A few years ago when I first started thinking about what to do when I turned 50 and my kids left home, I came up with the FOT – the Festival of Tina. For some reason the local children call me Tina and this name has stuck. The FOT was […]

Lost and found

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The Festival of Tina is not like a typical Australian 18 year old’s gap year, where you leave a trail of destruction across the globe. I’m more mature than that. Instead I’ve left a trail of stuff around the world. In fact I’ve lost so many things I can’t actually […]

I’m fluent!

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After four weeks in a beautiful location but with sub-par weather, I was thrilled to spend my final few magical days in France, in springtime Paris with my BFR and her husband. We walked, ran and even cruised the Seine, and of course continued our study of French… wine. Let’s […]

Au revoir la maison noire


So today my BFR and I skipped school and ran away from home.  Yesterday we finished the four week program and we were supposed to return this morning to take a test that would show us how much (or little!) we had learned. We would finish off the week with […]

Choose your own adventure

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As you know I like to take a saying and make it my own. I have many of them. One of my favourites has always been: You can choose your own adventure OR have it foisted upon you. Nothing that has happened on my trip so far has made me […]

Danger of morte and merde

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The two main dangers in France are death… and stepping in dog shit. I’ve been living here in Villefranche-sur-Mer for nearly two weeks now and I’m shocked that I am still alive. I’m even more shocked that my shoes are clean. It’s time for a short French lesson. It is […]

Je suis française

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All of the travelling thus far has brought me to this point. I am now officially French. Just ask anyone here… except my teacher. I chose this course in the magnificent town of Villefranche-sur-Mer, which is next to Nice on the French Riviera, because it came highly recommended. A dear […]

Give up on your dreams, Susan

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If you know me, you know that I love Melissa McCarthy. She is hilarious. So as I was walking down another charming street in yet another medieval village, feeling inexplicably despondent, I started giggling. “Give up on your dreams, Susan,” I said out loud. It’s a quote from the movie […]

C’est la vie

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Just before I left New York, I had a moment of panic. All this time I had been planning and dreaming about this trip to France and it was about to come to fruition. I was suddenly scared. Maybe I should just go home? Luckily changing your ticket is harder […]

I’m in a New York State of Mind


When you get the call up for a night out in NYC from one of your favourite nieces, it seems churlish not to attend. Nieces (and nephew – yes that is you, Miles), I love you all equally, but no one but Eliza developed her own special soccer game that […]

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