Categories
Podcasts Travel

‘Join Us In France’

If you want to travel in France and learn about French history, the Join Us in France podcast is a superb resource.

The podcast, which launched in 2014, was originally co-hosted by Elyse and Annie. They live in France and know it well. Annie was born in France but has lived in the United States. Although Elyse grew up in New York, she knows the language, the culture and the country’s history inside and out. Elyse, the native American, often seems more French than Annie who was born in France. Go figure. Due to time constraints, Elyse is no longer a co-host but still comes on the show as her time permits.

The podcast does a great job of explaining France and its culture to Americans. I especially enjoyed the episodes about driving in France, cheese and Le Marais. I also learned a great deal by listening to recent episode in which Elyse and Annie discuss the best places to see modern and contemporary art in France.

Each episode has show notes that are very helpful in planning a trip. For example, the modern art episode lists 18 museums around France to explore, including many new to me.

There are plenty of other resources to help travelers to France select hotels and restaurants. But this podcast will help you to understand France. Annie also offers self-guided audio walking tours. She’s not offering personal tours during the pandemic but I hope they will return.

Annie and Elyse were interviewed for Amateur Traveler episode 428 about Paris. The Amateur Traveler is a great podcast but if your destination is France, Join Us in France is the podcast for you.

iTunes

Categories
Music

Clémence Poésy to Anne Sylvestre: ‘Thank you for the tenderness’

Clémence Poésy marking the passing of French singer-songwriter Anne Sylvestre (1934 – 2020) on November 30th:

A beautiful, personal tribute from a great actress to a wonderful singer.

Clémence Poésy, juin 2019 Emscop, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Anne Sylvestre on Apple Music

Categories
History

Remembering the Lessons of the Holocaust

Christopher J. Dodd served in the United States Senate from 1981 to 2011. His father, Thomas J. Dodd (1907 – 1971) also served in the United States Senate. Earlier in his career, Thomas Dodd served as a prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes trials. He held the number two position on the prosecutorial team which was led by Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson (1892 – 1954).1

Thomas J. Dodd, front left, executive trial counsel, and Robert Jackson, front right, chief U.S. prosecutor and associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States at the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg. (Thomas J. Dodd Papers, Archives & Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, University of Connecticut Libraries) – UConn Today

In a letter to the editor of The New York Times former Senator Dodd marks the 75th anniversary of The Nuremberg War Crimes trials and explains that the “lessons of Nuremberg must be continually relearned and that the work of protecting dignity and promoting justice are the responsibility of each generation.”

He adds that at this moment, human rights, “the rule of law and even truth itself are threatened by continuing violence, resurgent authoritarianism, racism and anti-Semitism, and rampant conspiracy theories, propaganda and disinformation.”

Dodd reminds us that we have not yet learned the lessons of the Holocaust and that we ignore these lessons at our peril.

  1. Imagine a sitting Justice of the United States Supreme Court traveling to Germany to serve as a criminal prosecutor.
Categories
Travel

Remembering SARS

I recently stumbled upon this photo I made at the Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) in 2003 warning passengers about the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic.

According to Wikipedia, over “8,000 people from 29 different countries and territories were infected, and at least 774 died worldwide. The major part of the outbreak lasted about 8 months, since the World Health Organization declared SARS contained on 5 July 2003. However, several SARS cases were reported until May 2004.”

Wikipedia adds that COVID-19 is closely related to SARS. In retrospect, the impact in 2003 was minor — although it did not feel like that at the time.

Categories
Technology

Why Blog? – A Place to Speak One’s Mind

Photographer and blogger Kirk Tuck, in summing up his 2018, wrote:

Everyone should have at least one safe space in which to be archly and profoundly opinionated.

I’m not sure if Kirk was writing tongue in cheek. In any event, I always look forward to his posts.

Kirk’s blog is called the Visual Science Lab. He’s been blogging since 2009 and has more than 1,300 followers.

Given all that has happened, 2018 now seems like a long time ago. I wonder what the next two years will bring our way.

Categories
Technology

Why Blog? – ‘You just might want to say hello’

What motivates people to blog? The late Nora Ephron (1941 – 2012) writing on HuffPost in 2006 explained that:

getting heard outside the world of blogs occasionally requires that you have something to say. And one of the most delicious things about the profoundly parasitical world of blogs is that you don’t have to have anything much to say. Or you just have to have a little tiny thing to say. You just might want to say hello. I’m here. And by the way. On the other hand. Nevertheless. Did you see this? Whatever. A blog is sort of like an exhale. What you hope is that whatever you’re saying is true for about as long as you’re saying it. Even if it’s not much.

Among her many accomplishments, Ephron wrote the script for the lovely romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally.

I hope to share other answers to this question.