lundi 26 février 2007

Snowboarding pics

Woo hoo!!!!

We had a fabulous day boarding yesterday at les menuires. Except for that 5:55 am bus out of place Bellecour, which almost killed me. But lets not mention that again. I have never seen so much powder! I am so used to the icy northeast that I didnt even know how to handle it. a few times I ran into a snowbank, tumbled head over heels, and landed in a big pillowy pile of powdery snow, and didnt feel a thing.

Here are some shots:

Les montagnes.
Action shots!

Amy and Amir having some petits cremes.
If Amy sends me her pics, I'll add ones of myself...

vendredi 23 février 2007

the rapture

Janine left yesterday. Bon voyage! Her last night here we ate at Chez Paul. It was an extremely French meal. I don't even know what all the dishes were that they were bringing by, but I think feet were involved at some point. The general rule here is: eat first, ask questions later.

Tonight I am going with friends to see the band the Rapture. They are supposedly dance-y. And on Sunday I am going snowboarding! YAY! Amir found some place that will pick us all up by bus at 5:55 AM in place Bellecour. yikes! I'm psyched anyhow.

mercredi 21 février 2007

Back to Lyon

We got advice from everyone to drive the scenic route home, along the so-called Napoleonic Route, which apparently is the way that Napoleon took on his triumphal march from Elba to Paris. The road went from Grasse through Digne, through Oraison and Sisteron, Nyon and Valence. It was winding and went up and down switchbacks through the mountain passes, and took 8 hours to drive. We were very tired. But the views were gorgeous.
We stopped for coffee at a cafe which had this view.
Along the road.

The town of Castellane, where we stopped for lunch.

Leaving the town of Bras d'Asse.
Zipping by the vineyards as the sun was going down.

Along the Cote d'Azur

On Monday we drove along the coast from Nice to Monaco. It was awfully gorgeous. The only part I didnt like was Monaco, where we were stuck in non-moving traffic amongst Ferraris and Lexuses (Lexi?) while mopeds zoomed all around. We held up our end in our rental Toyota Yaris. We saw many cute towns and breathtaking views, and we stopped in Eze to watch the sunset and have a chocolat chaud. Janine tried a pastis.

The town of Saint Paul.
The pebbly beach at Nice. The French riviera is lovely, but not every town has a sandy beach.
Along the route to Eze.

We had our drinks on the terrace of this cafe.

A view from the road as the sun began to set. Cap Ferrat in the background.

On the road to Nice

Nice was verrry nice. The place we stayed was fantastic. It was in the town of Tourettes-sur-Loup. Here is a picture of the view from the bedroom. You can see all the way down to the ocean.

On the way there we stopped in Avignon. There is an old bridge there, the 'Pont d'Avignon,' that everyone in France knows, because it is the subject of a nursery rhyme. Because of that this bridge is a serious tourist attraction in France, we are talking primo tourist spot. We took a little audiotour of it and of the Papal Palace.
You may ask, "What in the world were the popes doing in Avignon?" I wondered that myself. It turns out there were various civil wars going on in Italy so the popes tended to wander around and take up residence with local lords and kings.
The Papal palace

dimanche 18 février 2007


Janine arrived Thursday, very smoothly considering the two feet of snow in Albany. I was busy with an IARC workshop on Gene-Environment interaction but met up with her that night. We went out to eat Thursday night at Bleu de Toi. It was delicious! I had the moules provencale and she the moules Bleu de Toi, which turned out to be mushrooms in cream sauce-- it had a very strong mushroom flavor. YUMMY!

Yesterday we took a day trip to Pérouges. It was a bit confusing, because Pérouges shares a train station with the town of Meximieux, so we got off the train and were wandering around Meximieux, and I was thinking to myself, "Gee, this town is kinda cute, not bad really, but it just doesn't seem like the mondo-tourist destination which is so quaint that it has been featured in various movies." So then we went in the tourist information office and they directed us to Pérouges, which was a half-hour's walk away.

Pérouges turned out to be a medieval village on top of a hill. It was a uphill trek there, and once there you can see quite a distance in every direction. I guess they liked to be able to spot the marauding armies coming from afar. It looks like this:

Most things were closed because it is the off-season, but we wandered around and had a leisurely lunch. Janine had duck in a bed of very buttery mashed potatoes, and I the Assiette Vegetarienne.

And today we are off to Nice!

mardi 13 février 2007

Murder (or a heart attack)

I read an interesting article in the NYT magazine about what a fiasco lethal injection is. Apparently it is rarely supervised by a physician, and when that occurs they are frequently in another room. It sounds pretty gruesome for everyone involved. I didn't realize the AMA is formally against doctors participating in the death penalty, although I guess it goes along with the Hippocratic oath.

On a lighter note, I had a very silly French lesson tonight. We had to describe a pretend crime, with une victime, un coupable (the person responsible), une témoin (witness), la personne qui a découvert le cadavre, et les policiers. The point was for us to use adverbs and the past tense. It was kinda fun. Next we're learning the imparfait, which unfortunately is not used in the exact same way in English and French. sigh.

On a even lighter note, I'm getting ready for my next houseguest. We're going to head down to Nice on Sunday for a few days and will be staying here. Looking forward to it! I'm crossing my fingers and hoping for lots of sunshine!

dimanche 11 février 2007

Blood Diamond

Saw Blood Diamond last night. Leonardo was good, Jennifer Connelly was not. But you gotta agree with the message.

Mots nouveaux for the weekend:
L'ampoule = light bulb
dégrader = a layered haircut

jeudi 8 février 2007

Ghetto Pass

This article cracked me up. It was truly a walk down memory lane, reminded me of those days wandering around Washington Heights or Harlem. In the white neighborhoods in NYC, strangers never talk to you, because it would be a threat. But in the 'hood, everybody's fair game. "Mami, Mami, Mami... (kissing noise)" The Ghetto pass explains.

Heels Win!

How pleasant to wake up this morning to the news of the win in Cameron Indoor Stadium. Tip off was at 3 a.m. so I had decided there was no way for me to catch the simulcast.

Our players are not only better, but also more attractive.