Last month we went to Paris for passports, armed with a thick, triple-checked dossier and many backpacks full of the endless items needed for the care and keeping of two little kids. We knew it wouldn’t be easy. I wasn’t expecting a flâneur’s thoughtful weekend or a romantic getaway. But I dared to hope we could manage a little fun in addition to our American … Continue reading les enfants terribles: a hasty tour of paris with children
“It’s less than exhilarating, my existence here. Friends have moved on, to engagements and new cities. My old jobs are positively vintage, inaccessible. What’s left is family and this old house where each creak of the floorboards is familiar.
In a world so full of noise, this kind of quiet feels almost radical.” Continue reading flyover country
It’s interesting what we block out when we dream of or anticipate a place.
We must ignore the great unspooled ribbon of mind-numbing highway. The ugly big-box stores. The cloud cover that renders a day as colorless as a lump of pizza dough.
Sometimes I think we reserve those kinds of stringent observations for home: to criticize what we are used to and tired of. Continue reading from newlywed to retiree: on places, and what it means to love them
I had been in Cannes for a month without a home. That sounds dramatic. I had the essential–a place to sleep–for which I was grateful, but the two-week AirBnb stay I’d planned had stretched into a month as I waited to move in to my studio. The host, (one of the nicest people I’ve met in France or otherwise), hooked me up with the place, … Continue reading chez moi: a room with a view
The house in France hid behind a tall gate in a suburb of Lyon: Champagne-au-Mont-d’Or. With a name that promised champagne and gold mountains, I hadn’t known what to expect. Fresh flowers and gilded windows? Really, the house was modest, modern French. It was small and white and square and very clean. Everything in its place, and so on. I had never before lived that … Continue reading a room of one’s own