Margo’s Musings

margo lestz w flowers
Margo with flowers from the Riviera Readers book club

Autumn is definitely in the air where I am. The evenings are getting cooler and the days are growing shorter. The drop in temperature makes me want to cocoon – to curl up beside my (imaginary) fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate and a good book.

And speaking of books…

I was so honored the other evening to be invited, as a guest author, to the Riviera Readers book club in Nice. They chose my Curious Histories of Nice, France as their book of the month and asked me to come and speak to them. Even though I’m not much of a public speaker, everyone was so nice and participated with lots of good questions. It was a lovely evening and they even gave me a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Thanks Riviera Readers!

Books make great gifts

I guess this seems like the appropriate place to put in a little plug for my books… Christmas will be here before you know it, and if someone on your gift list loves France, maybe one of these books would make the perfect present.

Articles of Interest

Here are a few articles that I thought you might find interesting:

This haunted holiday has only recently gained popularity in France. If you would like to see what ghoulish things the French are getting up to in Paris this year, see this great article on Girl Gone Gallic.

Spooky French Vocabulary
Want to talk about Halloween in French? Learn some useful vocabulary at the bottom of this article on French Today.

Cutting the Cheese
Ever wonder about cheese-cutting etiquette in France? Maybe you didn’t even know there was one – but there certainly is. In this article from 24/7 in France, you’ll get all your questions answered.

jack o lantern and cat

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Margo Lestz


  1. Recently read article where they claim that Samain/Halloween is really Breton. Hmm. Trying to explain to French we carved turnips in Ireland before the pumpkin became more readily available has been getting me even more strange faces, and queries as to my sanity again. No wonder i got arthritis at an early age! Great articles again. An early bon weekend from Chez le Ch’tis Margot. Glad the books getting more publicity.

    1. Hi there! You’re right, the Irish did carve jack-o’-lanterns out of turnips. I think carved turnips look more spooky than pumpkins. So Halloween is Breton? I haven’t heard that one – I wonder which vegetable they carved. Thanks for checking in. 🙂

      1. Link to the article and video. I know the French celebrate if that is the word, on 1 November by visiting the cemetaries and cleaning the graves of families and loved ones. My fiancée’s parents are up visiting from the Ch’sud do do just that. Have heard further back in past they would actually take picnics to the gravesides and have conversations as if the deceased were still with them. How much is truth, how much urban legend, and how much is to wind up a seemingly uninformed Irishman i’m not sure!

        1. That’s very interesting! It actually makes sense that since Brittany and Ireland are both Celtic areas that they would share similar customs and beliefs..Thanks for sharing and Happy Halloween. 🙂

  2. Halloween is definitely growing in popularity in south west France, in our village all of the local children are carving pumpkins, choosing their costumes and planning on trick or treating, of course this is all much to the delight of our own children!!!

    1. I’m seeing more Halloween decorations here in shop windows too. It seems that the French are coming around. Who wouldn’t love a holiday that lets you dress up and eat candy? 🙂

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