Alpine view

All the Alps in one view.

Zürich woke to yet another cloudy morning, as the sun rose on winter solstice. On this, the shortest day of the year, we hopped on a plane to Washington, DC, following the sun to the west. Flying high above the clouds, we enjoyed daylight for 15+ hours, though inside the plane we never really got to enjoy the sunshine. When I checked out the window, soon after we reached cruising altitude, I was blessed with a grand panoramic view of the Alps – the French, Swiss, and Italian Alps – spread out beyond a sea of clouds.

The Alps, seen from the airplane leaving Zurich… with low clouds covering all the lowlands.

Paris

Less than 24h in Paris – but still a photographic opportunity.

After a few days in Provence, I needed to travel to Paris for my flight home.  The timing did not work to connect from train to plane, so I was forced to overnight in central Paris (darn!).  On Saturday evening I took the opportunity to enjoy a full French meal in a delightful brasserie, then ambled back to the hotel among the throngs of summer tourists and Saturday-night revelers.  I woke at sunrise on Sunday morning to stroll around the city while it was cooler and quieter.  Read on and check out the photo gallery.Early morning light at Le Louvre. Continue reading “Paris”

Provence

A short week in Provence during a record-setting heat wave.

I joined the family for a three-day visit to Provence, outside Avignon.  We rented a villa in a tiny village surrounded by pastoral beauty, giving us a good base for exploring the area and plentiful opportunities for early-morning bike rides through the countryside.  It  quickly became my habit to hop on a bike shortly before sunrise, cruise randomly along narrow lanes through ancient fields of lavender, sunflowers, wheat, apricots, and more.  I concluded each of my outings with a stop at the Boulangerie in the village, arriving home with fresh-baked pastries and bread.  Not a bad way to start the day.  Read on for more – and don’t miss the photo gallery.Church in the center of Maillane, Provence. Continue reading “Provence”