Market day in Forcalquier, France

We loved visiting the medieval town of Forcalquier in France’s Provence region on its bustling market day. Forcalquier is in eastern Provence, to the north of the larger town of Manosque. We visited on market day, which is a busy and bustling time for what must otherwise be a sleepy town. Forcalquier’s heyday was back in…

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More beach reading

I’ve already written about my first beach visit-beach reading session of this spring, back in April after my younger son’s running race on the seaside near Rome. But somehow, it never seems ‘official’ to me until I visit the seaside town of Sperlonga, south of Rome. Finally, last weekend I managed to get there for…

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Books and more in Banon, France

We loved discovering this pretty, medieval town in  the French region of Alpes de Haute Provence, in eastern Provence. We had already discovered western Provence’s Luberon Valley on an earlier trip, but on our visit last summer we based ourselves in the eastern town of Reillane and explored the nearby region. There are still plenty…

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Why women’s stories are so engaging

“I deem as heroic those who have the harder task, face it unflinchingly and live. In this world women do that.” —James Salter How can I not love this quote by American novelist and short story writer James Salter (1925-2015)? I’ve always been a great reader, and grew up reading all the (mostly male-authored) classics.…

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A birds’ eye view of Gent, Belgium

I’ve already written about the visit with my youngest son to visit the charming, medieval town of Ghent, in Belgium. It was my first time in that picture-perfect town, which was rendered even more beautiful by the warm spring sunshine. My son and I did what we always do when we visit a new town…

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Avoid regrets in life – write!

“If I don’t write I feel, well, a kind of remorse, no?” —Jorge Luis Borges I love these wise words by Argentine poet Jorge Luis Borges (1899-1986). And if there are any fighting words to pull a writer back from the abyss of endless procrastination and back on the path of productive writing, these seem…

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Hello World

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc maximus, nulla ut commodo sagittis, sapien dui mattis dui, non pulvinar lorem felis nec erat. Aliquam egestas, velit at condimentum placerat, sem sapien laoreet mauris, dictum porttitor lacus est nec enim. Vivamus feugiat elit lorem, eu porttitor ante ultrices id. Phasellus suscipit tellus ante, nec dignissim…

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Basking in the spring sunshine in Gent/Gand, Belgium

On a recent trip to Brussels with my younger son, we took advantage of the spectacular spring weather to make a day trip to a Flemish city I’d never visited – Gent in Flemish, Gand in French. It’s only a short train trip from Brussels’ Central Station. Of course, the advantage of tiny Belgium is…

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Book review: The Dinner

I had never heard of Herman Koch’s novel The Dinner before picking it up in a bookstore. I admit I was attracted by the cover and the interesting back cover description, and I’m so happy I took a chance on this novel, since I was very quickly engrossed in this disturbing tale. Originally published in…

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Scaling Europe’s largest sand dune – in France

Last summer on holiday in France’s Aquitaine region, I couldn’t miss the chance to visit the Dune du Pyla. I’d long been curious to visit Europe’s highest sand dunes. I’d seen their spectacular images in photos often enough, but on various trips to France I’d never been close enough to merit a stop-by. This time…

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