In our first two weeks in France, we have never sat in a car, never taken a train, only once boarded a bus. So what […]
I used to say that I minored in Poker in college, a reference to the card game my roommates and I would keep active in […]
It’s not Alice’s Restaurant. But on Saturdays, you can pretty much “get anything you want” in the three open-air markets that spill onto the squares […]
The streets of Aix filled with pedestrians this week as the month-long, regulated, French soldes, or sales, began in stores and the sun warmed temperatures to 60 degrees. Our favorite stops were the Bechard patisserie, where we had creampuffs with mounds of whip cream that both brought a sign and painted our faces, and the Book in Bar store, a marvelous English-language bookstore where one can sit for hours with a cup of tea, dessert and something to read.
Our first morning at IS-Aix language institute, we stopped in at Café Joseph across the street for a jolt of caffeine. It has added free […]
Through the sleep-deprived haze of our taxi ride from Marseille to Aix-en-Provence, the last leg of our 46-hour, mechanically marred, twice-delayed journey from frigid, snow-covered […]
Depending on the weather gods, it could prove a matter of perfect timing. “I have a half teaspoon of herbes de provence left,” Kathy announced […]
With Kathy giving instructions, I never know what perilous road our car will end up on. I wrote about this adventure, in the Aude region of southern France, for the Christian Science Monitor in 2008.
As we drive southeast of this restored medieval village on the narrow, two-lane D611, triangular signs with images of falling black boulders line the route. I’m never quite sure how to guard against these rock slides, but the signs do cause me to grip the wheel of our gray, puttering Ford Fiesta with both hands.
What makes Provence so special? I tried to answer that for myself in this article for the Christian Science Monitor, written on our last extended visit there in 2007.
There is nowhere else in the world where you can keep busy doing so little and enjoying it so much. One day you’ll understand.
– Uncle Harry’s advice to Max in Peter Mayle’s ‘A Good Year.’
In the 15 years since his best‑selling book “A Year in Provence” made this region a tourism magnet, author Peter Mayle often has been pilloried by the French: Mayle casts Provence as a trifle, it’s been said, buoyant but lacking in depth. His characters are exaggerated. He first profited from the region, and then left it behind when crowds of tourists converged on the places he’d helped make famous.