avocats (House of lawyers) is a beautiful Renaissance building in Vieux Lyon, and home of the ...
  • Annecy – The Venice of Savoy

    17 May '15 - Day trips out to new places are always multi-faceted adventures. Not only are we going to a place we have never been before, but simply the act of getting there ...
  • Dijon

    15 May '15 - Yes, the Dijon of mustard fame. We had spent the night in Beaune, and our plan was to take the train the short distance further for a brief visit to ...
  • Yay! A Holiday

    09 May '15 - It seems there is a holiday each week during May in France. Last week, it was May Day and even public transportation was shut down. You really have to plan ...
  • Beaune, the “Capital” of Burgundy Wines

    07 May '15 - We seem to have gotten pretty good at train travel here in France. Not that we have figured it all out, but we’re working on it. For example, there are kiosks ...
  • Joan and Mel

    03 May '15 - We made some new friends, Joan and Mel. They are from the US, got rid of all their stuff, and are traveling kind of like us. We met just in ...
  • Apartment Hunting … Choose Well!

    30 April '15 - Our travels have now taken us to apartments in Rennes, Brussels, Montpellier, Lyon, Rome, and now again in Lyon. This has given us a good bit of experience picking out ...
  • “Our Homes” Updated

    27 April '15 - There have been several requests to see images of our current apartment, so the “Our Homes” section (listed under the “Our Other Links” tab) has been updated with some info ...
  • Back to Venice?

    23 April '15 - The Medieval village of Perouges had been on our list of must-see places near Lyon for a while. And as we began to do some more research, this weekend (19 ...
  • A Waltz Through Vienne

    22 April '15 - We were in need of a day-trip. So we closed our eyes and stuck a pin in the map. Well not really. Our excursions are pretty much dictated by the ...
  • A Couple of Days in Lyon … Wandering

    19 April '15 - We had a couple of beautiful days wandering about Lyon, clear skies, great temperatures, and spring flowers everywhere. It is truly a grand city. Not much text in this post, ...
  • Lyon, Déjà Vu, and a Birthday Party Too!

    16 April '15 - Back when we first began this adventure, we went to St Malo, joined by my brother Mike and his wife Kathy. While there we just happened to meet Nicolas, Lucie, ...
  • My Terrace Afternoon

    09 April '15 - Sitting outside on the terrace of our apartment, I am in awe that we are living in Lyon France. For all the traveling we have done, even the 6-8 week ...
  • Home Sweet Monchat

    08 April '15 - In the 3rd arrondisemont of Lyon is a small neighborhood known as Montchat. It is here we found an apartment where we feel at home. Primarily a residential area, our ...
  • Lyon … Serendipity Strikes Again

    01 January '15 - We were only in Lyon three weeks. Didn’t know how much we’d like the place and we hadn’t even expected the Fête des Lumières. What an incredible four day event ...
  • Leaving Montpellier

    27 December '14 - We have always said that our travels do not stem from a desire to leave someplace, but rather to go somewhere else. To us it is a significant difference. I ...
  • Rain, Rain, Go Away …

    17 December '14 -  Overcast, rainy and cold. We are pretty much over the colds we caught, me first, then Jeannie. But between the sniffles, the cold temperatures and the rain, our time outside ...
  • Arles

    16 December '14 - This post is from Montpellier, prior to the move to Lyon. The time-line is almost back to normal. November 19th started as one of the coldest mornings so far this autumn. ...
  • Fête des Lumières – Night 4

    09 December '14 - The final night of the Fête des Lumières is tonight, and we realize that we are tired. We have already walked over five miles going to lunch and visiting the ...
  • Fête des Lumières – Night 3

    08 December '14 - Lyon wasn’t really a destination for us when we began our planning. Coming here evolved out of several factors. We had originally planned to search out some warmer climes for ...
  • Fête des Lumières – Night 2

    07 December '14 - Together with our new friends Nicolas and Lucie (a great story that will have to wait til later), we returned to the Fête des Lumières. Though most of the images ...
  • Fête des Lumières – Night 1

    06 December '14 - Ok, we left Montpellier and have moved to Lyon. I haven’t written about all that, but I will. Often it’s necessary to alter the timeline for things that are exceptional, ...
  • A Special Visit – II

    02 December '14 - Our friends Rich and Patti drove to Montpellier from Barcelona, Spain to visit us. That meant they had a car. Originally, our plans were to possibly spend more time driving ...
  • The Story of Brioche Saint Nicolas

    28 November '14 - With apologies to Flat Stanley and Mister Bill. Click image below to view.     Read the full post here ...
  • A Little Night Photography

    26 November '14 - It has been overcast and chilly with some light rain over the last couple of days. One night there was a break, so I took off for a few shots ...
  • A Special Visit – I

    24 November '14 - Long-time friends from Florida visited us in Montpellier recently. We have known Rich and Patti for far longer than I want to calculate. At our last April Fool’s party (40th ...
  • Nîmes – The French Rome

    22 November '14 - When one is able to just get in to a car and go somewhere, travel without a car can seem difficult. For some destinations it is impossible. But there are ...
  • On the French

    19 November '14 - Whenever I talk with friends back in the USA about living in France, curiously people most frequently inquire if the French are rude and snobby. I always reply emphatically, no. Having ...
  • Adventure, Sophie, and Serendipity

    12 November '14 - Of all the wonderful things that we have experienced in France, it is the people that have made this such a magical journey. In spite of the fact that my language ...
  • Abbeys and Castles – The Road Less Traveled

    06 November '14 - As we took the roads out and away from Carcassonne, the massive fortress dominated the view behind us for quite a while. Even from a distance the towers could be ...
  • Abbeys and Castles – Lastours

    04 November '14 - Our morning walk through the Cité de Carcassonne was, once again, cold and windy. Though this time we were bundled, the temperature difference between being in the sunlight and being ...
  • Carcassonne – The Medieval Fortress

    03 November '14 - I was born and grew up in Florida, and just to the south of my birthplace is St. Augustine, the oldest continuously occupied European-established settlement in the continental United States. ...
  • Abbeys and Castles – I

    31 October '14 - Abbeys There are so many places that we would love to visit, and many we can get to via train, bus and foot. But there are many others that will require ...
  • Charlie’s Angels

    30 October '14 - OK, I am getting behind on my writing, not unlike when I was in graduate school. But the nice thing about my blog is that, well it’s mine and I ...
  • Béziers – The Canal du Midi and Massacres

    29 October '14 - Béziers is one of the oldest cities in France, dating from about 575 B.C. It was old when the Romans arrived. Its location made it a major east-west trade route ...
  • Returning to Montpellier

    28 October '14 - “The only thing constant in life is change” ― François de La Rochefoucauld Leaving Belgium on the train, the early morning view through our window was like looking into a landscape ...
  • Normandy – a Day Apart

    12 October '14 - We walked the route to the train station and back yesterday so we would know how long it would take. The tour we were taking to the D-Day beaches, or ...
  • Bayeux – I

    10 October '14 - It was a long day getting to Bayeux from Rennes. It was made longer because we were leaving a place where we had only started to get harmonized with the ...
  • Finistère-IV

    06 October '14 - Once again we woke to a foggy morning, but by the time we finished the fresh coffee with our breakfast, the fog had lifted and we had to say our ...
  • Finistère-III

    04 October '14 - Morning came with a fog that surrounded the trees and buildings in an ethereal haze. It made for a slightly later departure which allowed us to linger over our breakfast ...
  • Finistère-II

    02 October '14 - I left the window open a crack when we turned in. So as the morning light crept in to wake us there was a chill in the air. Not getting ...
  • Three Days in Finistère – I

    28 September '14 - As we close in on our final days in Rennes, we felt drawn to explore more of Brittany (French: Bretagne; and Breton: Breizh). Bordered by the English Channel to the ...
  • Tales of Two Days

    27 September '14 - Home Alone – Jeannie This weekend featured an air show outside of Rennes. Chris had been looking forward to it and we planned to attend on Sunday as it was to ...
  • A Setback at Mont Saint Michel

    20 September '14 - We’ve had a setback. Our travel to Mont Saint Michel was an uneventful one hour bus ride to Beauvoir, a small village near to the Mont. There was only minor ...
  • A Day in Fougères

    14 September '14 - Being here long-term and adapting to French culture doesn’t preclude our being tourists – far from it. It is obvious that we are foreigners as we practically run down ...
  • Words

    12 September '14 - The biggest advantages of being in countries where the language is Latin-based, e.g. France, is that the alphabet is essentially the same. Except for a few (yet essential) accent marks ...
  • Lemonade

    08 September '14 - Quand la vie vous donne des citrons, faites-en de la limonade! Bécherel, Brittany’s booktown, with 750 residents, one bakery and 15 booksellers was the destination of our Sunday adventure. The locally ...
  • The Slow Life

    07 September '14 - Our daily life moves in slow motion for me. I laze in bed each morning with a cup of coffee, reading e-news, checking posts from friends via email and FB. ...
  • Smiles … and Giggles …

    05 September '14 - On a walk past an elementary school playground … (volume up and hit play >) Read the full post here ...
  • The French Twist

    03 September '14 - Not the hairstyle, but in this case the way that a pâtisserie or boulangerie will twist the ends of the small bag that contains another French twist, the croissant. A ...
  • To Market We Will Go

    31 August '14 - To market, to market, to buy a fresh bun, Home again, home again, market is done.” I hope you don’t mind if I write a bit more about food. The markets are ...
  • North to Dinan

    29 August '14 - Life without a car has, so far, been easy. Local trips have logically been on foot, covering 5-8 miles (8-12km) per day. That doesn’t include any transport on the Rennes ...
  • Les Petites Choses – 2

    27 August '14 - Les petites choses = The small things Gardens – places of beauty and joy. Age merely modifies the frolicking. Read the full post here ...
  • Settling In

    26 August '14 - It’s been a long time since Chris and I set up household in a new place. How quickly one forgets all the little details, and working in a different language ...
  • Les Petites Choses – 1

    25 August '14 - Les petites choses = The small things Jeannie’s sugar cube: (the clubs, spades, and diamonds are mine). Read the full post here ...
  • A Delightfully Cacophonous Plethora of Food.

    23 August '14 - Although “cacophonous” and “plethora” are considered somewhat pejorative terms, teaming them up with “delightfully” truly makes the description adequate. Rennes Saturday market is the second largest in France, with over ...
  • On our own.

    22 August '14 - When we arrived in France we weren’t alone. I am not speaking in figurative terms, I know that all the good wishes of friends, family, and colleagues are with us ...
  • Routine.

    18 August '14 - Nothing has been routine for a long time. From the time we launched our lives into this sea of unknowns, things just haven’t been the same. Habits have been broken, ...
  • Once Again, Nous Sommes Arrivés

    17 August '14 - As transatlantic flights go, it was a good flight, long, with little sleep. The arrival in Paris was also uneventful. Well, let me rephrase that, as I don’t think that ...
  • No oysters yet …

    15 February '14 - “It’s easy to get the feeling that you know the language just because when you order a beer they don’t bring you oysters…” Julia Childs First of all let me state ...