Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pet sitting, another way to go

This year we received a curious email:  would we be interested in looking after 4 cats while the owners could be away for a sailing holiday.  They had seen our listing on the seniors home exchange website and were just interested in having us look after their darlings without a house swap. It took us all of 5 minutes to reply in the affirmative.  As a result we spent two wonderful weeks in Paris at the beginning and end of our stay and 4 weeks in the Basque region of France near Biarritz.   The pussies were gone during the day, giving us a chance to explore the incredible countryside near St. Pee sur Nivelle during the day and learn about a way of life we had not known before.


This was the view from our window

A view of Biarritz


A colourful service at the 15th century church at St. Pee sur Nivelle
Not bad in exchange for looking after cats don't you think?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Home Exchange, the Way to Go

Thursday, January 28, 2010

More about the children of Turkey

When visiting a country, there is always the temptation to romantisize the experience, to exaggerate the positive and ignore the negative.  But there is something about the children of Turkey that continues to fascinate me.  Even in the poorest of villages or slums of the city, they are always ready to meet you with their wonderful spontaneity.  Just look at the picture of the teens below:  there is no sulleness, no "whatever" attitude, only a willingness to meet a stranger with a refreshing openess and spontaneity. 



Monday, January 4, 2010

Turkey and its Children

One of our lasting memories of Turkey are its people and especially the children.  Nowhere, even in the poorest areas of city or village, did we see sullen or unhappy children.