Archive for August, 2011

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Live the Language

Time for another video break.

Learn some basic French, but really just “oh” and “ah” at the cuteness.

I’m off to Berlin tomorrow. Looking forward to experiencing a new city. (And kind of trying to escape the rentree. September – ack!)

See y’all when I get back!


New Website!

Hello friends,

I am delighted to unveil my new website today:

Unveil makes it sound like I’ve had this in the works for awhile. Actually, as is my way, I just woke up yesterday and decided, gosh darn it, I need a real website. So I did it!

It’s been in the back of my mind for awhile. I love this blog, but it doesn’t encompass all of my writing work. I wanted a more professional place to showcase my full portfolio – and to send potential new clients. After all, I talk about all my faux pas and odd little quirks on here. I hope my personality shines through all of my work, but I don’t necessarily need my beauty blunders and bathrobe attire to be the first thing people learn about me.

I considered hiring someone to build my website. It’s so important to invest in oneself. But, it’s also totally empowering to do things yourself. So yesterday I set out to do just that. I’m pretty happy with the results. I’m no designer, but I think it provides a clear overview of all of my different projects. I think I was able to make it look like a website rather than a blog, too. I love teaching myself new things!

It’s the final week of August, so Parisians’ vacations are winding down. The full-on buzz of the rentree is just around the corner. This felt like my nod to the busy upcoming season. Projects galore are in store!

Don’t worry, though: I’ll still be here recounting my silly little tales for your amusement. The blog’s not going anywhere!

Check out my new website and feel free to let me know what you think:

Do you have new projects on which you’re embarking? Tell me about them!

Rest in Peace

Back in December, I talked about Tim, a college classmate who was fighting ALS (Lou Gherig’s Disease) and inspiring a whole awareness campaign in the process.

This morning, surrounded by family and friends, Tim passed away.

Today more than ever I am thinking about what matters. Tim was an incredible person and the loving response from community to his illness bore witness to the powerful good of the human spirit. We hear so many disheartening stories in this world, that sometimes we need reminders of that fact.

Tim and his Often Awesome Army turned his scary diagnosis and daily trials into something that transformed and touched many lives. I have been humbled and awed by their journey.

It can never be said too many times: love, kindness, compassion – this is what we need to hold onto. Every day is precious. Live each one to the full.

RIP, Tim. Holding all who loved him in the light.

The trailer for the award-winning web series that followed Tim and his wife Kaylan as they fought ALS:

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Street Scene

Paris feels so relaxed. I still claim August as my favorite month.

Everyone (who’s still in the city) is out and about, finally enjoying the rare run of sun…including this guy:

I can’t tell you his story, only that he was good-natured in letting me take his photo.

In the brief moment of exchange I couldn’t tell whether he was homeless or just a character. Two little kids took him to be a character with that long gray beard and interesting attire and started talking to him. He jovially played the part for them.

In any case, it was almost too much to take in before he rode off again. (Is that an IV drip bag?)

And the sign in back reading poesie (poetry)? Definitely intriguing.

Volleyball at the Hotel de Ville

Finally, a real summer day!

It’s a holiday here in France, too, so people are especially happy. Good timing!

Faux Pas Friday: Washing Machine Woes

Wringer en centrifuge / Wringer and centrifuge

I knew it was a bad sign when I heard the washing machine start making horrible noises as it hit the spin cycle. I realized it was even worse when I walked into the kitchen and smelled an electrical burn.

Panic isn’t exactly the word as my heart didn’t start racing or my palms start sweating. As I stood watching the vibrating machine, I thought, ok, that’s not good. (Good start – state the obvious. Maybe I had the part of panic where you stop being able to think).

Hmm, electrical smell, I continued ruminating. Electrical fires are different than normal fires, right? How does one put out an electrical fire should this thing become engulfed in flame? I know it’s not water, but I don’t have any baking powder.

By this point, my Smokey the Bear fire safety training is obviously failing me. So instead I turn to this line of questioning: Is it ok to just pull the plug or is that a dangerous move if unsure whether an appliance is about to explode?

Continue reading ‘Faux Pas Friday: Washing Machine Woes’

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: (Non)-Summer in Paris

Sure, Paris can be romantic in the rain.

People probably don’t have this in mind, though:

No one lives in Paris for the weather, but I got to say, skipping over summer is kind of a shame.

I can’t complain today. The sun’s shining. But overall, summer’s been skimpy in these parts. I’ve looked at the extended forecast and the rain’s coming back for the weekend. (It’s best not to look at these things).

Oh well. It does help with the work. August is my month of attack you might remember. And attacking, I am. I’m getting so much done! The freak floods and gray days only give more motivation to stay inside and focused, so I’m grateful for that.

Writer Interview (Me This Time!)

In Auvergne last summer

Janet Skeslien Charles, author of Moonlight in Odessa, was the first author I interviewed on this blog, kicking off one of my favorite features.

Today she’s turned the tables on me. She asked me to dole out some advice, dish on reading and writing, and discuss the challenges and rewards of blogging (hint: I give a shout-out to you as my biggest joy in blogging).

Head on over here to read the interview, if you’d like. (FYI: She starts with a repost of my Franglish article awhile back. Scroll on down if you just want the interview).



And I mean that in the best possible way.

It may be against conventional wisdom, but August is an awesome time to be in Paris. Not if you’re visiting tourist sites and hanging around central areas, mind you. That – with the crowds and general hubbub – is pretty hellacious, in my opinion.

You know what else sounds hellacious? Getting into one of these contraptions then spinning around on the water! I'm getting motion sick just thinking about it!

No, I’m talking August of the resident who stays, the neighborhood lounging, the slower pace. The city is emptying out, many places close for the long vacation.

I love being left behind. The city starts to feel more mine.

I just got home from the hammam (Turkish bath). There was practically no one there. I sauntered from sauna to steam room to the pool and had it all to myself. So relaxing!

Afterward, I strolled down to the Canal de L’Ourcq to see what this year’s Paris Plages looked like. Again, not the beach along the Seine, the main artery of Paris Plages. The outpost in the 19th is more subdued – and more my speed.

Continue reading ‘August….Attack!’

paris (im)perfect?

Sion Dayson is paris (im)perfect. Writer, dreamer, I moved to France on – no exaggerating – a romantic whim. As you can imagine, a lot can go wrong (and very right!) with such a (non)plan. These are the (im)perfect stories that result.

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