Photojournalist Jonas Bendiksen Risked his Reputation Warning the World

Veles Hackers

For a period of 15 days at the end of every summer, Perpignan, France hosts one of the world’s most prestigious photojournalism festivals. Photographers from around the globe come to Visa pour l’Image to exhibit their work and immerse themselves in the work of their peers. Galleries spring up across…

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There’s an App For That: Hexatrek’s Breathtaking Route Across France

Lake in the Pyrenees

Many years ago, when my husband Andy and I were visiting Mount Rainier National Park, we encountered a young couple who had come there to hike to the summit. Upon learning that they enjoyed backpacking, we recommended that they return someday to circumnavigate the mountain on the Wonderland Trail. They…

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Little Red Riding Hood, An Insanely Popular Tale from France

Little Red Riding Hood, Doré

One is hard-pressed to think of a tale as widely known and with as many versions as Little Red Riding Hood. First published in France, in 1697 the story remains popular to this day. It’s difficult to imagine any piece of modern-day writing receiving as much recognition. What is it…

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September Potpourri: Arches, Ambassadors, Elections, and Addidas

Arc de Triomphe Wrapped

At the end of each month, I try to select a handful of fun and informative Francophone news items that have come across my screen. Here are my picks for September 2021. It’s a Wrap In mid-September, one of Paris’ star attractions received a new skin. The massive Arc de…

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Evacuating Kabul: French Ambassador Narrowly Escapes, Fears Future

French Ambassador Evacuating Kabul

Since last month’s calamitous evacuation from Kabul, I’ve wondered what happened to the French journalists, NGOs, citizens, members of the military, and diplomatic corps that were stationed there. This week I came across an eye-opening interview with the French ambassador to Afghanistan, David Martinon, printed in Le Monde. Rather than…

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Returning to Wonderland, A Trek in My Husband’s Spiritual Homeland

Evening in Glacier Basin

In 1992, my husband Andy and I camped for 4 nights at Mount Rainier National Park in Washington state. It was our first trip to this spectacular park—a magnificent wilderness that ironically, Andy was indifferent to visiting. While hiking one day, we spotted a sign for the Wonderland Trail—a ~100-mile…

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North by Shakespeare, An Underdog Defies 500 Years of Literary Doctrine

North by Shakespeare

We all love underdogs: the urban breakdancer that one day makes it on Broadway; the business school dropout that becomes a millionaire; the single parent who takes on the school board and wins; the whistleblower who exposes corporate or governmental corruption. Yet few of us have the stamina to undertake…

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Pandemic News from France: Setbacks, Incentives, Skeptics, and Celebrations

July 14 Fireworks

As pre-pandemic activities slowly return, I’m beginning to think about when I might travel again to France. However, the pace of life is busier than ever. Last week, we hosted a graduation party for our daughters. At the end of next month, they will be heading off to different colleges.…

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