The Nightingale: A Book Review

“The Nightengale” by Kristin Hannah is a story of two women in war. It is also a tale of a country torn in two. It happened quickly. On May 9, 1940, life in France was normal. People shared carafes of wine in the cafés of Paris and kids laughed among the vineyards of the …

Prague from the Charles Bridge

Visiting the Jewish Quarter of Prague can be overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be logistically overwhelming. Here’s the easiest way to visit Prague’s Jewish Quarter and a bit of background on this little neighborhood with lots of history. Prague’s Jewish Quarter: Layers of History Prague is home to one of the oldest recorded …

Ravensbruck Nazi Death Camp

There was a Nazi concentration camp built just for women. Ravensbrück sits on the shore of a picturesque lake in northern Berlin, the beauty of the scenery belying the horror that once reigned there. Unlike other camps, Ravensbrück was not built specifically for Jewish prisoners. It was built to hold about 6,000 female prisoners …

Château de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley

All you need to know before you go to the best château in the Loire Valley: A visit to France’s Loire Valley is truly incomplete without a visit to Château de Chenonceau. I was first attracted to the Loire Valley because of the Loire River, which served as the demarcation line in central France during WWII. …

What was once a cafe in Oradour-sur-Glane

First, brace yourself. Visiting Oradour-sur-Glane today is not visiting a place; it is visiting a place in time. Oradour-sur-Glane is preserved to look exactly as it did after the smoke cleared on June 10, 1944, revealing the charred remains of a village as well as the remains of nearly all of its inhabitants. Once …

Le Pigeonnier Restaurant in the Loire

The first time that 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 to town. Because it was nighttime, I …