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NewsletterMarch 2012

Natural Ice Sculpture

This photo was taken in Yvoire on Lake Geneva during the cold wave that hit France and Europe this winter. Thanks to a steady wind and the sub freezing temperatures there was good ice build up that created quite a few natural sculptures. You can see more photos (and a video) from Yvoire and the nearby village of Messery.

The Artist

Here's one bit of The Artist trivia you probably didn't know about. This isn't the first time star and Oscar winner, Jean Dujardin played in a movie set in America. He played the lead roll in the 2009 live action edition of Lucky Luke. Dujardin played Lucky Luke, the wild west cowboy, who can shoot faster than his shadow.
Another bit of trivia, Dujardin won an Oscar but he didn't win a César - the French Oscar. Dujardin lost out to Omar Sy, who became the first black to win a César for his role in Intouchables. The movie focuses on the relationship between a male nurse and his quadriplegic aristocrat patient. Overall The Artist did better at the Césars winning six awards (including best picture and best actress) to five at the Oscars.

Podcast

A first: I've tried my hand at Podcasting. You can hear my first endeavor. I talk with good friend and follow American, Teresa Kaufman. Teresa lives in Chamonix not far from me.

2012 Presidential Election

President Nicolas Sarkozy officially announced his candidacy in mid February. Earlier than he would have liked but necessary because of his low poll numbers. If reelected in May, Sarkozy would go down as pulling off one of the greatest comebacks in recent political history.
Sarkozy probably wishing he had announced even earlier: his poll numbers started moving steadily up once he made it official. He's now running just a few percentage points behind front runner Fran├žois Hollande, in first round polls. Hollande is still running comfortably ahead in the decisive second round.
Sarkozy hit the ground running. He started out dominating the discourse by announcing a number of a initiatives including a referendum on unemployment benefits and proportional representation for parliamentary elections. Sarkozy is France's best proven campaigner and five years as president hasn't slowed him down. Whether it will be enough to overcome his unpopularity remains to be seen.
I put together a series of short video presentations about the election and candidate political platforms.

Spring Reading

LIVING LIKE A LOCAL: Stories of Our Life in France, by Shelley Row - Many dream of living abroad but Shelley and her husband, Mike, did it. They left the security of their careers, the comfort of their home, and the familiarity of their neighborhood and moved to France . From their house on the hillside overlooking the village in Provence, they lived like a local and soaked up all that life had to offer.
from SoCal to Picardie, by Kristina Ledesma-Davies - The funny and not so funny day-to-day life of a Cali Latina living in a foreign country. By foreign, she means outside of Southern California.

Misc

Improve Your Fitness in the South of France with Potential Energy a qualified health and fitness specialist that offers fitness breaks on the Ariege/Aude border (near the Pyrenees).
Expats don't forget to request your absentee ballot!.
Restopolitan Eat great food in Paris and get one free meal for each reservation with Card Restopolitan.

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