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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Gardanne, Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur, France

Aug 18, 2011 - Moving the posse north

We are moving north, to Paris. Moving my posse is like a herculean effort. First consider that the house must be as immaculate as it was on arrival. Next, layer on the reality that an early morning departure for a family coming off a month vacation is absurd and in some cases, resisted, to and by all members under 20. And, of course, it has to be a complicated series of connections, specifically: drive to Marseille Provence Airport to drop the car back at P3 where we found it, walk to the bus station outside Hall 1 to catch the Marseille St...

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Aug 17, 2011 - On the move again....

Today we are packing up to go. I have so many pictures to upload and so many stories to tell but so little time. The return to America started with me taking Cassie back to Avignon to catch her plane back to England. We have spread out across this whole house as you can imagine, i am sure we will leave some things behind. But the sun is up, and the pool is cold, and Aix en Provence begs us to visit for dinner, so perhaps we will throw the laundry in the case, tidy up for Catherine and save the work and the cooking and even the reading for...

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Aug 16, 2011 - Marseille

We visit Marseille. We walk for hours looking for the Arab district. It turns out it was 2 blocks away from where we started and it is too scary to hang around very long. We visit a religious store, intense. We eat at a cafe. We shop on the Rue de Paradis. We overpay for mediocre gelatto. We walk around the old port which has a million restaurants we did not even consider. We fight a little about gummy worms. We spontaneously decide to take a petit train tour at dusk. The sunset is gorgeous. The petit train goes to the highest point in...

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Aug 14, 2011 - The Market in Gardanne

Today I learned to count in French. It is surprising that it took me this long but circumstances and exchanging money now make it necessary to know numbers in french. Today my mom and i went to the Intermarche. We are tired from coming home late last night from NICE and everyone sleeps in a little late. We have pancakes to make American Breakfast but need eggs and milk and butter. We should just sit down and eat the red velvet birthday cake which is taking up the whole fridge space, but of course, i am the same here as at home -- i am...

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Aug 12, 2011 - Nina's 12th Birthday

Nina has celebrated many, but not all, of her birthdays somewhere else. Often this is due to the fact that her vacation coincides with her birthday. This year is no exception. For her French birthday party, she opts to stay in for Family Dinner much like we do in the united states. This is the day also the day we pick Mamo and Noah up from the Airport so we have three guests now and suddenly we have gone from a sleepy lazy vacation to a busy one. For her birthday Nina requests Chicken Curry with rice for dinner and red velvet birthday...

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Aug 11, 2011 - Plan de Campagnes

We decide on a half and half day. One half swimming and enjoying the sun, one half adventure. The adventure today is that we are going to the mall. I would divide shopping in France into three categories. One is the food shopping which is mostly accomplished at the market and the boulengerie (for pain) with a quick trip to the Intermarche or Carrefour for stuff that comes in boxes and plastic like rice, pasta, soda or Tpaper. The next kind of shopping would be specialty shopping which is more about a destination than a purchase, for example...

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Aug 10, 2011 - Cassie comes to Visit

So at the end of the blissful day playing Domestic Goddess (Tuesday), i decide to put a potion on my hair that supposedly straightens it for 30 days. I read the directions, of course, carefully, over a nice glass of Bordeaux. Wash the hair, apply the creme, wait 30 minutes, dry and flat iron, ta da straight hair for 30 days. This is on Tuesday night. So after the process is complete, i go to bed because it is 1am and we have a busy morning on WED in that we have to find the AVIGNON airport and pick up Cassie who is coming to visit for one...

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Aug 9, 2011 - Domestic Bliss

Cooking, specifically, baking, in France is hard work. Partly this is due to a new kitchen layout and different tools for the job. Partly it is due to the ingrediants (aka the language). Partly it is due to the lack of products, Baking powder for example is an american phenomena and is not something you actually purchase here is France. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baking_powder There are a lot of chemical details related to the heat of the oven, the desired amount you wish your food to "rise" and the chemical interaction that baking powder...

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Aug 8, 2011 - The Grocery

So we start out with the best of intentions. today we will COOK. The weather report sounds bad: CLOUDY! Can you even imagine? The fridge is empty, the blog is days behind, laundry needs to be unpacked and washed, Nina still needs paint and a canvas to paint a picture as a gift for Catherine. We have a million plans and errands for the day, we talk about all of them over our new favorite breakfast, sunny side up eggs and toast. We start to make a shopping list because Guests are coming and we should have Food to make Dinner; because Nina is...

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