How To Be A Square

I find that highly….. illogical, Captain.

-Spock: Star Trek

The French have a word for it. They always do. Their word to describe logical thinking is “cartésien” an adjective derived from the surname of René Descartes, the French philosopher, whose most famous utterance was “Je pense, donc je suis,” translated into English as “I think, therefore I am.” Continue reading


Portus Magnus

I breathed the air of history all unaware, and walked oblivious through its littered layers.

-Annie Dillard

Our house, the Villa Robineau, had been built by a pied noir family in the early twentieth century on a cliff separated from the sea by a narrow strip of land.  It was the most imposing house in the small village of Bethioua, and had been built in the Anglo-Norman style, with a gabled slate roof and long, lugubrious windows. Continue reading

Couscous With Butter And Sugar

Sometimes we survive by forgetting.


“Where on earth is he?” I muttered to myself, pacing up and down the house, from the bedroom — where our new-born son was sleeping peacefully in his cot — to the living-room and back again, as if I wanted to wear a path along the tiled corridor. Continue reading