Tag Archives: Blog in France

Croc Monsieur: Meet Adam Ruck, The Man Who Cycles in Crocs! – One man’s faith – a visit to Sagrada Familia, Barcelona – English French words

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Some interesting posts this Wednesday on very different subjects. Stephanie, the Llamalady from Blog in France, interviews English cyclist Adam Ruck, author of France on Two Wheels, about his bike trip across France. Australian blogger Frugal First Class Travel, whom I discovered recently, describes the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. She also has lots of tips for winter travelling. Regina from Petite Paris, the Australian website that has all those wonderful B&Bs in Paris, talks about all the French words that exist in English. Enjoy!

Croc Monsieur: Meet Adam Ruck, The Man Who Cycles in Crocs!

Interview by Stephanie, the Llamalady, from Blog in France

with Adam Ruck, author of France on Two Wheels “… a terrific guide to the culture, history, food, B&Bs and other French delights”. He also blogs on cycling and skiing in Adam’s Blog

adamloire-300x218It’s amazing who you meet on Twitter. Through my @llamamum account, I happened across Adam Ruck, author of France on Two Wheels. As a keen cyclist, I’m always interested to find out about fellow cyclists so I contacted Adam and asked if he’d write a guest post for me. And here it is.

Many travel books start as a publishing or fundrasing idea, and most travel articles start as that ghastly word, an angle. Others develop out of a real holiday or journey, and my book, France on Two Wheels, falls into that category.

A friend rang me to say he was looking for someone with whom to ‘bicycle’ (he does hate the word ‘cycle’ unless applied to washing machines or the economy) to or from Switzerland. I agreed to the return trip. Read more

One man’s faith – a visit to Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

by Frugal First Class Travel, an Australian who loves to travel – especially in Europe – and who has gradually learned how to have a FirstClass trip on an economy budget, without missing out on anything!

sagada_familiaI’m not a religious person.  In fact I’m a card carrying atheist.  But I couldn’t help but be so moved when I recently visited the Sagrada Familia – the Gaudi designed Basilica in Barcelona.  Building has been underway for over 100 years now, and there are plans (hopes?) to complete the works in time for the centenary of Gaudi’s death in 2026.

Gaudi was a very religious man apparently, and it was this faith that drove him to spend the bulk of his life (and indeed until the end of his life) dedicated to this project.  But the Sagrada Familia is not just a testament to religious faith.  Regardless of your own spiritual beliefs, consider this:

Gaudi knew the church would never be completed in his own lifetime, but he did it anyway. Read more

English French Words

by Petite Paris, an Australian-based service for Australian travellers and fellow Francophiles

It’s incredible (“uncreaaabl”) how many English words are actually French!! And every single one of them sounds so chic (oops there’s one) and glamorous!! Décor, couture, décolletage, negligee, deja vu, rendezvous, fiancé, boutique, bric-a-brac, encore…

At this moment I am listening to my Michel Thomas audio – learning to speak French without any memorizing, writing, homework or even trying for that matter. It’s brilliant! No pressure to learn, just listening and ‘hearing’ what your listening to. Its amazing how it flows in and stays there – the next thing you know your constructing sentences in your head with so much ease it couldn’t possibly be normal. Its a practical and modern method of teaching. I highly recommend it!! [AND SO DO I – Fraussie] Read more

Two thumbs up for sign language cafe in Paris, Café Signes – The Bouchons of Lyon – Chandelle versus Bougie: A Brief History of Candles

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It’s amazing how quickly Wednesday comes round again! This week’s bloggers’ round-up starts with two interesting restaurants. Mary Kay from Out and About in Paris takes us to Café Signes where sign language is the main means of communication, while fellow Australian Wendy Hollands from Le Franco Phoney introduces us to the “bouchon” in Lyon, the food capital of France. Stephanie, the Llamalady from Blog in France takes us on a different adventure with a history of candles.

Two thumbs up for sign language cafe in Paris, Café Signes

by Mary Kay from Out and About in Paris, an American by birth, Swiss by marriage, resident of Paris with a Navigo Pass for the metro that she feels compelled to use.

Ordering lunch or a cup of coffee in a country where you don’t speak the language can occasionally feel like a daunting task. One restaurant in Paris offers an easy solution because each of their menus has pictures of all the signs needed to communicate an order. If you’re thirsty and would like something to drink, simply make a fist with the fingers of your right hand, extend your thumb and raise your hand towards your mouth. But don’t be surprised if your waiter responds with rapid hand gestures because Café Signes is operated by a mixture of non-hearing and hearing staff. Read more.

The Bouchons of Lyon

by Wendy Hollands from Le Franco Phoney, an Australian who writes about all things French in La Clusaz, Annecy and Haute Savoie as seen by an outsider ...

Lyon is the food capital of France, and part of the reason for that is bouchon restaurants. A bouchon is a traditional Lyonnaise restaurant, usually family-run, serving traditional dishes such as tripe, brains and tête de veau (head of a calf). Pictured is the interior of one such restaurant in Lyon, Le Bouchon des Carnivores. Some might find it amusing that a vegetarian ends up eating at a French restaurant for carnivores, and indeed, my party of four thought it hilarious, but I had the last laugh. But let me rewind. Read more.

Chandelle versus Bougie: A Brief History of Candles

by Stephanie, the Llamalady, from Blog in France, an Irish llama and alpaca breeder living in the centre of France, who also runs a carp fishery and a holiday gite.

What is it about winter nights and candles? I’ve been having candlelit baths (known as spooky baths in the Dagg household) for about a month now. They’re wonderful! Candles feel cosy and relaxing but I’d never think of lighting one in summer, even late when it is dark.

Candles have been around in various forms since the Chinese Qin Dynasty in 300 BC. Yup, the Chinese got there first as usual and used whale fat. Beeswax came in about rather later. Read more.

In search of a quincaillerie – Festival du nouveau mot – Bicycling The Burgundy Canal for 100 Euro A Day

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Three very different posts for this Wednesday’s bloggers’ round-up: Abby from Paris Weekender takes us on what seems like a wild goose chase to a large number of Paris quincailleries; LLamalady from Blog in France tells us about a wonderful competition to suggest new words in French; while Experience France by Bike describes one of her favourite cycling itineraries – the Burgundy Canal. Thank you one and all!

In search of a quincaillerie

by Abby from Paris Weekender, an American living in Paris who offers suggestions for Paris weekends, either staying put or getting out of town

I am in the home stretch of apartment renovations on my new Paris apartment. Last weekend, I had hoped to move in, but due to delays in the completion of the renovations, I found myself with a free weekend in Paris and not much desire to sit in my temporary studio wasting it away.

I thought I would make myself useful and offer to help my interior architect with any job she could give me to make less work for herself (and of course, speed up the process). She asked if I could pick up handles for my cabinets and sent me the specifications and quantities. Read more.

Festival du Nouveau Mot – OR  How to Make Up French!

by Llamalady, an Irish llama and alpaca breeder living in the centre of France, who also runs a carp fishery and a holiday gite

As an expat, I often make up French words. The word I need totally escapes me, generally because of a modicum of stress induced by trying to not appear a bumbling dimwit in front of one of the kids’ teachers or the bank manager or someone equally authoritative. There seems no quick way to find an alternative description so, since all else fails, I shamelessly Frenchify the English one I’m trying to translate. You know the sort of thing – ‘J’ai forgetté’ intead of ‘J’ai oublié’ or ‘Le steering roue’ for steering wheel (le volant). And amazingly, occasionally it actually works! Read more

Bicycling The Burgundy Canal for 100 Euro A Day

by Experience France by Bike, an American who loves biking anywhere in Europe, but especially France, which has the perfect combination of safe bike routes, great food, great weather and history

If you are looking for the perfect deviation for an upcoming trip to Paris, look no further than Burgundy, specifically the Burgundy Canal.  One of my favorite starting points along the canal is Montbard, just over 1 hour, but light years from busy Paris.  Just a few steps from the train station you can rent a bike and quickly immerse yourself in Burgundian history, enjoy cycling along car-free bike paths, eat local Burgundy specialities, and visit picture-perfect medieval towns all at a fraction of the cost of one day in Paris.  Bicycling along the Burgundy Canal is one of my favorite itineraries in France. Read more 

The Romance of a Sale – Zen Things in Paris – Laines Locales Wool Festival at Prébenoît

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I’m afraid I was so busy last week setting up house in Blois that I didn’t bring you my usual Wednesday’s other blogs post. But I’m back in Paris and my computer is up and working again. Thank you to the authors of this week’s posts: Petite Paris, an Australian-based independent bed & breakfast booking agent for anyone planning to travel to the romance capital of the world, on Zen things to do in Paris; Llamalady, an Irish llama and alpaca breeder living in the centre of France, who also runs a carp fishery and a holiday gite, reporting on a local wool festival; and Bread is Pain, an American living in the Rhone-Alps “slowly eating and drinking myself through the country”, talking about her love of sales.

Zen Things in Paris

from Petite Paris

When it comes to Paris, we already know the usual recommendations. We know the rule is Laduree for tea.  Pierre Herme for Macaroons. Coffee at Cafe de Flore. Or at Lipp Or at Deux Magots.  We know that a visit to the Louvre is a must see. Eiffel. Piere Lachaise. And we know all about the Batobus river boat tours. The Moulin Rouge. and the Opera. And these are all great, bien sûr… Read more.

Laines Locales Wool Festival at Prébenoît

by LLamalady from Blog in France

We are just back from a chilly and breezy but interesting morning at a wool festival. It was organised by Laines Locales of Limousin and was held at nearby Prébenoit Abbey. Had the weather been better we would have cycled there – it’s about 10 km away – but we’d have been blown backwards! Read more.

The Romance of a Sale

from Bread is Pain

I love sales.  Love them.  I will buy things that I don’t really find attractive or things that I absolutely do not need based solely on the fact that they are on sale.  As a dear friend of mine puts it “really, by not buying it you are losing money because it is such a good deal!”  (RIGHT?!)   This statement pretty much sums up my feelings when I see something marked down.  “Why look!  It’s a goose leash!  We don’t have a goose, I know, but one day we might and come on, honey, it’s 70% off!”  Read more.

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