Writers, stop making excuses …

“A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.” —E. B. White In the always brilliant words of author E.B. White – stop slacking off, and get writing! Not much to add to these perfect words of advice. I am certainly guilty of waiting for…

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A Provence base in Reillanne, France

On the way back from a holiday trip in Pays basque, France, my family and I decided to break up the long drive back to Rome with a short stay in Provence. We made the little town of Reillanne our base to explore the region for a few days and stayed in a pretty gite,…

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Book review: The Stars are Fire

Author Anita Shreve is a master at penning realistic characters and delving deep into their psyches, and The Stars are Fire is a brilliant illustration of her significant talent in bringing her characters to life. Grace Holland is a young mother of two toddlers in post World War II Maine. Her husband, Gene, has retruned from…

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Art deco overload in Arcachon, France

I’ve already written about our visit to the Dune du Pyla – at 105 meters high, officially Europe’s highest sand dune. Very close to this impressive natural wonder in France’s Gironde region is the pretty seaside town of Arcachon. This sleepy Atlantic coastal town became a destination of the international jet-set in the mid 19th…

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The art of observation

“For me, silence had always been another form of communication. After all, you can tell so much just by looking at a person.” —Herta Müller I love this quote by contemporary Romanian-born German author Herta Müller. And it’s true that writers have to make an art of this, observing people and trying to glean from these…

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Berlin’s spectacular Pergamon Museum

There are a lot of great museums in Germany’s capital of Berlin, but the Pergamon Museum is not to be missed on your next visit. Located centrally, in the city’s Museum Island, the museum building was designed by Alfred Messel and Ludwig Hoffman and constructed between 1910-1930, and it attracts over a million visitors every…

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On the menu in Brussels

I’ve already posted a fair bit about a four-day get-away my younger son and I made to Brussels, Belgium. He chose the city for our get-away (his first time there) and we saw a lot, but he continues to rave about Brussels and say he’d like to go back. Although we had a lot of…

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Knowing your local library

You all know the famous words about libraries from Albert Einstein. And if you don’t, you should: “The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.” -Albert Einstein When I travel back to New York, I’m always lugging books over with me. Then, of course, having so many English…

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