Yes, Mass Shootings Are Caused by Guns

  An article by Max Fisher and Josh Keller appeared in the November 7 New York Times that explains convincingly why the US has so many mass shootings: A graphic at the top of the article points out that "The United States has 270 million guns and had 90 mass shooters from 1966 to 2012;… Continue reading Yes, Mass Shootings Are Caused by Guns

Cesky Krumlov

The countryside from Salzburg to Cesky Krumlov offers splendid scenery. We stayed at the Zlaty Andel Hotel on the main "Square of Concord" in the city center. Inhabited at least since the bronze age, in medieval times Cesky Krumlov was the chosen home for a series of noble families who dominated the country for centuries: the Vitkovec, Rozmberk, Habsburg, Eggenburg, and… Continue reading Cesky Krumlov


    The border between the Czech Republic and Austria offered a sharp contrast. The highway and the surroundings changed instantly on crossing, reflecting the relative wealth of Austria, and the long economic doldrums suffered by the Czechs under Soviet domination. Once on the Austrian side, we noticed even country houses were in excellent repair, often… Continue reading Salzburg

Paris 2004

The bus ride from Rouen did not take long. We drove through La Défense to the Porte de Clichy where our hotel was located. In the evening, after dinner at the hotel, most of us took the subway to look around the Champs Elysses. At the Porte de Clichy metro station I was attacked by two pickpockets as I… Continue reading Paris 2004

Chenonceau, Tours, Angers

In June of 2004 we went on a singing tour to France. Concerts were to take place in Tours, Mont St Michel, The American Military Cemetery at Colleville, Rouen, and Paris. Along the way we stopped in Chenonceau, Angers, St Malo, Dinan, and Caen. Our tour guide picked us up at Charles De Gaulle airport and we left… Continue reading Chenonceau, Tours, Angers

Viet Nam Remembered

We have been watching Ken Burns and Lynn Novick's documentary on the Viet Nam war. It is painful to revisit this horrible story. However, the very first installment taught us a lot about the long history behind western involvement in that country. Fear of communism contaminated the viewpoint of the USA and caused our government to support the French, and… Continue reading Viet Nam Remembered

A Cloudy Day in Paris

What can you do on a cloudy day in Paris? There are many answers! We saw a few historic sites that are not on the A-list, and we took a tour on the Seine, offered by the Vedettes du Pont Neuf. While waiting to board we discovered the memorial to Jaques DeMolay, burned in 1314 in what is… Continue reading A Cloudy Day in Paris

Paris, 2007 – The Unexpected Apartment

Our apartment in Paris was bigger than any others we had rented from our agents. Located on a quiet avenue in the 7th arrondissment, it was nonetheless very convenient to the Ecole Militaire Metro station. With two bedrooms, bath, kitchenette and salle de séjour, it was well equipped with a dishwasher, clothes washer, and microwave… Continue reading Paris, 2007 – The Unexpected Apartment