Take one Canadian girl in les Alpes.
Add the ups & downs of living in France.
Cover with melted cheese...
Et voilà !

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Le Puy Mary

Good news, dear readers.

Compared to yesterday
I am able to walk much more like a normal person
& less like my elderly neighbour.
To tell you the truth, I'm even considering going to SH'BAM tomorrow!

Here is some more photographic evidence 
of why my legs are so stiff.

Le Puy Mary is one of the highest peaks (1787 metres) 
in the Parc Regional des Volcans d’Auvergne.
{Trust my aching legs... that's pretty high!}
You can read more about the history of the volcano here.

Just after 9 a.m., ready to go!

Although we started out in the forest, we soon hiked up past the tree line.

See?  No more trees!

But lots of beautiful colours on the hillsides.  The red is wild blueberries.
I loved the French Broom & the wild pansies!

Heading up & up & up.

Sometimes we had stairs...

... sometimes we didn't!

We finally reached the summit.

And were rewarded by this view during our picnic lunch.

We had some time to check out the orientation table...

& take a photo or two...

before heading allll the way back down again.

Maybe I should have made the trip down like this guy.

I'll bet his knees hurt less than mine!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Les Scènes du Week-end {11}

We had a fantastic time on our volcano/cheese weekend away.

That being said, my legs are in a sorry state
after two big hikes over two days.

You should have seen me hobbling around like a 90-year-old today.
It turns out that it's awfully hard to walk to work
when you can't really bend your knees. 

I cursed {silently!} every student who asked me a question in class,
because having to get up out of my chair
& write something on the whiteboard
almost brought tears to my eyes.
Ouch ouch ouch! 

Good thing I can blog sitting down!

at the top of the world {almost!}

beautiful butterfly
looking ahead...
stopping to admire the scenery


 happy trails

 my feet enjoying the view

 cow love

 cheese plate!!!

 apéritif aftermath

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Miam miam !

French word of the day: 
miam miam
 = yum yum!
Ever seen a strawberry give the thumbs-up?  Now you have!

C'est le week-end !
We are headed to the Cantal region in the centre of France 
for a few days of hiking 
around dormant (ahem, hopefully!) volcanoes
& eating cheese. 

Miam miam, non ?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

If only it were that easy...

You know how, when you buy a new wallet, 
it comes with fake credit cards?

Well, FQ treated himself to a new portefeuille recently
& inside, printed on cardboard, was this:

This week, while experiencing the annual exercise in frustration
known as renewing my Carte de Séjour (Resident's Visa),
I couldn't help wishing it was that easy to add French nationality 
to my collection of ID cards.

OK, OK, so the woman in the photo 
is a bit older than me,
surely has a better French accent than I do,
& has bangs & brown eyes.

Otherwise, I could totally pass myself off as her, non?

P.S.  The tomatoes have nothing to do with immigration.  
Just in case you were wondering.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Frenglish: With Sensations

 Now that summer weather is officially here 
(it was 29 degrees today!!),
 there seems to be an abundance of  
great T-shirt Frenglish in the shops.

I've chosen a rather inspirational example for you today.
Confusing but inspirational.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Les Scènes du Week-end {10}

This past weekend
 involved radishes,
brunch with friends
& curling up on the sofa with travel guides.

All things I'm crazy about. 

Brunch with friends in Geneva

yum yum yum
statue in the park where we wandered post-brunch

you've got to love a park that has waterlillies
plastic-bag dispenser in the park for dog owners

preparing for park nap
les dinosaures at Geneva's Natural History Museum
grocery shopping at Picard, a French fabulous frozen-food only supermarket


 wine + summer vacation planning = whee!

Saturday, May 21, 2011


I promised you more photos of our fancy-dancy lunch last weekend
to celebrate my father-in-law's birthday, didn't I?

We lunched at L'Ouest, which is a delicious brasserie in Lyon.
{In the wise words of Wikipedia,
that means "a type of restaurant with a relaxed, upscale setting...
professional service, printed menus, and, traditionally, white linen".}

L'Ouest is operated by Paul Bocuse, a famous chef based in Lyon.
He's all about the nouvelle cuisine,
which involves fresh, non-fussy, high-quality ingredients.
Sounds good to me.

So let's start with the important stuff...
What I ate for lunch!

starter:  delicious salad with the world's most perfect avocado
main: poisson with deliciously crispy veggies

dessert:  glazed strawberry tart with a thin shortbread crust

I really liked the simple, industrial design of the restaurant.

part of the very-modern wine "cellar"

love the table linens

le bar

I especially loved the open kitchen.
Watching the chefs at work?  Beyond entertaining.

the Paul Bocuse quote on the wall says, "happiness is in the kitchen"

the main chef acted as DJ, calling out orders just as fast as they arrived

How about some photos of those at my table, you say?

Juliette's napkin, almost as big as she is

FQ & Delphine

handsome husband

 goofy brother-in-law

 pretty mother-in-law

 the sibilings with their dad

After a few delicious courses &
a couple bottles of wine
we were feeling festive.
And ready for dessert!

le dessert est servi !  {can you see the candle in the middle?}

we sang "Joyeux Anniversaire" along with the organ grinder
Martin seems to have a sweet tooth already

just like his big sister
speaking of sweet...

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