Champs Elysées: Going Vert

The BBC recently profiled a story about the Champs Elysées being covered in tiny plots of land, transformed by French farmers. For two days, the honking of Citroens was replaced by the baying of donkeys. The Jeunes Agriculteurs (Young Farmers) union organized last-weekend's event to underscore the plight of French farmers. Leave it to the French to make plight look pleasing...

Words to Live by

Let's be real, people. If I unleashed my true inner 13-year-old, this blog would be called "Puppies and Other Cute Stuff." Be thankful that I exercise a bit of self-control have not yet reverted to a puppy a day post.

Images borrowed from
LifeIsMiraculous & LiveJournal.

The Art of Travel: Souvenirs

“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” - Robert Louis Stevenson
The word souvenir conjures up visions of cheap Eiffel Tower key-chains and "I Heart NY" t-shirts and gaudy Cancun shot glasses. Linguistically though, souvenir comes from the French verb "to remember," a much more lovely notion than its modern consumerist meaning.

While I hope that my mind will always guard the precious details of all my adventures, I do often tote back an object that will help me remember a great trip. Most often that object is a small painting.

In the eighteenth century when groups of wealthy young Northern Europeans flocked to Italy on the Grand Tour, often they would return with a veduta (a view), a detailed painting of the cities they visited. While I cannot return from my trips with a Canaletto in tow like those eighteenth-century British gents, I do aspire to adopt a similar travel practice, even if on a far more modest budget.
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