Fall from grace

After a summer in which one controversy followed another, Nicolas Sarkozy upset a European summit with a lunch-time row with European Commission President José Manuel Barosso.Read more

This month: Dinner and a show

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Hey Rico, how are you?" "Hi gorgeous, just delicious." (Cue blushing and giggling).Read more

That all important energy performance certificate

The importance of the energy performance certificate which, since November 2006, must be attached to property sale documents either at the preliminary contract stage (compromis) or when the sale is completed (acte authentique) will go one stage further, and an earlier one at that, at the beginning of next year.Read more

The impossible art of fish stew

“C'est pas tes oignons”, meaning “none of your business”, is what I thought when I started looking into the art of the Mediterranean fish stew, bouillabaisse.Read more

A princess behind the bar and Bardot next door

Being a relatively normal person living on the Riviera, I can be left open-mouthed by the extraordinary things I see whilst other people barely raise an eyebrow.Read more

A strange encounter of the emergency kind

At the start of this month, I was quite sure that nothing more dramatic was going to happen to me than turning 30. Then the roof started to fall down around me and I was forced to change my mind.Read more

The joys of Cliquot and chicken

Perusing the menu on the sun-drenched rooftop of the Hotel Aston in Nice, I decided to take a break from the Rosé IV I have been hooked up to for the past two months and order champagne. It did seem a little decadent for a not-too-spectacular Tuesday afternoon but as Oscar Wilde said "Only the unimaginative can fail to think of a reason for drinking champagne".Read more

This is not what it seems

At the weekend I discovered a most beautiful place. You drive towards Sospel, turn off at an unmarked road and continue up, up, up until there’s nowhere left to go. From here, the view - of the undulating valley and hilltop terracotta villages perched above the sea - momentarily stands you still.Read more

Olive oil: the elixir of (good) life

Everytime I visit my friend's villa it is a serene reminder of what drew me to Provence.Read more

Above and beyond the boundries of bureaucracy

Recently, I’ve had a few run-ins with French bureaucracy. Now, I know it’s easy to find fault with most bureaucratic systems (don’t even get me started on the DVLA) however, the French seem to go above and beyond when it comes to making official procedure as complicated as humanly possible… not to mention painfully frustrating, humiliating and rude.Read more