Welcome to my world! My name's Nik, and I'm a British expatriate who has been living in Paris, France for the last five years. Even though I never planned to stay in Paris for very long, now I'm here I've no plans to leave soon - the beauty of Paris has never worn off, and so far it's been a five year long vacation! Enjoy my ramblings...

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Back from hols, or rentrée as they call it here (literally re-entry). The fact that the french have a special name for just shows how synchronised everyone's holidays are here. Start of August, big traffic queues, empty city, then tumbleweeds a-blowing around for a bit, and then whoomph, more traffic queues, well tanned full city.

It's not quite as severe as that, but not far off. Certainly many companies shut down and enforce the August break, even if just for a week. Then everyone gets back, and if the news is anything to go by, everyone has to get down to the shops and kit out their children with several thousand euros worth of pens and rulers. Why they can't use the old ones I've no idea, but considering how the rest of the time France is totally uncommercial, this seems a remarkable coup by Bic or pencilcases-R-Us.

Anyway, I'm back. Actually I was back a week ago, but fell into horrible amounts of work while switching webhost, which meant I couldn't post anything even if I did have something to say (which I didn't, all I could manage was velo-boulot-wino-dodo).

Hopefully sometime soon I'll put my photos of Turkey up on the webpage somewhere - between all of us who went we've over a thousand pics (digital cameras - surely the slideshow bore's wet dream!). Turkey was fantastic, despite all the dire warnings of bombs and terrorists. Admittedly some of the warnings were borne out after we left, but there was little sign of any unrest (ok, we were stopped by the military police at one point, but I think it was because we were speeding just a teensy-weensy bit over the speed limit, um kindof). Before we went we checked out the british embassy site there for details on the visa required, and it was covered with all sorts of scary warnings. Hardly surprising that there were *no* americans there.

Ok, still brain-dead from this work actually. Next posting will have more on Turkey once I've got some photos up...