A dedicated Francophile’s perspective on all things French from an expat Aussie living in France. Ray's perspective is beyond the clichés, viewing the fascinating and often never-before-heard-of angles helping the reader gain a deeper understanding of the 'real' France. 'Perspectives' shares refreshing and sometimes shocking views of places, people, history, culture, gastronomy, and much, much more —you’ll never be underwhelmed.

French Elections: Seconds Out — Round Three

The two National Assembly weekends of voting signals little cheer for Macron as he faces the final battle on Sunday.

You, me, and Napoleon: We all had trouble speaking French - what's your experience?

These four articles about learning French will ruffle a few feathers. That’s because my essays are full of subjective statements about how bloody hard French is to learn. This is especially so, I point out, for anyone not lucky enough to be young and locked up in a garret in Paris with a French lover—with the deliberate intention of doing nothing else but learn French.

Two cheers for President Macron

Touch & Go? There’s still the “Third Round” legislative elections to renew the Assemblée Nationale, scheduled for 12 & 19 June.

Europe holds its Breath: the future of France

Many of France’s 48 million voters — especially those on the left — are asking themselves what the least bad option is. Or would it be better to simply stay at home and ignore both candidates in the decisive second round?

Rudolf Nureyev — life, loves, and the KGB

Born on a train in Eastern Siberia on March 17, 1938, Rudolf Nureyev, a young Tartar became a stupendous dancer.

Macron, and Putin, and Ukraine: can 'jaw jaw' ever stop 'war war'?

no one wanted to call it what it is... a 'flashpoint' an 'impasse' a 'crisis.' And finally a war it is.

Call of the Pyrénées: unveiling the intrigue and magic #1

An insider series that is stacked with intriguing facts and enticing reasons for visiting the Pyrénées.

Advice from a Melbourne pub: France for Christmas – leave the stockings at home

Don't be the turkey this year! I overheard some great advice on spending Christmas in France
 Melbourne, France

Carcassonne et tout ça — what's your view?

The easy way out is to hope & pray that none of this leads back to the yellow badges of Carcassonne and WWII

Versailles to Glasgow — lot's of hot air

A tale of 2 world conferences 100 years apart — and 2 pandemics that went with them.