Irregular Post; Bagnols2

Friday April 14, 2017 Bagnols en Foret Bonjour,             Noisy-quiet here.  The boys run and scrum and follow and jump and climb or chase laughing and occasionally voice significant displeasure with each other.  As you might expect, sharing is not yet  high on their list of behaviors.  Sometimes they sit and read with Meg or Alice or Francoise (Alice’s mother) who joined us from Paris mid-week or play with Daddy and the legos or Papy with long balloons.             Since David can not drive with his foot injury, I drive us in my tiny rented Fiat Panda to the big Carrefore in Frejus to do the shopping.  Unbelievable the variety of meats and cheeses and pastry and prepared dishes and wines there.  Want a whole fresh rabbit (skinned and gutted for sure) for roasting?  Varied fresh lamb and veal cuts?  Assorted fresh terraines or pates? Got it.  They had a wine special earlier in the week; 50 euro store credit when you buy 150 euros of wine.  Got it.              Tuesday we visited the beach in Ste Maxime (Turkish kabab for lunch), historical centre Frejus on Thursday (Lebanese take away for lunch).  David’s foot injury limits the kind of places we walk and visit.  Francoise saw Meg take a foto of a rotisserie roasted lapine (rabbit) beside the roast chicken.  She bought it for dinner.              Frejus was called Forum Juli when founded by Julius Caesar in 44AD.  There is a large ancient forum, aqueduct, and a fine  archaeological museum (not yet visited by us) there. It is a “go back to” when the kids are not with...

Irregular Post; Bagnols Again

Monday April 10, 2017 Bagnols en Foret Bonjour,             Quietly eventful.             KLM flights to Gena via Amsterdam began last Thursday with hard rains in Boston. Storms in the south and midwest screwed up air-traffic so that there were bad lines at terminals in BOS. After 90 minutes in one line we were hailed “Anyone for Amsterdam?  Follow me.”  Four couples left the LONG line and started a short expedited line for check-in.             “OhOh!  Your reserved seats do not exist!  I’ll have to find new ones.”  said the agent.  “OK.  I have two near each other but not together; #26J and 27H”.  It turned out 26 and 27 are separated by toilets.  I am in an exit row with “extra leg room”.  Our new Global Entry card allowed us quick easy TSA pass through; very nice!              The plane was not at the gate when were supposed to load. “It is being towed over here (Terminal A) from terminal E.”  Through the rain, and occasional lightening, it appeared and carefully avoided the wings touching any other plane.  We did take off after only 100 minutes delay.  Not a problem as we had a four hour layover in Amsterdam.              Genoa is a small airport, easily negotiated for baggage, passport check, car rental, and exit on a Friday afternoon.  We have a Fiat Panda!  A “cute” little diesel manual shift car.  The trunk is only large enough for our two backpacks.  Out and onto the autostrada heading for a night stay in Finale Ligure, Italy, an hour from Genoa and three more hours from Bagnols.  Destination an agritourissmo specializing...

Irregular Post; January Paris

Thursday Jan 12 2017 Bonjour “Paris in winter?’ Yes, as you know, Paris in winter doesn’t really do sunny skies. Although we did experience one welcome morning with partly cloudy for a couple of hours. Typically, damp or drizzle or mist or light rain or just damp. Layer for all possibilities and, if you can, look currently stylish. We have been on the go almost all day, every day. We got a Metro pass in December with our picture on it. It can be loaded for 7 days of unlimited rides on all trains and buses but it can only loaded for Monday to Monday. Meg is the Metro genius; I just follow and look for the signs. Based on recommendations, we had reservations for food at two upscale establishments and visited three museums and a couple of markets and MANY streets. Louis Vuitton Museum, European Museum for Photography, the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation Museum. Lunch at Aux Lyonaise and dinner at L’Atelier. Louis Vuitton Foundation is a Frank Gehry architecture building and had a major exhibition of master painter works that were in a russian collector’s collection; Picasso, Matisse, and MANYMANY more. Being the only museum open on Monday it was CROWDED. They do not have the infrastructure to handle those crowds. We waited on line for 90 minutes to buy tickets. TIP: do not go on Monday without a per-purchased ticket. GO for the earliest time they open in AM. Be prepared to look through crowds at the paintings.  Enjoy the interior architecture; it reminded me of the Star Wars Death Star Tuesday’s lunch; hearty three course Lyonaise...

Irregular Post; Bagnols en Foret

Dec 29 BonSoir,           Chilling in Bagnols with the family.  Nice was lovely around Christmas weekend.  Sunsets were amazing because the clouds were above the horizon and the sun lit them from below.            Bagnols is an hour away by highway and then some narrow winding roads.  LOOVELLY to see everyone and the two little ones; 2 1/2 and 1 years old.  Tristan is trilingual in French Mandarin and English, and Gabriel is monolingual in baby. “travel light and wear a...

Irregular Post; Nice France

Monday Dec 26 Bonjour,           A Christmas weekend in Nice; Lovely. We are a few blocks away from the Promenade Ingles and the beach. Too anyone to be in the water, but everyone is out walking and using new roller blades and scooters and radio cars and … There is a dedicated two lane bike section and very wide walking, jogging promenade beside the roadway for cars and buses. Busy place. And to think this is where the truck massacre took place 6 months ago on Bastile Day.           Friday, 24th the open air market had flowers in addition to the foods, fruits, vegetables etc. Open markets are marvelous things to experience and to shop in. As a traveler, they say a lot about the culture and I prefer his to supermarkets. The variety and convenience is lacking but the vitality and immediacy is great. Dinner on Christmas Eve was of local choices. Daube (beef stew) is very tender long cooked beef with carrots in a rich gravy. It is served with some kind of pasta!! Mine came with gnocci and Meg had it on Monday with ravioli that resembled tortellini. Meg had stuffed vegetables. Very nice with a local red wine. Dessert was crème marron, a mousse of chestnuts!, with a whipped crème topping. It was so rich we needed coffee to end.           Christmas day we walked the promenade in the morning with many others. Meg posed with a bunch of jogging Santas. New roller blades on kids wearing color coordinated kneepads and helmets, pink scooters, Santa hats on many. As usual, there were a handful of...

Irregular Post; Paris in December

“OnTheRoadAgain!” December 2016 Bonjour, First leg;  IcelandAir to Paris for a couple of days. WE left BOS Wednesday PM, changed plane in Reykjvik , landed in Paris, and ensconced at an Ibis Styles hotel at the airport.  This one has a planetary/StarWars theme. for decor.  Interesting. RER into the city takes a few a half hour but is quite convenient.  We spent time in the Galeries Lafayette.  Some very expensive name goods for sale.  I could replace my old broken watch with a name for between 150 and 750E but I could just wait.  The terrace has some vistas and the street store windows are paper creations with fantastic moving pieces.  Attached are two quick images with minimal post-processing. Friday 14th Bonjour, A couple of short days in the City of Light.in December. Kind of Christmassy but not crazy. The first leg of the journey was with Iceland Air. An offer of $430 round trip BOS-CDG came last May and it was grabbed for a month travel. WE knew we were going to visit with David Alice Tristan and Gabriel in Bagnols after christmas until New Years. So we filled in other times; Canary Islands, Nice, Malta, and more Paris at the end. The other planes were done by Airtreks because of the difficulty of scheduling. VERY INTERSTING legs for these connections. The Ibis Styles hotel at the airport was very convenient to the terminals. We needed that because of the very early flight on Saturday to Canary Islands. It was a crowded hour commute by metro into the city. But Meg knew how, where, and when. Even getting a...