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Europe » France » Lorraine » Metz April 21st 2014

Metz the discreet ! This is how I would describe this City... As opposed to its famous neighbour city Strasbourg, immediately recognizable through its black and white buildings, its Christmas Markets, gastronomy and traditions, the Capital of the Lorraine region is not featured much in the news or even in the documentaries highlighting the beautiful régions of France. And this is a shame really as the Lorraine region has so much to be discovered and enjoyed by the Visitor, much more than the recipe of its namesake "quiche" or even the famous Mirabelle plum I am of a curious nature opened towards the world, but this is only last winter while I was watching the "Come Dine with Me" show set in Metz, that I was finally able to discover the Capital of Lorraine and its ... read more
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Europe » France » Lorraine » Metz April 21st 2014

It is by wonderfully sunny afternoon, this Sunday December 1st that I boarded the regional train towards the City of Metz and its Christmas Market, Christmas Markets should I rather say as they are 6 in total spread around the city centre, but all within a walking distance. As soon as I arrive in the historic train station I was greeted by the towering silhouette of the giant Vosgian Christmas Tree dressed in silver and white which welcomes you in a City that knows to celebrate Christmas with warmth ! I know the centre of Metz quite well and yet it was a a wonderful surprise to discover all these familiar Streets and squares dressed in festive colours starting with the Place de la République with its Big Wheel and its Ice Skating Rink then to ... read more
Metz Christmas Market
Metz Christmas Market
Metz Christmas Market

Europe » France » Alsace » Strasbourg April 21st 2014

When one arrives like myself in the 3 Borders Country and one speaks about Christmas Markets, one name comes back on everyones lips, Strasbourg ! The largest, the most beautiful and famous Christmas Market of all and as I discovered while researching prior to my visit, the Capital of Christmas, nothing less ! And as I boarded a comfortable double decker grand tourism bus for the very reasonable price of only 19.00 Euros return filled with a joyous crowd of people coming from all parts of the country, I wondered if the city of Strasbourg which I was about to discover, with such a fame and reputation would live up to my expectations, and I must say it even exceeded them ! To say that I arrived on this December 05th in a city dressed up ... read more
Strasbourg Christmas Markets
Strasbourg Christmas Markets
Strasbourg Christmas Markets

Europe » France » Île-de-France » Fontainebleau April 21st 2014

Na 2 dagen thuis, vertrokken we terug richting Fontaine Bleau. Kris, Dieter en Jerina waren eveneens terug van de partij. Vrijdagavond stonden we op de overvolle camping in Grez-sur-Loing. Carol en Bertrand heetten ons hartelijk welkom op de camping. Is altijd reuze plezant om zo aan te komen. Dan vallen de horden allemaal wel te verdragen. Dieter en Jerina vervoegden ons 's morgens in de vroegte. Na een gezellig kopje koffie vertrokken we richting de parking van Rocher des Oiseaux. Iets verder werkte ik verder in een project van mij. Iets verder vonden Kris, Dieter en Jerina zelf enkele leuke boulders om te poetsen. 'Triple hop' en '....?' werden er geboren. Alleen viel er sporadisch regen uit de lucht, spijtig. Al snel wandelden we terug richting Rocher des Oiseaux. Daar klom Kris 'Action Direct'. Dieter sneuvelde ... read more
Mauvais mine
Fur Immer
Action Directe

Europe » France » Brittany » Audierne April 20th 2014

Saturday, 19th April 2014 We made a relatively early start this morning, heading for the town of Audierne, just over 15kms north of us, for their Saturday morning market. The weather was fine and with little traffic on the road we made fairly good time, even though we made a few wrong turns. No matter, the GPS got us back on track in no time. Audierne is a fishing village set picturesquely on the side of a mountain overlooking the river inlet. Along the harbour stretches the town's main shopping area with its cafés, bars and restaurants, creperies, boutiques, estate agents and holiday agencies, the town hall, the tourism office, and the regional bus stop. In Rags' opinion markets are markets, with little to differentiate them. This one did have a few differences compared to others, ... read more
At the markets
Point du Raz
Mmm, crepes.

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Europe » France » Brittany April 16th 2014

Plovan Tuesday 15th April 2014 This morning we woke quite early and Rags noticed that the kitchen windows were wide open. Imagine our shock when Elna, who had gone out to see Notre Dame in the evening, found the apartment full of gas when she returned at about midnight last night. We were all asleep and the stove had obviously not been turned off properly after cooking. She smelt it as soon as she walked in, turned it off and opened up the unit to air. Could have put an early end to our trip! Elna did comment wryly that if the worst had happened she at least would have had an extra couple of days in Paris. We lugged our gear to the nearest Metro station and made our way to the Budget car ... read more
What was so funny?
Thanks Mariette and the Stroos
Rags couldn't get over the size of these.

Europe » France » Île-de-France » Paris April 15th 2014

I suppose I’m somehow dating myself here, but I can’t help thinking back to the days when you would buy a 45 or an album because you liked a particular song you heard on the radio. Invariably you took it home and played it a million times. It was your favorite song and you felt as though you were the one who had discovered it. Of course, as time went on, you noticed more and more people were also enjoying “your” song. It actually became popular and it seemed everywhere you went people were humming the song or talking about how great the band was. It was still the same song you discovered, but in some way it seemed different now that so many other people liked it. Other people were interpreting the meaning of the ... read more
Gargoyles at Notre Dame
Chateau Fontainebleau
Eiffel Tower and Carousel

Europe » France » Île-de-France April 13th 2014

Last two days in Paris we were forced to slow our pace ( a little). Slept in Wed. A.M. Took our time and didn't arrive at Taverna Esmeralda until noonish. After another lovely brunch decided to stroll the backstreets of the Latin Quarter for a true flavor of Paris life. Went to Marche St. Germain , the old market square where stalls of beautiful fruits, veggies, cheeses, fish, and flowers assault both eyes and nose. The lovely flowers still smell good in Paris! Then onto exchange money and purchase cereal, fruit, milk and croissants for later. Our stroll home down Boulevard St. Germain took us back to our little studio apt . Where we enjoyed a rest and hot tea in our little patio garden oasis. After a visit with Eric our English speaking landlord we ... read more
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Europe » France » Île-de-France April 13th 2014

On the bus to Normandy we enjoyed the beautiful French countryside. Lovely farms, cows and bright yellow fields of Rape seed. The small villages we passed through were exactly as one would imagine .... Only lovelier. Photo ops were non- existent due to being on bus, which was torture! upon arrival at main D-Day Museum in the village of Caen, our tour guide,Pasquale,a lovely knowledgeable woman turned us loose to tour the museum and meet later for lunch. After lunch and a movie of the D- day envision we left for the tour of beaches, each with its own museum , monuments and bunker sites. The most impressive sight was the American cemetery at Omaha Beach where 9,000 of the 23,000 Americans killed in the invasion are buried. The striking monument there "The Spirit of American ... read more
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Europe » France » Île-de-France April 13th 2014

After a very late arrival home from Normandy last night we needed to speed pack and be ready for b Bed by midnight. Ort taxi arrived promptly at 8:00 pm . Found Turkish Air terminal, checked in bags ,got our boarding passes and went to find oour Gate and go through security . after waiting in line a full hour to get security our boarding time had passed and we all three Had a bag pulled to be inspected. Mine was first and the lady opened everything in it.... Every zipper nook and cranny.... Even opened my glasses case! After stuffing all back in I ran for gate to tell them two more travelers coming .....bags being inspected hold for them and I followed last few passengers through gate to board ..... We were led down ... read more




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