Joni Mitchell – Blue

Blue –  Joni Mitchell Blue is in my top three albums of all time. It was not always that way, in fact it was a slow burner to say the least. I bought this album quite early on in my collection compiling. I gave that first copy away at the local record exchange. I justContinue reading “Joni Mitchell – Blue”

Claude Monet and his House at Giverny

The story goes that Monet in his search for a house to accommodate his growing family set out one day by train from Paris and spotted what was then the tiny hamlet of Giverny. Standing out amongst the cluster of properties along Giverny’s long main street he saw from his carriage a long but lowContinue reading “Claude Monet and his House at Giverny”

Vaison La Romaine – Ancient Rome in Provence

Vaison La Romaine This excerpt is taken from my French Travel Book THYME for PROVENCE Our first stop on our travels by car into Provence from the north, our entrance to the sun, has nearly always been the town of Vaison la Romaine. It is for that reason a location that is important to usContinue reading “Vaison La Romaine – Ancient Rome in Provence”

A Tempting Paris lunch spot St Andre Bistro restaurant

Bistro St Andre on the left bank in Paris, France. The stroll from St Michel across towards St Germain takes you down Rue St Andre and it is an interesting quarter of Paris. Enjoy some narrow side streets and covered arcades before meandering back towards the Seine. For architecture lovers there is plenty of interestContinue reading “A Tempting Paris lunch spot St Andre Bistro restaurant”

St Paul de Vence a beautiful French perched village

St Paul de Vence is felt by many to be the loveliest of the perched villages in the south of France. Perhaps, but I do love Bonnieux! St Paul de Vence, an attractive, compact village became a magnet for artists and art lovers in the 1920’s, when a group of impressionist painters rediscovered this sleeping neglected village.Continue reading “St Paul de Vence a beautiful French perched village”

A Day in……..Uphill, Somerset


The small village of Uphill consists of the village itself around the marina and down to the beach. Also, it spreads along the Axe Estuary from the marina where the Nature Reserves are filled with birds, wildlife, and plenty of botanical interest. This area at the southern end of Weston Super Mare is a most delightful place and you can easily, with a picnic, spend a whole day here exploring with your camera or binoculars. It reminds me of parts of Suffolk, particularly around Snape, where the skies are big, the land filled with birdsong. It is generally much quieter than Weston Super Mare, day visitors there would never be aware that such a beautiful place was just a few hundred yards from hustle and bustle of a Bank Holiday weekend.

My Vinyl LP Record Collection – reviewing a life through Music

Today, as I listen to the Bruce Springsteen ‘River’ album, I am wondering what it is that shapes our love of music and particularly a genre that we seem to stay with for life. To be fair I did come to Springsteen a little later in life although the seeds were already there for him to step into my collection. My reason for starting this journey through my past, to paraphrase Neil Young, was my father’s vinyl collection. My father died recently, and he left a vast collection of vinyl including 78’s which I suppose are technically shellac. His CD collection was even more extensive, but it was the vinyl that fascinated me.

Cordes Sur Ciel and a whole Lot of rain

This excerpt is from my French travel book – OFF THE AUTOROUTE, the fifth in my Series of French travel memoirs. Please enjoy on Amazon including Kindle Unlimited. It will take you on a tour of France from Calais to the South and back through Brittany and Normandy. It is time to move on, andContinue reading “Cordes Sur Ciel and a whole Lot of rain”

In search of Hemingway and Midnight in Paris – The Full Story

Writing about Paris throws up too many ideas and most of them are very personal and I wonder does anyone want to read such personal memoirs. Which brings me to Hemingway and the Woody Allen film ‘Midnight in Paris’ which is basically a Paris travel advertisement ( and no less enjoyable for that) based on Hemingway’s book ‘A Moveable Feast’. We watched the film again for about the fiftieth time over Christmas. Hemingway’s book is a memoir of his time in Paris in the 1920’s with his first wife Hadley and their young son. CLICK ON PHOTO FOR FULL ARTICLE

Normandy – First Impressions of Touring France

The dawn chorus was just thinking about making an appearance when we started our approach to the ferry terminal at Portsmouth. It was then that I realized why my mouth had gone so dry and my hands were shaking. I had not got the faintest idea of how to proceed to the ferry and an embarrassed fear set in. Where on earth do I go – what lane do I take?