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Showing posts from June, 2020


The poppies explode in the fields outside of Quarante about every two or three years. Mostly appearing in fields of grain, suddenly we become aware that this will be a poppy year. Drives to the market or to visit friends, or just rambles through the country, reveal fields  decorated with unexpectedly bright slashes of red. Just one of the many reasons that this corner of Occitanie has captured our hearts. Let's take a walk. An old friend. There's a mare and a gelding in a pasture just outside of town. They know that we bring carrots. An attempt to capture the dominant colors - the amazingly blue sky as background to the poppies. The vines are fully leafed out early this year, while the nasty yellow broom's pollen seeks out my nose with a vengeance. Picture taking slows me down. Poppies from the level of the path... ...and from above. Poppies or not, the views from just outside the village are worth a quick promenade. We often


The swifts have returned to the south of France. They chirp. They zoom like Spitfires. They eat bugs. And they shit up a storm. It seems as though they deposit the remains of every fly that they eat on the windshield of our car. Love the swifts. Hate the swifts. About every second or third year is a good year for poppies. Here's one pic. I'll put up more on a separate post. It;s hard being an American in a foreign country right now. France is certainly not perfect. But you can't point to evidence of institutional racism as easily as you can in the USofA. Police killing suspects in custody is unheard of here, much less that people of color are killed in greater numbers than their percentage of the population. There is no evidence that courts sentence people of color differently than whites as there is in the States. Is immigration from North Africa and the Middle East a perceived problem? Yes, it is. The fact that the number one name for newborn boys in the UK