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About

I’m a storyteller.  I tell stories. Stories of my home stories of my travels. To be precise, when I started this blog, I was mostly to be spotted in le Cantal, France, between the two great mountain ranges of the Massif Central – Les Monts du Cantal and Le Massif de Sancy which dominate the Auvergne region. Later, I lived in Grenoble the city known  variously as the gateway to, or the capital of, the Alps.  It was a marvellous opportunity to dunk self in a chic little cup of urban French life and in my mind I sashayed elegantly and effortlessly effecting a constant that was so much more hip than hick … the success or failure of this tenure was for others to judge and occasionally  chronicled here for posterity.

For the last couple of years, I have lived in the USA. Massachusetts to be exact. And that’s where the latest chapter in my half-baked life is based. But wanderers wander and ramblers ramble and I am still rootless and searching for roots.

So, I tell of my meanderings, of the people I meet, of their lives, of their kith, their kin and their animals. And I tell of their land.  I tell of things long ago and far away. I tell of things I’ve seen or been. The stories are all real so all I actually do is observe and translate.  My role is l’étrangère fitting in and trying to merge into the background like David Attenborough so as not to startle but rather to witness reality.  Not journalistically, you understand.  I binned the idea of being a journo back in 1980 when as a higher muck-a-muck PA on The Daily Telegraph with delusions of being a reporter it was pointed out to me that I needed to cut my teeth with the rest doing flower shows and funerals for the Toadswallop Gazette or the Gigglespuddle Evening Post …. being a gal-about-town on a fast-track to greatness I quickly moved on from THAT idea.   More like a mediaeval raconteur.  Without the lute or the mismatched tights.

When I started this blog it was to give me a space to write those stories.   Over time, things inevitably develop and alter.  I published my first book, ‘Russians Love Their Children Too’, in France in early 2015 .  And, the intention was to follow it up with more. But in my experience life seldom goes to plan but good intentions abound and despite being blocked like a mighty fouled drain for some while, I am falteringly getting back to writing. This blog provides me a place to be fairly formless – formerly it was a sort of ‘Eat Pray Love’ meets Gertrude Stein on the set of ‘A Year in Provence’ with the cast of ‘Allo Allo’ skulking and bickering in the background … now I’m looking to this great continent to provide the inspiration and it’s proving pleasingly fertile ground. Occasionally, you can expect food, sometimes photographic posts with lyrical or poetic commentary, I might dip back from time to time to a bit about life in France. I’ll give you a random spritz of the actuality of  living in a Foreign land, often by yourself with no buoyancy aids, in a place where no-one speaks your native tongue and you speak theirs ‘comme une vache Espagnole’. And I don’t mean in France …. I will still spin a story or two  your way – old habits die hard  …. now there’s an idea – let’s morph Maria von Trapp  with Bruce Willis.  By George!  I think she’s got it!

So welcome!  Let the feast commence.  You can find a little more about me here

One thing though.  Photographs.   I only use my own and occasionally those taken by friends and family when they are with me and always credited.  I don’t use stock photographs however tempting it might be to gussy the blog up with a fantastic professional picture that is vaguely in context.  Good, bad or indifferent I prefer authenticity.

If you are new to my half-baked world then may I gently suggest a meander through the archives.  My most recent posts all appear in the sliding bar at the top and every single post is archived by date in the side-bar.  The ‘pages’ at the top are a selection of stories covering things  which captivate me – in truth I don’t really know what the difference is between a post and a page – perhaps someone clever might enlighten me though the truth is I tend to do things my own way and so long as I’m not doing any harm I see little value in worry.  HB² is the chemical symbol for my husband with two brains and The Bean is our dog.

Words and photographs are Copyright © Osyth and may not be reproduced without my permission, which I am happy to grant for non-commercial purposes, provided I am credited as the writer and or photographer, with a link to this blog.  To discuss commercial rates use the contact information in the footer.

 

 

391 Comments Post a comment
  1. Great post! Thanks.

    May 3, 2017
    • Thank you Lana … how kind of you to take the time to drop by and comment. I hope I shall see more of you 😊

      May 4, 2017
    • am much enjoying this too 🙂

      May 21, 2017
      • This makes me happy 😊

        May 21, 2017
  2. Lovely words. Lovely photos.

    June 18, 2017
    • YOu are very kind the wonderer …. and welcome – I do hope you will enjoy being part of my half-baked world 😊

      June 18, 2017
  3. Hi Osyth i love this post..the photos are visually stunning. I longed to live in places like that. Sometimes i would joke that i was born and live somewhere else in my past life.
    The story of the nuns you mentioned touched me too. I have really good friend who is a nun..and my eldest has.always talk to me about her desire of entering the convent..
    Its really amazing how someone from the other side of the world would have similar connectiona with me…Amazing!!!

    June 22, 2017
    • I am in awe of this connection. So many things we don’t understand in this life but strive to. That is where the Nuns and the Monks come in, I think. If your daughter has the calling then I hope she will be able to follow it. And your friend? I am in awe of her. Truly.

      June 22, 2017
      • My freind has been in the convent for so long..she actually has made her perpetual vow already..my daughther on the other hand has joined several vocation camps which helped her discern further..as soon as she finish college which is in a few more months she will try to ” search in”..

        June 22, 2017
      • She will find the path that suits her if she is open and I am sure she is 🙂

        June 22, 2017
  4. nice:)

    July 1, 2017
    • Thank you ostendnomadography ((what a splendid moniker)) … that is most kind! 😊

      July 1, 2017
  5. I am elated to meet this blog. Keep blogging to motivate humanity.

    July 4, 2017
    • thank you, Peter … how lovely to of you to stop by and take the time to comment 🙂

      July 4, 2017
  6. You’ve got a beautiful blog going….glad to have found you! 🙂

    July 4, 2017
    • I’m happy to have been found!

      July 9, 2017
  7. Great writing and post

    August 2, 2017
    • Thank you so much, Kurian … that is most kind 😊

      August 2, 2017
      • You are welcome

        August 2, 2017
      • YOU are welcome… to my Half Baked feast. I’m delighted to meet you and hope you won’t be disappointed in my offerings 😊

        August 2, 2017
      • Thank you

        August 2, 2017
  8. It sounds like an interesting life to me. And I am sure you speak French much better than a ‘Spanish Cow’. 🙂
    Good luck with your writing.
    Best wishes, Pete

    August 21, 2017
    • Many thanks, Pete – your good wishes are appreciated. I think in the last four years my French has probably progressed past the point where the cow plays casternets 😉

      August 21, 2017
  9. Great blog you have here. I enjoyed it!

    September 3, 2017
    • That is very kind of you To take the time to drop by, to take the time to comment and to make the comment so, just, good-feeling .. Thank you 🙂

      September 3, 2017
      • Your welcome, it was my pleasure. I’m glad I stumbled upon it🙂

        September 5, 2017
      • 😊

        September 5, 2017
  10. Incredible post! Thanks…Lovely words. Flawless photographs.

    September 5, 2017
    • Thank you , it is kind of you to drop in and take the time to leave a comment. I will explore your blog when I do my triage of new blogs later in the month 🙂

      September 5, 2017
  11. Glad to find you and connect! 🙂

    http://www.dariasdiaries.eu

    September 6, 2017
    • How lovely to meet you Daria! Thank you so much for following me, I hope I don’t disappoint. I generally catch up with new followers blogs on a Sunday, so I look forward to exploring yours too 🙂

      September 6, 2017
  12. Fantastic photos,I love your blog..Long live Dauphinoise Potatoes ( no cheese)

    September 7, 2017
    • Blonkieaka you are far too kind! Thank you so much and yes, all hail the cheeseless Dauphinois!

      September 7, 2017
  13. Great post! Thanks.

    September 9, 2017
    • Too kind! Thank you 😊

      September 9, 2017
  14. Exquisite words. Beautiful photographs.

    September 9, 2017
    • That is extremely kind of you. Thank you so much for taking the time to drop in and comment – I hope to see you again 😊

      September 9, 2017
  15. Beautiful words. Beautiful photographs.

    September 11, 2017
  16. ….and what’s wrong with the Blubberhouses Evening Post? It’s a fine newspaper!

    September 21, 2017
    • On reflection I am certain that was my calling!!!

      September 21, 2017
  17. I was just visiting George’s blog and noticed your comment regarding today being your birthday. So, I thought I’d pop over and wish you a very Happy Birthday, Osyth. You are such a lovely and thoughtful person. Here’s wishing you all good things today and everyday! Happy Birthday! 🎉💗🥂

    September 22, 2017
    • Thank you so much Tonya! That is such a sweet thing to do. I had a lovely day even though I passed it on my own since my husband is back in the US. But The Bean (my dog) helped make it a memorable day and I was touched by the kindness of many, including you xo

      September 23, 2017
  18. Dazzling words. Dazzling photos…Great blog you have here. I delighted in it!

    September 27, 2017
    • Thank you, that is extremely kind 🙂

      September 27, 2017
  19. N #

    Sounds like I am going to enjoy your storytelling.

    September 29, 2017
    • Hello N … how lovely to meet you …. thank you for taking the time to stop by and comment … I really appreciate it 🙂

      September 30, 2017
      • N #

        🙂

        September 30, 2017
  20. Hi Osyth, I have nominated you for the “Get to Know Me Tag”. Feel free to participate if you wish, I know you don’t usually do this but I just wanted to let you know I admire your work and really enjoy reading your stories. Have a wonderful weekend. Lorelle X
    https://amindfultravellerblog.wordpress.com/2017/10/13/get-to-know-me-tag/

    October 13, 2017
    • My profound apologies for taking so long to reply to this. I am genuinely humbled that you, whose blog I adore, has thought to nominate me for this tag. I will get to it – am a little preoccupied with a major project at the moment hence the tumbleweed on the blog but I will, I will and in the meantime I thank you so much, Lorelle … you are a keeper! I hope your are having a lovely weekend and that the week ahead will be full of fun and laughter, peace and content xx

      October 22, 2017
      • No need to apologise lovely. All good. Our lives can be pretty busy especially at this time of year. Thank you for your kind words and a wonderful week to you too. Xx

        October 23, 2017
  21. Hi my friend – just want to drop you a note to let you know that I have nominated you for Blogger Recognition Award. Please check out http://bit.ly/2yyH3h7 Congratulations

    October 21, 2017
  22. Thanks for your visit to my blog and for liking some of my pieces. I can see that you are a traveler as well. I like your writing well and some of your pictures and links are apt and thought provoking. Happy writing and voyages!
    All the best.
    Sarah

    October 31, 2017
    • Thank you Sarah. It was kind of you to pay a visit and take the time to comment. Some of us are just made for moving more than others, I think. Enjoy your voyage!

      October 31, 2017
  23. I’m so pleased to have connected with you and your blog. Such a lovely blog, I feel I have a lot to catch up on and read, I’m looking forward to it.

    November 20, 2017
    • Thank you …. it’s pretty formless much like me but you have stumbled on the very moment that I have decided to blog more frequently as a discipline to beat a malaise that settled a couple of months ago. I love your blog and please don’t feel you have to read mine at all 😊

      November 21, 2017
      • Thank you. Your blog is lovely I’m glad you’ll be writing more as I enjoy reading your posts 😊 happy blogging

        November 21, 2017
      • Thank you so much …. it is time 😊

        November 21, 2017
  24. Hope all is well with you, Fiona. I see your lovely thoughts sprinkled like gifts upon many blogs. You brighten other’s days. xo 🌞❤😊

    November 25, 2017
    • I’m trying to get back to writing regularly…. I’ve been battling the blues a bit but I enjoy interacting with others and making them feel good even though I’m a little sad. I’m a determined soul and I have decided that the only thing to do is post something, however small each day for a month. This may or may not completely pan out but at least if I mostly succeed it should give me the kick I need xo

      November 25, 2017
      • I am so very sorry and do feel you are so kind to go to other blogs (and mine) lifting spirits and spreading joy! Hugs, Robin xo

        November 25, 2017
      • 😊 😘

        November 25, 2017
  25. amazing post. Flawless photographs.

    November 26, 2017
    • Thank you Dealman — most kind 😊

      November 27, 2017
  26. Great Post!

    December 8, 2017
    • Thank you – that is most kind 😊

      December 9, 2017
      • You’re welcome you deserve an appreciation!

        December 10, 2017
  27. Very beautiful words and lovely photos! Would also love reading your thoughts on my latest blog post:
    http://thisissivylla.com/2017/12/christmas-hair-make-guide/

    Love,
    Sivylla

    December 11, 2017
    • Thank you Sivylla…. your words are flattering and kind. I do a triage once a month of new followers and those that have never commented before so I will read your blog then …. when I can concentrate and do it justice 😊

      December 11, 2017
  28. Its a competitive age of blogging and in which you are just superb. Keep going. Also we are the Men’s Clothing Manufacturer. Our Online Store name is Zobello. Please visit once. Thanks

    December 12, 2017
  29. I’m so excited to start reading. I enjoyed this immensely. Especially the pairing of old habits and die hard analogy. Nice job. You have quite a loyal following so there must be a thrill ahead. Ok, off I go to read some archives.

    December 19, 2017
    • Lisa, you get my Gold Stay and diamond studded medal for spotting my favourite line! So lovely to meet you and I hope you find some things to enjoy here 🙂

      December 19, 2017
      • Thanks so much. I already have.

        December 19, 2017
  30. Happy to have chanced by here… & looking forward to read at a more leisurely reflective pace when my time permits. -Robert

    December 22, 2017
    • Hello Robert … how lovely to meet you . Take your time. I have no rules except niceness and respect and in that spirit I wish you the best of the season and the delight that you have chanced upon my place. Kismet? I do hope so!

      December 22, 2017
  31. Forgot to mention: much nicer situation to be half-baked than fully. 🙂

    December 22, 2017
  32. You have a very interesting blog here. I also wonder what your “Russians Love Their Children Too’ book is all about? Anyway, it is nice to get to know your blog.

    February 7, 2018
    • Thank you so much for taking time to stop by and comment …. it is much appreciated. ‘Russians’ is simply a short memoir of my time in Russia in 2014. It was produced as a ‘calling card’ for book stores and libraries in France. I have a handful of copies left but it is no longer in print. I hope that my next book, which is a novel based in France will be on sale later this year. It’s good for my ego to imagine someone might be interested!

      February 7, 2018
      • Me, as someone who is originally from Russia, who is in love with France and who is based in the UK, I can not be NOT interested in your blog lol There should be more blogs like yours on the net – there is nothing more interesting than a mix of cultures and travel experiences.

        February 7, 2018
    • PS: Thank you so much for gracing my blog by following it … I hope I shan’t disappoint you!

      February 7, 2018
  33. a magic storyteller….
    have a nice day

    February 23, 2018
    • Thank you so much, Antonio – je vous souhaite une très belle journée aussi 😊

      February 24, 2018
      • merci beaucoup…très gentil!
        🙂

        February 24, 2018
      • De rien 🙂

        February 24, 2018
    • tu as de beaux cheveux…. 🙂
      bonne dimanche

      February 25, 2018
      • Merci …. tu es trop gentil

        February 25, 2018
      • un câlin affectueux….

        February 25, 2018
      • I’m glad if you should come to read my blog….

        February 25, 2018
  34. Fabulous …. am thoroughly enjoying reading your posts/blogs … I too do not know the difference, but if you have discovered, do let me know! Meanwhile I shall continue happily reading your story. ☀️☀️

    February 24, 2018
    • Ha! Nope – still a mystery here!

      February 25, 2018
  35. how are you?
    is the cold still very strong in Grenoble?

    February 28, 2018
    • Very cold but no snow here – all around in the mountains of course but none in the city. Tomorrow I drive a few hundred km west so I’m hoping the roads will have been cleared. I hope the sun is shining gin Napoli 🙂

      February 28, 2018
      • yes today it was sunny but it’s still cold. Tomorrow may be more snow.
        Thank you for your wonderful work towards the weakest.

        February 28, 2018
      • I simply can’t just walk by. I like sharp sunny days – cold and bright. I would like them less if I had no roof over my head ….

        February 28, 2018
  36. a magic song like you! you’re so right too.
    if you were here, I would hug you hard to make you feel that I think like you

    February 28, 2018
  37. tomorrow will be the International Women’s Day…..best whishes dear Osyth!
    hugs

    March 7, 2018
    • Merci infiniment…. tu es très gentil. Au fait mon mari à arrivé demain donc je suis très heureux

      March 8, 2018
  38. WoW! I never knew Russians loved their children… well, I thought they did but now I’ve discovered you have proved it in print!
    Where, oh where, do I get a copy?? Could you not make it easy and stick it on Kindle?? 😉

    March 15, 2018
    • The book was merely a calling card with a small print run and I did not want to put it on Kindle. I am currently finishing my first novel (‘Russians’ is a simple mémoire) and that will be available on all sources. Perhaps if it does well enough I will reprint the first book 😉 Or you can always visit the Bibliothèque Nationale de France – they certainly have a copy as do several other libraries in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes 🤭

      March 16, 2018
      • My library needs a copy too!
        Please let me know when you do a print rerun… for now, put my name on top of the list! Thanks!! 😉

        March 16, 2018
      • Will do 🙂

        March 16, 2018
  39. Nice post Osyth mam.

    This is my new blog. Pls follow and share this blog.

    What are the benefits of having physical education and sports in India?
    In which way does physical education and sports help?
    Do you think that physical education(in India) must be made a mandatory subject at schools and colleges?
    Are we giving proper attention to physical education and sports?
    Is there a proper way to develop physical education system?

    To read my blog, click on the link below:
    https://krishnac003.wordpress.com/2018/05/02/the-role-of-physical-education-and-sports-in-india/

    May 2, 2018
    • Many thanks Krishna. I will certainly take a look at your blog but I am not at all qualified to answer your questions …. i am certain many will be though!

      May 4, 2018
  40. first of all congratulation for the blog, and want to say thanks for the good starting. Love the blog most.

    May 11, 2018
    • Hello Prabhu – what a lovely thing to say! I’m delighted to ‘see’ you here and hope that you will enjoy more as time goes by 🙂

      May 13, 2018
  41. We are of kindred spirit. I too am a storyteller. I preserve the lives of heroes and villains. I write about science and magic and record life on alien planets as well as in other realms.
    Sounds like you are more into preserving reality while I create adventures from my imagination.
    Yet we were both storytellers. ;0)

    May 19, 2018
    • I must take some time out to explore your blog more fully …. your stories are surely fascinating. I find reality and fantasy are much closer relations than we perhaps first imagine …. storytellers we both are and I raise a glass to the preciousness of preserving the art 🥂

      May 19, 2018
      • I also plan to explore you site. A raised glass to you too. ;0)

        May 20, 2018
      • Santé à bonheur 😊🥂

        May 20, 2018
      • ;0)

        May 21, 2018
  42. Osyth, great to meet you – thanks for visiting my blog. You have a fascinating background and story. Feel free to contribute to #ForgivingFridays if you want to.

    I particularly love how you want to observe life – there is such freedom and love in that. And I also appreciate your value in authenticity. I’m with you!
    Blessings 🙂
    Debbie

    June 3, 2018
    • Thank you. I will certainly contribute when I have something that I think would fit. I tend to be all about tolerance, decency, kindness …. forgiveness has to figure high in that cocktail otherwise it simply can’t mix. Take good care, go softly and have a beautiful week, Debbie 🙏

      June 4, 2018
  43. I finally got round to visiting. Where is my brain?! I’m looking forward to dipping in. I love that your husband has his own chemical symbol!

    June 4, 2018
    • Hello! How lovely to ‘see’ you …. I have no idea where my own brain is let alone anyone else’s. My husband was extremely bemused when I first dubbed him thus but he appears very comfortable in his chemical symbol these days which amuses me greatly 😉

      June 4, 2018
  44. What a lot of comments, nice to make your acquaintance, i’ll have a delve in the archives I think. France is a fave country for me, I can just about get by but not as well as a Spanish horse (is that whet you said?)
    Crack on, you did well to ditch the telegraph

    June 6, 2018
    • The Telegraph and I were never going to be natural bedfellows …. It’s lovely to meet you too and I will be delving into your blog too. The demise of the Daily and Weekly Challenges set by WordPress has forced me out of my bubble to look for new pastures and that can only be a good thing. Silver linings. Always silver linings if one is open to revealing them. I adore France though I am now in the US for a long stint. I am devoting Fridays to France and Mondays to the Melting Pot (that’s what they call it so I feel I can pinch it) and maybe something random in between if I am so inspired which is a tenuous hope. The most Vache Espagnole of my French speaking is a distant memory now but I still like to pay homage to her from time to time 😉 🐄

      June 7, 2018
      • I was only just discovering the prompts when they took it away from me. So I’m following this fella now, https://fivedotoh.com/ he seems to write an awful lot and have no idea where some of these folk get the time to do so without causing complete marital collapse due to interest and attention deficit!

        June 7, 2018
      • I get quite alarmed by the volume of some people’s output so to speak. I can’t imagine how they do it. I come from the discursive and disorganized school of blogging which means I have good intentions but tend to be a bit erratic about when I actually blog. Which is why the prompts were so good. I will take a look at this chap and see if I can manœuvre his busy road to join something or other. Thank you 🙂

        June 8, 2018
  45. Once in a while, I see your name popping up on my blog. I miss you! Thought I needed to tell you 🙂

    March 15, 2020
    • Thank you! That means an awful lot to me. I was shrouded by a dark cloud for many moons but have cast it officially and am now blinking in a new dawn and feeling the need to be amongst people I value. You are one of those. The next step is to write again …. drivel shall abound!

      March 16, 2020
      • I went through some cloudy times myself, so I know what you are talking about. Just come back, step by step because I know I am not the only one who missed you.

        March 16, 2020
  46. Long time supporter, and thought I’d drop a comment.

    Your organization’s wordpress site is very sleek – hope you don’t
    mind me asking what theme you’re using? (and don’t mind if I steal it?

    :P)

    I just launched my small businesses site –also built
    in wordpress like yours– but the theme slows (!) the site down quite a bit.

    In case you have a minute, you can find it by searching for “royal cbd” on Google (would appreciate
    any feedback) – it’s still in the works.

    Keep up the good work– and hope you all take care of yourself during the coronavirus scare!

    ~Justin

    March 20, 2020
  47. Emm #

    Very happy to see you commenting again. I had kept the link for this in my list, thinking you might turn up again, and then heard from others that you were out and about.

    March 24, 2020
    • How absurdly lovely! Thank you for keeping faith in me! I’m very happy to be back and I’m looking forward to the journey forwards 💫

      March 24, 2020
  48. Your site is lovely and oh so refreshing.

    March 26, 2020
    • What a kind thing to say! I hope to see you around here again and n the meantime, I will check out your work. I do the rounds of newcomers blogs on a Sunday and I look forward to what I am sure will be a treat 😊

      March 26, 2020

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