The Journey To Becoming French

Are We French Yet?

I have a case of envy….French envy. Keith Van Sickle’s new book, “Are We French Yet?—Keith and Val’s Adventures In Provence” is comprised of 40 very entertaining stories about how he and his wife have attempted to adjust to part-time life in Provence. While the process to become (more) French was not without difficulties and many humorous incidents, I envy what they went through because in life it’s the journey to becoming French that matters, not the end result. Continue reading →

Historical Walking Tour: Life In Paris During WWII

French Resistance posters from the Musee de l'ordre de la liberation, Paris--Life In Paris During WWII

Books and movies can give you a general idea of what a place and time period are like. I had visited the D-Day beaches in Normandy, seen movies like “Saving Private Ryan”, “Schindler’s List”, and “The Longest Day” and read books such as “Suite Francaise” and “All The Light We Cannot See”. But being on a historical tour where you hear stories about life in Paris during WWII really brings it to life. I was transported back to the 1940s when Paris was occupied by the Germans when I recently took a walking tour highlighting this time period in Paris and I discovered much more about the city that I have come to love. Continue reading →

Renter Beware: Costly Roadside Assistance In France

Renter Beware! Costly Roadside Assistance In France

Travelling can be a wonderful experience when you rent a car. But not always. After 30 trips to France, I guess it was time for me to have an awful experience. My roadside assistance experience in France was not just stressful, but a shock to my wallet.  I have a little story nightmare to share with you about renting a car in France.  Hopefully, you’ll never encounter the types of problems I did, but if you do, you’ll understand what to do to navigate the difficult task of renting a car and dealing with road assistance issues. Continue reading →

A multi-sensory experience devoted to Calvados apple brandy

Apples in the Calvados Experience boutique-multi-sensory experience devoted to Calvados

If you say, “Pont-l’Évêque” to cheese lovers, many will immediately think of the strong-scented (pungent), soft cheese that is often considered to be one of the 5 stinkiest kinds of cheese in France. It’s my all-time least favourite cheese. It smells really bad and fortunately, doesn’t taste that way. But good news! Pont-l’Évêque may no longer have a negative association to the stinky cheese. There’s a new tourist attraction in the village—a multi-sensory experience devoted to Calvados apple brandy, which has a much nicer smell. Continue reading →

Take Your Daughter To This Museum In Paris

Pierre and Marie Curie and daughter Irène Joliot-Curie and son-in-law, Frédéric Joliot-Curie

I never really cared for the sciences when I was an adolescent. In high school,  I almost failed chemistry and at home, my chemical engineer father would bug me by using chemical terms all the time. Instead of saying, “Pass me the salt”, he’d say, “Pass me the NaCl (Sodium Chloride).” He liked the periodic table of elements whereas I preferred pop music. Had he taken me to the Marie Curie Museum in Paris during my first trip to France, I might have had a greater appreciation for the sciences. This free museum is worth a visit, especially for young women. They will be inspired by the story of one of the greatest scientists in the world. Continue reading →