Impressions of Prague

Flying into Prague over the Vltava River

Flying into Prague over the Vltava River

This is our first visit to a city we know of but do not know, and we have just one October weekend to make its acquaintance.

The Vltava River is the eye-catcher as we fly in.

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The Reunion – Walking the Talk in Extremadura, Spain

Walking in Extremadura in the spring of 2018

Walking in Extremadura in the spring of 2018

Seven of us – female, and last together decades ago at school in Zimbabwe – leave our lives in England, South Africa, Spain, France and Australia, and head off for a week’s reunion in Extremadura.

The plan, born from a cyber whim, somehow, suddenly becomes real.

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Hello 2019! Apologies for abandoning 2018 without a note…

My apologies for the silence. The end of the year in London was such a rush that I failed to post a note on The Phraser about where I would be over Christmas and the New Year.

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To Paris, France for the day

The rendezvous outside the Louvre - Paris, France

The rendezvous outside the Louvre – Paris, France

Any chance you can join us?”  A message from an American friend pings into my in-box.  Hmmm?

There’s sensible … and then there’s Paris.  Even if only for a day.

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Hotel Beau Site, Talloires … and a rendezvous

The rendezvous - the garden of the Hotel Beau Site in Talloires

The rendezvous – the garden of the Hotel Beau Site in Talloires

We had a rendezvous to arrange … and it had to be perfect.

Our final choice was the Hotel Beau Site in Talloires.  It looked beautiful on its website – more like an old, elegant home than a hotel – and, more important, it had grounds that seemed to lead down to a private beach on a pristine lake.

The bad news – it was a self-promoting hotel an easy drive from of some the most famous ski slopes in Europe.  Surely a web-trap?

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What to do when air traffic control goes wrong

Not going anywhere.

Not going anywhere.

I am an infrequent, economy class flyer still in wonder at the impossibly of it all.  Last weekend I had a new experience.

We had been told that the flights we were due to take were headed into trouble – a general strike in Italy.  My son was on a British Airways (BA) afternoon flight scheduled to leave shortly after mine and the travel agent’s advice to both of us was that all would be well as Italy would be back at work by the evening.

In the end it was as I buckled in that the delay was announced.  Suddenly optimism vanished into a mix of flat light, long stranded hours and these few lessons learned:

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The end of the world – Sagres

The car door wrenches open. Wind swirls in flapping us out in a cling of hats and cameras towards the lighthouse at Cabo St Vincente – the south-westerly tip of Europe, of the Sagres Peninsular in Portugal.

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