Americans Celebrating the Armistice

Church and monument
Standing upon the stone sidewalks of a decaying French village is jarring because of its immortality–this village has looked more or less the same for decades.  The moss on roofs and walls is perhaps thicker, the chips in paint are perhaps more noticeable, but a World War soldier marching through this land with a heavy rucksack and soggy boots would still recognize this place.  And if that soldier marched by on November 11, he would have come across a couple dozen Frenchmen and two Americans standing in the rain, offering thanks.

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Chilling in a French November

Running
Stretching his legs in a brief moment of sun

Hercule Poirot is a famous product of Agatha Christie’s criminal mind.  His brilliant mustache and unshakable French accent combined with the less-notable ability to solve crimes have all kept this sleuth in high regard around the world.  I must admit, though: when Poirot’s accent was replaced by an actual Frenchman’s voice-over, I felt a little dirty.

These are the personal revelations one must cope with when the rain is falling on France’s countryside.

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And the Snow Came Down

Rooftops
I wouldn’t consider myself necessarily a “snow person.”  Then again I am not really a person for any particular weather. (Though 70 degree winter evenings in the desert were amazingly relaxing.)  During college I only had a bicycle for transportation, so like the postal service of old, I would pedal diligently through rain, slush, snow, fog, locusts…anything nature decided to throw at me.

But this is my first Winter in Europe, and soon to be my first Christmas in France, growing to a list of “firsts” for all of us.

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