Christmas Traditions in Provence: The Little Saints

Christmas Traditions in Provence: The Little Saints

Of all the Provençal Christmas traditions that Mr. TWS and I learned about during our France trip last December, the santons (“little saints”) impressed us the most. We came away with an appreciation for the art and craft of these clay figurines created by santonniers and for their importance in the culture as a tradition passed down through generations.

European Capital of Culture: Highlights of Marseille

European Capital of Culture: Highlights of Marseille

“Marseille is a way of life”. It’s the playing of pétanque (similar to bocce), the imbibing of pastis (an anise liqueur developed in Marseille as a substitute for the banned absinthe in 1915), the savoring of Bouillabaisse (for which Marseille is famous), and a certain “joie de vivre”. It is also a way of life that embraces the diversity of this melting pot on the Mediterranean and its rich culture, history, and art — giving an ample number of reasons for its designation as a 2013 European Capital of Culture.