My love affair with the Loire Valley began the very first time I visited Saint-Martin-le-Beau, a commune resting near the banks of the River Cher in central France. It was a cold evening in January and the rain slopped across my windshield as I navigated my rental car over the train tracks that run parallel …

It’s hard to know what to do on a death anniversary. One never really knows when grief will claw its way out of its carefully contained space in the heart and squeeze, but there is a strong likelihood that a “first” will bring with it an increased dose of that familiar feeling of loss. For …