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Oooooh Vienna! Halloween im Wien – pumpkins, every witch way

In Vienna, Halloween is about pumpkins. If you're a fan, it's the perfect place to be - what Austrians can't do with pumpkins simply can't be done. If you get a chance to lay your hands on a bottle of Kürbiskernöl – pumpkin seed oil,…
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The sweet taste of Halloween

American Halloween is about, yes, all things American; pumpkins and parades, Trick or Treat, getting dressed-up and getting made-up. In the UK, Halloween is about importing all things American, but isn't nearly as much fun… …and…

Notre Dame de la Garde, Marseille: The Good Mother

The ornate gold mosaic is typical of (Neo) Byzantine architecture, which was popular during the mid-late 19th century; cf London's Westminster cathedral. Notre Dame de la Garde (Our Lady of the Keeper) dominates the city's skyline and…

Snow tomorrow

Walthamstow Central rail station, February 2009, when a cold snap shut down most of London for a couple of days.

Go to the ant…

At the Gorges de Pennafort, Provence, we made camp (unwittingly) in the path of some huge but otherwise harmless ants.  Relaxing in the company of these creatures is impossible — their industriousness is of truly biblical proportions: Go…
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From the belfry

View of the terracotta-tiled roofs of the city from the belfort, or medieval belfry, Bruges.
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Shades of the Beguine

Bruges is a strangely sinister little town, with deep houses and twitching net curtains. As the sun sets, shadows lengthen and night begins to fall, a strong sense of the gothic creeps across the town.
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My Kingdom for a Horse

For those of you who watch Heroes, Ventimiglia will be an Italo-American, all-flying, all-teleporting, multi-purpose dreamboat called Milo, who sports a razor-sharp jaw and flawless skin. For the rest of you, it's a one-horse town on the Franco-Italian…
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Fun-paqued cooking from the Middle Ages

The Échaudé takes its name from the French and means, literally, "scalded". Hurled briefly into boiling water before being thrown into a hot oven, this Easter speciality (hence the awful pun) hails from the Middle Ages, in whose times…
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Tardivo magnifico: worth the wait

Radicchio tardivo is a subspecies of chicory, and owes its striking colour to Francesco van den Borr, Belgian agronomist and inventor of the imbianchiamento technique, which uses scalding spring water to transform the colour of the leaves.…