Book review: PJ Adams-Intoxicating Southern France

Cover of PJ Adams' latest book "Intoxicating Southern France".

Passing through some of the villages in Southern France and stopping along the way, JP Adams is your chauffeur. Get intoxicated. You won’t have a hangover, but you will feel a good buzz while reading PJ Adams’ latest personalized travelogue, “Intoxicating Southern France”. Each chapter is broken down into seven sections: History & Landscape, People & Lifestyle, Food, Shopping, Wine, Navigating the Area, Culture & Art. Having visited these regions, I like her personal touch, information and anecdotes

Best of Foire de Paris 2015

The hashtag for Foire de Paris (or in French "mot-dièse)

For me, the annual Foire de Paris is more than a home show. This year instead of concentrating on the furniture, home decor and renovations, I concentrated on the innovations and inventions: The “Maker Fair” (exploration of new forms and new technologies), which made its first appearance at the Foire; the Grand Prize in Innovations (Grand Prix de l’Innovations – new for 2015); and the annual inventions competition, Concours Lépine (read more about Concours Lépine). The Lépine competition is its 114th appearance with about 600 inventions.

Treasure Hunt at Musée d’Orsay

Colleen earning an extra 50 points imitating the sculpture, although backwards

We sat under the lion statue at the Musée d’Orsay counting up our scores: four teams. The four teams: a mother and daughter (12); three teenagers; the aunt and uncle; and two retired flight attendants. The post-hunt questions: “Did you ever find that chair?”, “Where did you find Sarah Bernhadt?”, “Did you see “The Voyager” statue?, “Wasn’t it a fun way to see a museum?” Daisy de Plume scores a winner again with another hour and a half treasure hunt adventure. THATd’Or (Treasure hunt at the d’Orsay) is the newest addition

Teenagers Visiting Paris

Girl wearing hat with her skateboard on Trocadero walkway toward Eiffel Tower

A Canadian journalist asked me how to visit Paris with teenagers. So I found out. Find some steps, a curb or grass to sit on in the afternoon. Bring a skateboard ( or longboard) to Paris and map out a city journey or practice session. Plan a picnic on a quai along the Seine or go on a bike tour. Run around the Louvre on a treasure hunt. Buy manga books or Goth and Lolita-style clothing in the Bastille area. Go shopping at any of the Paris malls or second-hand stores or go to a can-can show or how about that scary mansion in the tenth arrondissement on rue de Paradis….

Eiffel Tower Adds New Floor

Person walking across new transparent floor Eiffel Tower 57 meters up

March is a busy month for the Eiffel Tower: a new floor, a winter menu deal and vertical racing. From the Eiffel Tower’s new first floor, look down 57 meters through the new transparent glass floor. The 58 Tour Eiffel Restaurant located on the first floor has a pre-April 1 picnic basket menu. The price doubles April 1, includes your lift ticket. The first edition of La Vertical de la Tour Eiffel is being held in the evening of March 20. This race is 279 meters race from the ground floor to the top of the Eiffel Tower….

Study French in Paris

French speaking talking bears in a Paris toy store

This article has been updated with Conversation Exchange ideas.
The Paris Mayor’s Office has added a “Learning French” page to their Website with tips on who can take classes and where. Staying in Paris awhile? Check your with your local mayor’s office (each arrondissement has one) for information on municipal classes. No restrictions on nationality or residence status. You must be over 18.

Exhibit: Viollet-le-Duc, Visions of an Architect

Lady walking in front of the poster for Viollet le Duc exhibit at Cité de l'Architecture et du Patrimoine

Viollet-le-Duc renovated the crumbling walls and put his imprint on about one hundred French monuments, including Vézelay, Pierrefonds, Notre-Dame de Paris, Carcassonne, Saint-Sernin. At la Cité de l’architecture & du patrimoine until March 9, 2015, all of the signage and labels are in French and English. An opportunity for the public to see for the first time a considerable quantity of newly acquired graphic drawings and writing and relate to the public the various facets of this temperamental artist. This retrospective exhibit celebrates the two hundredth anniversary of his birth.