This site is no longer being updated. If you'd like to read more about what I'm up to these days please visit Steve and Carole in Vence.

Recto Verso by Zaz

Amazon France

May 27th, 2014

I thought it might be fun to order some CDs from Amazon while I’m here in France. I opened an account on and I used my French credit card. I found some CDs that were on special, buy three for 15€, which is about $6.82 each, a good deal any way you look at it. At home in the US we have Amazon Prime where we pay a yearly fee and get, among other things, free two day shipping. Amazon France offered me 30 days of Amazon Prime free … [more]

Steve Wilkison - French Carte Fidélités

French “Carte Fidélités”

June 20th, 2013

In Nashville most of the grocery stores have little store “cards.” They are the size of a credit card, though everyone also has smaller versions which you can add to your keychain. They’re free and when you check out, if you give them your card to scan, you qualify for any discounts or sales that may be happening. Without the card, you don’t get the sale price or discount on anything. Turns out that France is no different. I noticed the other day, while shopping for groceries at the local … [more]

Steve Wilkison - Eggs In France

Eggs In France

June 1st, 2012

I bought some fresh eggs today from a woman with a small stand in the morning market that sets up almost every morning in the big square outside my apartment, Le Jardin Grande (The Big Garden). They were expensive, 2.85 euros for six eggs. That’s about $3.54 in US Dollars right now or around $7.00 a dozen. Way, way more than I would ever pay for eggs in the US. But, damn, they were good eggs! Maybe the best I’ve ever had. Big and rich, with dark orange yolks. I’m … [more]

Steve Wilkison - Patisserie: Nougatine

Patisserie: Nougatine

June 20th, 2010

Anyone who knows me knows that I love French patisseries. In fact, the only time I ever eat sweets is when I’m in France. That’s right, I go for an entire year with no sweets of any kind and then when I get to France I go crazy with patisseries. Today’s French patisserie is nougatine (Miel, Amandes) from La Tourrettoise in Vence (one of the better Patisseries in Vence). A tastey square piece of flakey crust with a layer of honey and several layers of almond slices. In general, I’ve … [more]

Steve Wilkison - Nice & Vence

Nice & Vence

June 18th, 2010

Arrived in Nice around 1:00 in the afternoon about three hours later than when I was scheduled to arrive, so overall not so bad. I checked with baggage people there and they told me my bike and bag would be coming in that afternoon around 3:00 or 3:30. Great news, as the London folks had told me they wouldn’t arrive until the next day! I headed over to Terminal 2 to pick up my car at Europcar. There was a very long line, but fortunately it moved at a reasonable … [more]

Steve Wilkison - London Airport

London Airport

June 18th, 2010

So we arrived late at the London airport. Of course. I had an hour and 10 minute layover here in London before my flight to Nice, which is not a lot of time at all when you’re coming in on an international flight. By the time I was able to get off the plane, travel through the various terminals, go through security yet again and make it to the gate my plane was gone. The ticket agent said something about trying to get me on an upcoming flight (seeming to … [more]

Miami Airport

Miami Airport

June 17th, 2010

Well, this is not good. Just as we were about to land in Miami the pilot aborted the landing and took us to Ft. Lauderdale instead. Apparently sudden winds at ground level had made it unadvisable to land. Now normally they would just circle around awhile until it was safe to land, but, as the pilot explained, we had used up all of our fuel flying around storms between Nashville and Miami. So, off to Ft. Lauderdale we went to refuel. We were on the ground there about an hour … [more]

Steve Wilkison - Nashville Airport

Nashville Airport

June 17th, 2010

So far, so good at the Nashville airport. Checked in fine. An extra $60 for my bike, which is much cheaper than I’ve paid before. Previous years it has been anywhere from $120 to $225. Of course, they wanted to open my carefully packed bike, which is always a drag. Luckily, the woman doing the inspection couldn’t figure out how to close the box so she let me come behind the counter and close and secure it, so I feel OK about it now. Flight was supposed to leave at … [more]

Steve Wilkison - Orangina Ad


September 12th, 2009

I don’t know what it is about this drink, but I’ve never found anything that refreshes me better and faster during or after a long ride than Orangina. I can drink a full 12oz can in a few seconds, literally. It’s delicious, it goes down smooth and easy and it really quenches my thirst. I first discovered Orangina during my first trip to France in 1973 and I really only drink it when I’m in France, but when I’m there I drink a LOT of it. It’s a lot like … [more]

Les Wooldridge

Les Is Out

June 18th, 2009

Well, my main cycling buddy, Les just emailed and said he is going to have to bow out of the France cycling trip because of really bad back pain that has developed in the last few days. We leave in just a few hours! I knew Les had been having some back problems over the last few days, but I really thought it would get better enough for him to go. What a drag. This is the fifth trip Les and I would have made to France for cycling and … [more]