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September 18, 2018

We headed to the cooler climes of the Alps in early August to try out an idea that’s been brewing for a while: a refuge-to-refuge trek. Escaping the sweltering heat that hit Europe this summer, if only for a few days, was a welcome relief too.

We had experimented with m...

July 27, 2018

Mornings were challenging enough getting four kids up for school plus Tom and myself to work. Then the animals started to arrive. Days are now kicked off by Dame Zeta, my feline alarm clock, frying bacon lardons for the chickens, cutting carrots and lettuce for the gui...

January 16, 2018

JANUARY 16 ― When someone mentions taking a gap year, visions of backpacking around the world absorbing different cultures, sights and basically having a jolly good time of it after years of hard study spring to mind. That is what I did.

But it’s far from what Matthew M...

May 8, 2017

Relieved and overjoyed. That’s how many are feeling right now in France, safe in the knowledge that the Republic is in the right hands, those very progressive, capable and all-encompassing hands…

In these bleak times, something rather special has happened here tonight....

April 24, 2017

France’s progressive and most promising candidate Emmanuel Macron has made it through the first round of the French elections. Many have breathed a large sigh of relief; I certainly did.

It is by no means over yet. The far-right candidate Marine Le Pen also made it thro...

April 21, 2017

 Just when you think it can’t get any worse, this global disorder, this downward spiral ― Brexit, Donald J. Trump’s victory, Russia’s rise, Syria’s incineration, Kim Jong-un’s nuclear game show, Turkey’s dance towards dictatorship ― another patch of the snug fabric tha...

January 25, 2017

This is what the resistance movement ‘Women’s March’ is about: We have a voice.

On Saturday, women, men and children, united by their sense of outrage at the appointment of Donald Trump as the 45th President of America, finally had their say.

Five million people in 600 l...

January 3, 2017

Minus 3 degrees was too cold to drag the kids to the midnight bash on the Champs-Élysée, and so the New Year’s Day parade seemed like the next best thing.

Our city of Paris certainly knows how to throw a good party, and despite the grey skies, Sunday afternoon’s was a f...

November 16, 2016

Since Donald Trump’s US presidential win last Wednesday, I’ve relied heavily on jokes shared by friends to cure my nausea and stop me from descending into a pit of depression. The biggest joke of all being that Trump has been elected as the next president of America: t...

November 2, 2016

The dismantling of the Calais camp began last Monday and is expected to be complete early this week. The French authorities have transferred more than 5,000 Jungle residents to reception centres across France, although 1,500 unaccompanied minors still remain in the cam...

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