France: Café au lait

France: Café au lait

“Café au lait?” asked the square, solid waitress in our Paris pensionne. “No, my wife won’t be coming down this morning” replied the American, firmly, trying to convey he understood what he was being asked, when clearly he didn’t. “Pardon, monsieur, café au lait?” repeated the puzzled waitress. “Yes, she was the one wearing a … Continued

Spain: Discovering La Rambla Barcelona

Groups of girls tittered and huddled together whispering. Middle-aged couples strolling arm in arm glanced then looked away. The agitation and flurry of interest seemed to be growing as someone in the ambulating crowd neared our table. Munching on paella and sipping sangria I glanced up to see what all the fuss was about. Down … Continued

New Zealand: The Daily Grind

My phone buzzing around 7.40am is the call to arms. The text comes through “walking this morning?” Whether I go or not, every morning at 8.00am a group of not-so-young women meet at the Khandallah Park swimming pool and begin their ascent. We are no Hillarys or Tenzings but the climb up Mt Kau Kau … Continued

Sri Lanka: Climbing Sigiriya

“I am the Queen” giggled the middle aged Japanese lady as we stopped for her to sweep past us, borne aloft by her two Sri Lankan guides. We watched with envy as, cool and calm, she ascended the steep metal staircase with her feet making walking motions while several centimetres above the steps. Firmly gripped … Continued

Scotland: The Heather and the Fern

A pile of travel diaries sits on my desk. Most are mine, two are not. My grandfather’s 1937 and my mother’s 1951 diaries augment my stack. All New Zealanders of Scottish descent, it is 150 years since our ancestors emigrated but we have all felt the pull to Scotland. The cat jumps on my desk … Continued

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