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Archive for May, 2012

A Week in Colorful Roussillon

May 31, 2012 @ 11:48 am
posted by Sandra Sheridan
Fascinating ochre cliffs of Roussillon

Fascinating ochre cliffs of Roussillon

We already love the village of Roussillon, the Technicolor bursts of yellows, reds, oranges and greens that burst through the village like an artist’s palette.  Now, we’ve found the perfect vacation rental, so we can settle in for a week to explore to our heart’s content.

We have enjoyed vacation rentals in Paris, where we learn to blend into the neighborhood and offer our daily “bonjours” to the baker and wine merchant.  We want to do the same in Roussillon, where this delightful studio is in the blissfully natural countryside but a five minute walk to town.

The old ochre quarry of Roussillon is nothing short of amazing.  It makes me think of nature’s divine art, of seashells with every color and design.  Such are the red cliffs of the quarry, striped in fascinating designs and colors and set against the backdrop of blue skies and green pines.

Countryside vacation rental in Roussillon
Countryside vacation rental in Roussillon

We won’t limit ourselves to Roussillon, as the entire area is replete with charming towns and the gorgeous landscape of the Grand Luberon and the Vaucluse plateau.  Perhaps a week won’t be quite enough.  We shall see.

 

We’d love to hear from you!  swsheridan@francedailyphoto.com

Copyright © 2005-2012, LuxeEuro, LLC.  All rights reserved.

Napoleonic Bivouac Comes to Life

May 30, 2012 @ 12:36 pm
posted by Sandra Sheridan
The Lion's Mound - scene of Napoleonic Battle of Waterloo, Belgium

The Lion's Mound - scene of Napoleonic Battle of Waterloo

Once again culturespaces, the accomplished manager of many French cultural and historical sites, delivers an incredible event to highlight the Battle of Waterloo. Though the celebration will take place in Belgium over the weekend of June 16, the emphasis is decidedly French. After all, it’s not like you can separate the history or destiny of France and Belgium!

The 13th Napoleonic Bivouac will be hosted by Walloon Brabant Province in conjunction with the Battle of Waterloo 1815 non-profit organization, the Waterloo Battlefield and the Waterloo tourist office. Staged in two locations, bivouacs will immerse you in majestic surroundings; in which more than 600 actors will take you through weapons and equipment, meal preparation and essentially the experience of day-to-day life of military camps.

From the 40-metre (130+ feet) Lion’s Mound, you can see the whole battlefield. The mound represents the supposed position, where the Prince of Orange (1792-1849) was injured before becoming King of the Netherlands. The mound is a spectacular site, a huge cone of earth with a lion perched on the summit to symbolize the victories of the monarchs. The single paw of the lion rests on the globe, and in the words of the architect, “…announces the peace that Europe has won in the plains of Waterloo”.

The mighty lion overlooks the battlefields of Waterloo, Belgium
The mighty lion overlooks the battlefields of Waterloo

From the top, a panoramic display table shows the positions defended during different stages of the battle. On Sunday, June 17, allied French troops will engage in ‘combat’, before making their triumphant entrance into Waterloo; where they will pay homage to the Duke of Wellington.

The public will enjoy a massive barbecue that evening to celebrate with the troops.  Attendees will have the opportunity to see medical teams in period dress administer first aid to the badly injured… watch the Duke of Wellington arrive in a horse-drawn carriage amidst a grand parade to the Wellington Museum… and ever so much more. The entire weekend is designed to bring history to life.

We’d love to hear from you! swsheridan@francedailyphoto.com
Copyright © 2005-2012, LuxeEuro, LLC. All rights reserved.

Memorial Day – “Souviens Toi”

May 28, 2012 @ 10:21 am
posted by Sandra Sheridan
American Cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy France

American Cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy

Today, I would like to visit our vast cemetery overlooking the English Channel in Normandy.  All of the crosses and Stars of David face the West, looking homeward toward America.

Today, I remember my husband’s grandfather, who fought in France in World War I.  And I remember my two uncles, both Lieutenants, both named Bill.  One was a pilot based in England, the other on the ground in Belgium.  I have the now frail, tiny letters they wrote to my parents from the ‘theatre’ of war in 1945.

And I remember a classmate, who died in Vietnam, a professor who served in Afghanistan.  So many wars, and so many casualties.   “Souviens toi.”

American cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach

American cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach

 

Copyright © 2005-2012, LuxeEuro, LLC.  All rights reserved.

Sharing Your Love of France

May 26, 2012 @ 3:41 pm
posted by Sandra Sheridan
A visit to the Louvre - Bien sur! Paris

A visit to the Louvre - bien sur!

Three years after my first visit to France, I was able to fulfill an important dream – to take my daughter to my favorite place.  She was the ideal traveler, willing to try everything and delighted with every sight, scent and taste she encountered.  We stayed with our friend in her 5th-floor apartment overlooking boulevard Saint-Marcel.

Our first day in Paris seemed to last 36 hours – wine on Place Contrescarpe, a visit to Jardin du Luxembourg, walking by the Seine, watching the bateaus along the river, out for the evening at a concert and wine bar.

And we travel for a long weekend, taking the TGV to Avignon and driving to our hearts’ content.  We see Gordes and Roussillon, stay in Aix-en-Provence, make our way to Moustiers Sainte-Marie and down to the Mediterranean for brief visits to Monaco and Eze.  On the long train trip back to Paris, we had plenty of time to remember the absolute wonder of sharing special places with someone you love.

 

A lovely park near the Grimaldi Palace
A lovely park near the Grimaldi Palace

We’d love to hear from you!  swsheridan@francedailyphoto.com

Copyright © 2005-2012, LuxeEuro, LLC.  All rights reserved.