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Friday, August 31, 2012


      When my hungry family asked, "Why don't we go to a nice place to eat",  I suggested France.   They liked the idea so last month we jumped on jet.

  Miami's hilarious duo, Buzz and Kathy Fleishman, happened to be onboard too. Together we made our way to, and through,  the Paris airport.  Their comedy routines made the first leg anything but dull.

The family caught a bullet train to Brittany where our wonderful French friend, Brigitte, was spending the summer.  The crisp, cool, weather was nothing like the sweat lodge we had left.


The five of us piled into her Ford Fiesta and drove to Brigitte's medieval town,  Josselin. 



It was Bastile (Independence) Day when the villagers' wardrobe steps back 800 years (but they've still got their 2012 glasses). 

  We got there late.  Straw strewn in the streets had already been trampled by jousters on horseback.  

     Not to worry.   There was still plenty of cider, wine, and beer so we chilled in the town square. As local musicians began to play we joined a circle of dancers.  

What fun, being independent in this new, exotic place.
Stay tuned as the adventure continues....


Monday, August 27, 2012



           Last weekend my wife and I went north to Virginia to witness a truly wonderful wedding.  

We hunkered down in an ancient log cabin 

nestled high in the hills where Christmas trees grow.              

The rustic shelter came with a feather bed, rocking chairs, 

and a fine old hat that hung from the wall. 

Early next morning I slipped out for a walk.  As I headed up the stone path I heard a "swoosh", turned, and saw that old grey hat flying out the door! 


It hovered for a moment then gently set down on my head. 

 I figured, like the dog we'd left behind in Miami, it wanted to go for a walk too.


"Francesca!",  I cried to my sleeping wife, "You gotta come out and see this!"   Moments later she stumbled out and said, "That hat looks great.  Did you pick it out?".  "No!", I explained, "It picked me.
It's magic!".

     I wore it to that evening's festive affair, a "pig pickin'".   That's where you pick apart a roasted pig with your right hand while holding a beer in your left. 

 As I posed for this picture with brother Bruce the bride-to-be walked by and commented, "Nice hat!"

The darn thing must have had ears (and wings!) as it shot off my head and landed on Lauren's. 

 When Francesca said something similar it jumped to her head.



When Lauren's fiance, Vince, saw it and said, "I wish I had a hat like-" it bounced over to him before he could finish his sentence.


This went on for hours.  Like a friendly dog, the magic hat visited all of the folks that you see below.

 The next day's wedding was perfect.  

Afterwards we partied

We posed.

But like the dog, we had to leave the hat at home.

Weddings have their own magic. 



I'd like to thank, 1) My niece Lauren, and her husband, Vince, for inviting us to their wedding (8-25-12), and,
2) Our friend, Mary Guynn, for letting us borrow her family's cabin and her father's magical hat.

Monday, August 20, 2012


 We returned from Venezuela last month with our camera packed with pictures.  Here are a few more including
The Amazing Headless Accordion Player

The hotel Uncle Tomas designed in 1954.

 For bread fans that hate the crust

 Atop La Avila

Restaurant hand washing stand

Things can happen when you are stuck at an airport for thirteen hours.