Food photos from our recent trip to Montpellier

One of the pleasures of traveling, for me at least, is to eat foods I normally wouldn’t eat at home. Since we had an apartment for this recent trip to Montpellier, this included some meals we prepared on our own, as well as some French fast food we brought back to our apartment to enjoy. … Continue reading Food photos from our recent trip to Montpellier

After a long, miserable day of travel, we’re finally home from Montpellier

We’re finally home from Montpellier, back in Phoenix. I spent most of the past 24 hours wedged into middle seats on airliners, so I’m now rewarding myself with one or more cold beers, in my kitchen, in my underwear. It’s good to be home. A young woman from our parish, whom we met during our … Continue reading After a long, miserable day of travel, we’re finally home from Montpellier

The long journey home from Montpellier is underway

After fifteen days in Montpellier, France, our long journey home to Phoenix is underway. The upside of getting an early start is not having to rush. The downside is a lot of time spent waiting. We unwittingly arrived at the airport an hour before check-in was scheduled to begin for our flight to Paris. We … Continue reading The long journey home from Montpellier is underway

A hike up Pic Saint-Loup, a short drive from Montpellier

A hike up Pic Saint-Loup was expected to be a highlight of our trip to Montpellier. We decided to make the ascent last Friday, when decent weather was forecast and while we still had the rental car. As far as I could tell, it’s not at all easy to get to by public transportation. As … Continue reading A hike up Pic Saint-Loup, a short drive from Montpellier

If you’ve ever struggled with the gender of French nouns, take heart!

Last Saturday around midday, Kathryn and I were at the zoo here in Montpellier, and we found ourselves looking at the giraffes next to a French couple and their young children. I overheard the father saying to his children, “Les girafes sont beaux!” As soon as the words finished leaving his mouth, the mother corrected … Continue reading If you’ve ever struggled with the gender of French nouns, take heart!

I’m way behind on my posts, so here’s a brief status update from Montpellier

I was doing so well at publishing a blog post at least once a day, and then when we got back from Lourdes it kind of fizzled out. Well, have no fear, we’re doing well here in Montpellier. Yesterday I finally posted about our road trip to Sommières, which happened last Thursday. Last Friday we … Continue reading I’m way behind on my posts, so here’s a brief status update from Montpellier

Another road trip from Montpellier, this one to Sommières

Since we’d reserved a rental car for four days, I felt a certain obligation to make the most use of it. Thursday morning, after lingering a little too long over breakfast, we got in the car to visit Uzès, an ancient walled village that dates back to pre-medieval times, about a 90-minute drive from Montpellier. … Continue reading Another road trip from Montpellier, this one to Sommières

Last-minute road trip to Lourdes for Mass with Cardinal Burke

One advantage of not over-planning a vacation is that you leave yourself open to opportunities that arise. This week, we changed our planned daytrip to Lourdes on Saturday to an overnight trip on Tuesday and Wednesday. At Sunday Mass here in Montpellier, we learned that an American cardinal, His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke, would be … Continue reading Last-minute road trip to Lourdes for Mass with Cardinal Burke

We’re back in Montpellier after a whirlwind side trip to Lourdes

Kathryn and I just got back to Montpellier after a whirlwind 30-hour side trip to Lourdes. This is just a quick update because the last two days have been somewhat exhausting. I’m really happy we didn’t do this as a day trip as we’d originally planned. Four hours driving a rental car I’m not familiar … Continue reading We’re back in Montpellier after a whirlwind side trip to Lourdes

We eventually made it to Lourdes

It took us a longer than planned to get our rental car in Montpellier, and then the drive took longer than planned, but eventually we arrived in Lourdes well before sunset. The hotel is not bad, and the manager was amenable to letting us leave two hours late tomorrow. We arrived in Lourdes quite hungry … Continue reading We eventually made it to Lourdes

A few photos from Montpellier before hit the road

Not long after our safe arrival Saturday in Montpellier, the Gilets Jaunes protests started to get interesting, more or less outside our window. First they marched up the street, then they marched down the street. Then we heard a commotion and returned to the window to see a line of police in riot gear. A … Continue reading A few photos from Montpellier before hit the road

Just a quick status update and a change of plans

This is going to be brief, since we’re heading out in a few minutes to join a friend who gives tours of Montpellier, and then probably out for a few drinks with him after that. We’ve moved up our planned side trip to Lourdes. We originally planned to go next Saturday for just the day. … Continue reading Just a quick status update and a change of plans

Arrived safely at our apartment in Montpellier

We enjoyed a bit more sleep on our flight from Paris to Montpellier, but since we were only in the air just over an hour, there’s not much else to say. By the time we collected our bags, we had missed a shuttle bus to the city by about 15 minutes, so we had to … Continue reading Arrived safely at our apartment in Montpellier

In Paris, waiting for our flight to Montpellier

I planned to write a brief status update as we took our seats on the flight from Detroit to Paris, but somehow we ended up in an AT&T dead zone, so I had no access to the internet. The flight was uneventful, other than a bit of turbulence leaving Detroit. Kathryn and I both got … Continue reading In Paris, waiting for our flight to Montpellier

Cookies and our breaking points

If you’re reading this, we’ve safely landed in Detroit. I’ve never been to this airport before, but I hear it’s nice. I’ll report back when I’ve had a chance to look around. In the past, I’ve had a difficult time sleeping on airplanes. However, on the flight from Phoenix, I was asleep before we pushed … Continue reading Cookies and our breaking points

It’s five o’clock somewhere

In fact, it’s already well after seven o’clock in Montpellier. Is it too early to reset my watch? The last time we were at Terminal 3 at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport was the last time we flew to Montpellier, about 30 months ago. They were in the middle of extensive renovations then, and today we’re … Continue reading It’s five o’clock somewhere

Bags packed, ready to go

Kathryn and I were up and at ’em early this morning to start our long trip from Phoenix to Montpellier, although compared to our normal weekday schedules, it was like we slept in. Even after a couple leisurely cups of coffee, we finished our last minute chores way ahead of schedule. We’ll leave for the … Continue reading Bags packed, ready to go

Our next trip to Montpellier, France, starts next week

Kathryn and I are getting ready to take off late next week for a couple weeks in the south of France. Once again, we’re renting a small, furnished apartment in Montpellier. In fact, it’s the same apartment we’ve rented twice before, just a few steps from Place Jean-Jaurès in the heart of the historic center, … Continue reading Our next trip to Montpellier, France, starts next week

Holiday lights, fountain in the historic center of Montpellier, France

I took this photo of the fountain near the entrance of Esplanade Charles de Gaulle in Montpellier, France, on December 17, 2002. It has the distinction of being the oldest photo in my Google Photos collection — for now, at least. The camera I used back then, a Minolta point-and-shoot, had low resolution by today’s … Continue reading Holiday lights, fountain in the historic center of Montpellier, France

Hockey and Popeyes, recent news items out of Montpellier

Montpellier, France, is still one of my favorite places in the world, so I try to keep up with the local media there. I thought I’d share a couple recent news items that caught my attention today. First, our second favorite hockey team, the Montpellier Vipers, finished the regular season with an 8-0 home win … Continue reading Hockey and Popeyes, recent news items out of Montpellier

Aigues-Mortes walled city from the ramparts

On a day trip from Montpellier a couple years ago, Kathryn and I spent a winter morning touring the walled city of Aigues-Mortes, France. While the city is a popular stop for tourists, you can tell from the television antennas and satellite dishes in the photo that normal people still live inside these walls, as they have since … Continue reading Aigues-Mortes walled city from the ramparts

People watching during a three-hour happy hour in Montpellier

Almost as rare as a jackalope sighting, this bar in the square beneath our apartment in Montpellier had a three-hour happy hour! It was still considerably more expensive than what I’d expect to pay for a pint of domestic beer at a local joint in Phoenix — but, oh, the people-watching!