Time Travel

In Hong Kong, we recently celebrated the Ching Ming festival, an annual commemoration of ancestors and, consequently, a poignant time of year when family memories are foremost in our thoughts. Thus, delving filially into the past, I often find it tricky to rationalise the circumstances which took hold right from when my parents first arrived … Read more

February in the Morvan

We love Cervon! We have lived at Maré le Bas in the commune of Cervon since 2005. This magnificent poster (pictured above) celebrating Cervon recently appeared on our local notice boards. I hope it will encourage some of you to visit when le confinement (which conveys the pain of parturition with none of the joy) … Read more

A Christmas Story

I am typing this on 2nd January 2021, and there is good news and bad news. Let’s leave it to the media to discuss the bad news. Among the good news here in France is that we are no longer compelled, every time we leave the house, to carry an Attestation de Déplacement Dérogatoire signed … Read more

December In The Morvan

Type CHRISTMAS into your search box and you will see that what we call Christmas today is essentially a pagan midwinter festival, which was adopted by the early Christians to coincide with the (supposed) birth of Jesus. In December, Jews celebrate Hanukkah, their eight-day festival of lights. Digression That calls to mind a limerick. “A … Read more

November In The Morvan

I am typing this on October 30th 2020. I have just looked up my earlier November effusions. Those were the days! At 8 pm last night, President Macron announced the reimposition of lockdown – le confinement. So, once again, we must all carry an Attestation de Déplacement Dérogatoire every time we leave the house. We … Read more

The Shadows Of Bubbles

One very intriguing aspect of living in a place like Hong Kong is that you often find yourself treading niftily between parallel cultures; and never more so than with language. For example, I recently learnt a new Cantonese expression – the above title – while daydreaming on a bus. I kick-started my knowledge of Chinese … Read more

Heritage Days

We always look forward to the Journées du Patrimoine – European Heritage Days – during the third weekend in September. You can visit the European Heritage Days website here. European Heritage Days enable us to visit public and private buildings, including some which are rarely open to the public. For many years, friends, family and … Read more

September In The Morvan

Another free library The free library in Corbigny, which I featured in my August effusion, prompted John’s brother, David, to send this picture of the one in his village in the West Country. He wrote: “I am sure that you remember the Great British red telephone box. Due to the rise of the mobile phone, … Read more

Book Exchange

Chris in Calgary emailed me with a picture of what she called a little free library. Well, the same idea has caught on in Corbigny and there is a larger version in the shopping mall at Avallon. In the lockdown, with socialising so restricted, free libraries like this are a godsend.Mind you, I have been … Read more