Hey everyone! So I’m officially back in France, and I have to say it’s been hard re-acclimating. I’m homesick and wish I had stayed in the U.S. a bit longer – I’m finding I really miss my family and my puppy.

That being said, there have been a few highlights so far, most especially seeing the Edward Hopper exhibit at the Grand Palais; we booked those tickets two months in advance and it was worth the wait! I couldn’t choose my favorite picture this week so which shot do you like best?

Photo A

Hopper Exhibit

The Hopper exhibit at the Grand Palais was fantastic; I’ve loved Hopper’s work since I was a little kid so it was a treat to see many of his paintings.

I also love single-artist exhibitions because you can see the full evolution of the painter’s style, as well as learn about his life story. Fun facts I learned? Hopper was nearly 6’5”, lived in France for a time and spoke fluent French and received lots of inspirations from the Dutch masters, whose use of light particularly inspired him.

Photo B


The return of my Parisian partner in crime also cheered me up. This is the view from her subway stop – jealous? I am.

Photo C

Galettes des Rois

In January in France you will see les galettes des rois, or king’s cakes, in every bakery window. The tradition is very fun and involves hiding until tables – post soon!

 Photo D

Zinc bar

I am writing a travel column for a local Detroit newspaper and thus have been running around Paris reviewing restaurants and cafés. With the chalkboard, zinc bar and Perrier in this shot, it struck me as very French. I guess I really am back!

Also I wanted to share with you a video that really inspired me. I think it might inspire you too.

“Forget the money. If you say that getting the money is the most important thing, you will spend your life completely wasting your time. You’ll be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing. Which is stupid.”

How was your week? How are you handling the post-holidays blues?

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Ashley Fleckenstein

Ashley is an American travel blogger and freelance writer who moved to Paris at 21, traveled the world for a year and now lives in Denver. She's usually in pursuit of skiing, languages and perfectly ripe cheese. Her writing has been featured in National Geographic, Viator and Jetstar Australia.
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