attention abeilles: hiking the massif de l’esterel

The best thing about waking up in the morning–or returning to my petit chez moi at any time of day–is the view from my balcony: the brilliant bay outlined by mountains. I come from the part of Missouri that’s just barely not-Kansas. Deprived of elevation for so long, any hint of it makes me giddy. Mountains comfort in their grandeur: a constant illustration of perspective. When you … Continue reading attention abeilles: hiking the massif de l’esterel

secret garden: serre de la madone

Menton, France has a Secret Garden beauty, rich as it is in dilapidated grandeur.  There are candy pastel hotels tucked in the hills, once wedding cake-grand but now closed with broken windows. The small downtown area houses murals, fountains, and statues that show their age. A striking yellow staircase leads from the Basilique St. Michel down to the sea, but it begs for a fresh coat of … Continue reading secret garden: serre de la madone