Archive for the 'Quiet Time' Category


Here in Provins…

The stone and timber construction of this home is punctuated with the weathered but sturdy door. Each of the homes along the main street leading to the upper town of Provins is graced with lace curtains. From the bolted repairs of this door, one might think it abandoned, but the delicate touch of fabric at […]

Off the Beaten Path

On the secluded southwest corner of the grounds of Hôtel des Invalides is this quiet topiary garden walled off from the Avenue de Tourville. It is far away from the entrances to les Invalides and the tourists. In my many visits here I have seen families, lovers, readers, walkers, and not infrequently a single person […]

French Cats Don’t Get Fat

Lyon is considered the gastronomic center of France. Restaurants do not give out doggie bags, so plenty of food goes uneaten. This cat lives next to several restaurants in Vieux Lyon, the historic center of the city. Why is he skinny?

Do You Vapoter?

They say the best way to break a bad habit is to replace it with a good one, and now that electronic cigarettes have become all the rage in Paris, let’s hope the fruity-scented vapor replaces the tobacco tar stink that still hangs over the city’s sidewalk cafés. In the past two months I’ve seen […]

Spa Treatments from Luxe to Frugal

It has been a long, long winter, and now that the sun is making timid appearances, you may be interested in gently reintroducing your body to the world with a trip to the spa. For a posh swim and gourmet pastries at a historic palace hotel, book an afternoon of “Gourmandise Sportive” at the Shangri-La (10 […]

Not True, But Cute

“In America only the successful writer is important, in France all writers are important, in England no writer is important, and in Australia you have to explain what a writer is.” –Geoffrey Cottrell

White Blanket

The Figaro newspaper has a beautiful gallery of images taken during this past week’s snowfall in Paris. Enjoy (Hat tip to Prete-Moi Paris.)

Jewelry Classes in Paris

I had thought it would be easy to find courses in basic jewelry design in Paris. After all, the city is the world capital of fashion. There are independent jewelry stores all over the place. But no. What little I could find were studies that took at least a half year. I finally landed on […]

Knit Wits

Grab your knitting needles, embroidery threads, patchwork and hoops. The Paris Needlework Fair (l’Aiguille en Fête) takes place in February (February 9 and 12, 2012). The fair is not restricted to age or gender. The men are knitting along side the women and there is even a sporting event: Speed Knitting! The annual Paris needlework […]

RIP Shakespeare & Co’s George Whitman

George Whitman, the founder of the famous Shakespeare & Company Bookshop, passed away at the age of 98 on December 14th. Originally from America, he opened Le Mistral Bookshop in the Latin Quarter in 1951, changing the name to Shakespeare & Company to honor of Sylvia Beach’s original shop near Odéon, which closed during WWII. […]

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