French May Day Blues

My muguet and a single rose are on the dining room table in water, thanks to hubby. He was out early this morning and came back bearing gifts and bonheur – happiness. The selling of flowers, without a permit, is permitted to the general public only on this day. It is a tradition, along with…

Happy 20th Anniversary South Africa!

Today marks the 20th Anniversary of South Africa’s first democratic election of April 27, 1994. South Africans will go to the polls once again on May 7 to cast their ballots in the fifth democratic election of the country. By all standards, the country is still a young democracy. In just two decades it has…

The economics of a foreign language

The Economist recently published an article on a study about the worth of a foreign language. To briefly summarize: the overwhelming negative listed against the better decision-making and cognitive development positives was an underwhelming 2% premium on earnings to Americans – with French, Spanish and English earning different premiums.This had me thinking about my experience…

On local politics and cabinet reshuffles

Out with the old, in with the new.         Photo: www.dw.de After his Socialist Party’s crushing defeat at the polls this past weekend, The Hexagon’s President, François Holande was quick to make like other past Presidents of the Republic: fire the right hand man. So Jean-Marc Ayrault is out, and Manuel Valls…

Switzerland’s ‘stand-alone’ vote

Source: Picture-Alliance/DPA The Swiss voted in a referendum on Sunday  to curb immigration from the EU. Granted it was a close vote, with 50.3% voting for this move, it is however an Anti-EU stance by this quaint country of chocolate and snow-capped picturesque mountains. For the average non-EU traveller – it means no real change…

Chasing dragons

The weather has been fairly mild in Paris for this time of the year, and an added bonus has been the sunshine we have had. The mild reference may just be a misnomer, as a friend in South Africa pointed out when I mentioned this. Today the sun was out and although it was fresh…

Happy Chinese New Year!

I am officially acknowledging the start of my new year today, on the day of the official Chinese New Year, the year of the wooden horse. Paris info has listed all the parades that will be taking place in the various arrondissements over the 15-day celebrations. This is not my year, but this article states that…