Louvre, January 2017

Photos : Yannick Chauveau

Advertisements

Milano/Valle d’Aosta/Lago di Como, July 2016

Last July, I went to visit a friend in Milan. So happy to have international friends who make me discover the world !

The trip didn’t start very well though, I took the wrong bus (which left from the right place in front of the airport, so, not my mistake 🙂 ) At some point, it started arriving in the countryside, and I guess that lady next to me realized that I was a tourist and so that I was probably not going to stay at a farm, so she asked me where I was going and, indeed, I was on the wrong way. So she explained me how to get to the right place (San Babila) ; she was fantastic and is probably one of the most helpful persons on Earth. In France, people do not really care about others (especially tourists), they won’t usually help spontaneously, and sometimes won’t even help if you ask them haha. It’s a well-known problem about tourism in that country ! Anyway, the place I had to make the bus change at was lost in the middle of nowhere, with no information anywhere and no clue about whether a bus was going to come some time or not (for those who know Italy, you know what I mean) But luckily, I met that guy (who didn’t speak English, like many people in Italy ; sometimes it’s essential to speak a bit of the local language when traveling !) who helped me and, eventually, I arrived at San Babila and met my friend, who had been waiting there for like two hours.

The first thing we did is a bit cliché : we went to eat pizza. The pizzeria was in Navigli, a charming and relaxing neighbourhood (well, there are not many stressful places in Italy anyway haha) The pizzas were good and cheap !

During my stay in Milan, I saw the highlights : the beautiful Duomo and Galleria Vittorio Emanuele (which is difficult to photograph because it is always crowded, of course), the Sforza castle,… I also visited the very modern neighbourhood around the Piazza Gae Aulenti. It’s a bit like La Défense in Paris. I’m not a big fan of modern architecture in such historical cities, but it’s always interesting to see ! Plus there is a square called after a Finnish architect, Alvar Aalto. Another neighbourhood I visited is Brera where there is, inter alia, a nice garden called Orto botanico di Brera (it’s the garden of the Academy of Fine arts)

After spending a few days in Milan, which is not a huge city, we decided to go to Lago di Como. We had planned to rent a boat – there are not many things that I like more than being on a boat – but unfortunately there wasn’t any available boat, at that time of the year we should have had booked in advance. We took a cruise to Bellagio instead ; it is a cute village situated on the lake shore. We had a stroll, and, very important, I ate tiramisu (how could I have resolved to leave Italy otherwise ?)

From Lago di Como, we then went to Valle d’Aosta, where my friend’s family (and dog ❤ ) live. I was warmly welcomed (that’s how Italians are, always) and the place, surrounded by mountains, was lovely. It was perfect to enjoy calm and nature (quite different from Parisian streets ! )

It was a nice trip, I’m always happy to discover Italy (and most countries in general, indeed) as it is a bit my country ! And I confirm that Italian food is one of the best things in the world (even if Mexican and Indian food might be able to rival)

>> Sharon non ti ringraziero mai abbastanza per tutto questo, sono cosi contenta di conoscerti e spero che condivideremo altri viaggi insieme ! Forse appuntamento a Hong-Kong a luglio

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

En juillet dernier, je suis partie rendre visite à une amie à Milan. Ravie d’avoir des amis internationaux qui me font découvrir plein d’endroits !

Le voyage n’a toutefois pas très bien commencé, j’ai pris le mauvais bus (qui est parti du bon endroit devant l’aéroport, donc, pas ma faute 🙂 ) Au bout d’un moment, il commençait à s’enfoncer de plus en plus en zone rurale, et une dame assise à côté a remarqué que j’étais une touriste et que je n’avais probablement pas réservé un hébergement à la ferme, donc elle m’a demandé où je me rendais, et j’étais effectivement dans la mauvaise direction. Elle m’a donc expliqué comment me rendre au lieu de rdv (San Babila) ; elle a été géniale et est probablement l’une des personnes les plus helpful du monde. En France, les gens ne prêtent pas vraiment attention aux autres (en particulier aux touristes), ils ne vont généralement pas proposer leur aide spontanément, et parfois ne le font pas même lorsqu’on demande haha. C’est un problème bien connu en ce qui concerne le tourisme dans ce pays ! Bref, l’endroit où je devais effectuer le changement de bus était perdu au milieu de nulle part, sans aucune information affichée, pas moyen de savoir si un bus allait finir par arriver ou non (ceux qui connaissent l’Italie voient de quoi je parle) Par chance, j’ai croisé quelqu’un (qui ne parlait pas anglais, comme beaucoup de gens en Italie ; cela peut s’avérer essentiel de parler un minimum la langue locale lorsqu’on voyage !) qui m’a lui aussi apporté son aide, et, finalement, j’ai pu retrouver mon amie qui m’attendait depuis plus de deux heures à San Babila.

La première chose que nous avons faite est un peu cliché : nous avons été manger des pizzas. La pizzeria était située à Navigli, un quartier très joli et reposant (certes, il n’y a pas beaucoup d’endroits non-reposants en Italie haha) Les pizzas étaient très bonnes et à des prix très abordables !

Lors de mon séjour à Milan, j’ai vu les lieux phares tels que les superbes Duomo et Galerie Victor Emmanuel (qui est compliquée à photographier car toujours bondée, bien sûr), le château des Sforza,… J’ai également visité le quartier très moderne autour de la Piazza Gae Aulenti, qui est un peu l’équivalent de La Défense à Paris. Je ne suis pas particulièrement fan de l’architecture moderne dans ce genre de villes historiques, mais c’est toujours intéressant à voir ! Et il y a une place nommée d’après un architecte Finlandais, Alvar Aalto. Un autre quartier que j’ai visité est celui de Brera, où j’ai découvert, entre autres, un joli jardin appelé Orto botanico di Brera (il s’agit du jardin intérieur de l’Académie des Beaux-Arts)

Après avoir passé quelques jours à Milan, qui n’est pas une très grande ville, nous avons décidé d’aller au Lac de Côme. Nous avions prévu de louer un bateau – il y a peu de choses que j’aime davantage que faire du bateau – mais malheureusement il n’y en avait pas de disponible, à cette période de l’année nous aurions dû réserver en avance. Nous avons opté pour une mini-croisière jusqu’à Bellagio, un charmant village situé au bord du lac. Nous nous sommes baladés et, chose très importante, j’ai pu profiter d’un tiramisu (comment aurais-je pu me résoudre à quitter l’Italie sans ça ? )

De là, nous nous sommes rendus à la Vallée d’Aoste, où vit la famille (et le chien ❤ ) de mon amie. J’y ai été accueillie très chaleureusement (les Italiens ont le sens de l’accueil, toujours) Situé au cœur des montagnes, l’endroit était très beau ; un lieu parfait pour profiter du calme et de la nature (ça change quelque peu des rues parisiennes ! )

Ce fut un voyage intéressant, c’est toujours plaisant de découvrir l’Italie (et la plupart des pays de manière générale, certes) comme c’est un peu mon pays ! Et je confirme que la nourriture italienne est l’une des meilleures choses au monde (bien que la mexicaine et l’indienne pourraient rivaliser)

 

Non, la viande ne me manque pas !

Les Green Dodus

Je suis devenue végétarienne en janvier 2015, puis végane en mars 2016. Cela fait maintenant deux ans que je n’ai pas consommé ni viande, ni poisson, ni « fruits » de mer, et bientôt un an que j’ai arrêté les produits d’origine animale (laitages, œufs, miel…). Si la viande me manque ? Non, pas du tout. La vie d’un être vivant et sentient vaudrait-elle plus qu’un simple plaisir gustatif ?

Oui, j’aimais la viande

Parmi les premières réponses qu’on entend quand on dit qu’on est végétalien, il y a la classique « ah, moi je ne pourrais pas arrêter la viande, j’aime trop ça ! ». Je comprends qu’il puisse être difficile de se passer de quelque chose qui nous procure du plaisir. Mais ça sous-entendrait que je n’aimais pas tant que ça la viande avant d’arrêter d’en consommer.

Dans les faits, je ne raffolais effectivement pas des barbecue ou de la viande bon marché. Je…

View original post 1,085 more words

Recette fondant vegan

Après avoir partagé la photo de ce gâteau sur Facebook, quelques personnes m’ont demandé la recette donc tant qu’à faire je la publie. Recette testée et approuvée donc !

I’m posting this recipe in French only, because even if I’m studying translation I’m not sure about how to translate a recipe ! like, the units of measurements are not the same etc. Of course I could do it, but here are two equivalents I found in English, easier 🙂 However, I haven’t tried them
Recipe 1
Recipe 2

Ingrédients :

  • 100g de chocolat noir
  • 100g de beurre végétal
  • 20cl de crème d’avoine ou de crème de soja
  • 500g de crème de marrons
  • 2 sachets de sucre vanillé
  • 1 sachet de levure chimique
  • 100g de farine
  • éventuellement : des vermicelles au chocolat pour décorer

______________________________

Dans une casserole, faire fondre à feu doux le chocolat avec le beurre et la crème (d’avoine ou de soja). Mélanger jusqu’à ce que le tout soit bien fondu et lisse.

Dans un saladier, mélanger la crème de marrons avec le sucre vanillé et la levure chimique. Ensuite, ajouter la préparation fondue (chocolat + beurre + crème) et mélanger.

Enfin, ajouter la farine au fur et à mesure en mélangeant, jusqu’à obtenir une pâte homogène.

Préchauffer le four à 180°C.

Verser la pâte dans un moule en silicone.
(pour les autres types de moules, beurrer puis recouvrir d’une feuille de papier sulfurisé avant de verser la pâte)

Faire cuire 30min à 180°C.

A la sortie du four, laisser refroidir le gâteau, avant de le placer au réfrigérateur pendant quelques heures (2 heures devraient suffire, mais je l’ai laissé toute la nuit).

A la sortie du réfrigérateur, ajouter les vermicelles ou le glaçage sur le gâteau.

 

Petit close-up des jolies cuillères cupcakes 

 

Editorial : Veganism

(Source : treehugger.com/green-food/why-love-one-eat-other-ads-stir-controversy-toronto-subway-system.html)

In English class last year, we were asked to write an editorial. We weren’t given any rules or specific topics, I guess the point was just to see how we express our opinions. I chose to write about veganism, which is an important topic to me so I thought I’d share it.

The article doesn’t include exact data (detailed percentages etc) – it’s just something I wrote quickly- and I don’t necessarily intend to write about veganism on this blog (I have kind of given up the idea of making people think about all this…), even if there are and will be a few things about it ! 🙂

Oh et je ne l’ai pas mis en français, car ce n’est pas un sujet qui passionne grand-monde et j’aurais la flemme de traduire pour rien… mais bon en cas de demandes, je le ferai 😉

THE OPINION PAGES  |  Editorial

THE OBVIOUS – AND LESS OBVIOUS – REASONS WHY HUMANS SHOULD LEAVE ANIMALS OUT OF THEIR PLATES

By the Editorial Board – 22 March 2016

People tend to see their food as mere food, as inanimate elements whose only purpose is to please them. Has this piece of chicken really always been a lifeless thing ? And what about that slice of meat in the hamburger ? And the fish in the sushis ? A more relevant way of looking at things would be to consider where they come from. The chicken, as well as the cow, the salmon, the goat, or any other sentient being*, just wants to live and enjoy his or her life.

Indeed, all living beings have the right to live, and by saying all, it means not only humans. This species like to think that it is the most important on Earth, that its rights are unlimited and that it is above all the others. Humans are so selfish they think everything belongs to them and that they can just do whatever they want. This way of thinking is clearly nonsense. Without nature and animals, humans wouldn’t survive. Each plant, each insect and each animal has a role on Earth, a precise role that enables a good harmony all around the planet. However, what is the role of humans ? A role of polluting ? Of destroying ? Of killing ? Animals and nature, as for them, would live perfectly – if not better – in the absence of human beings.

Some people are not aware (demonstration here) that they are eating a being that once had a soul, a family and surely a natural appetite for life. Others just don’t care. The latter’s level of compassion is not important enough to admit that animals are not there to be exploited and eaten. How can someone be so cruel ? Actually, most people couldn’t kill an animal themselves, because « it’s horrible to see an animal suffering ». Yes, it is and it does not diminish the suffering if someone else does it. Buying meat or fish is supporting the idea that animals are inferior, that they do not have rights, and that someone’s own pleasure is more important than someone else’s life.

What most people ignore is that humans have no need to eat animals. Human bodies are not meant to be cemeteries. Lions’ bodies, with their very short bowel, are constituted so as to eat flesh ; they are definitely carnivorous. Humans are not. (Have a look at comparative anatomy for more details) Therefore, what’s the point in eating an animal that has eaten plants (and food supplements) to get proteins, when it’s possible to eat the plants (and the food supplements, if needed) directly ? No intermediary is necessary.

Now let’s get to the products that come from animals. What can possibly be the problem with eggs and milk ? These past few years, awareness has risen and more and more people are becoming vegan ; there are strong reasons for that. Veganism is a way of life that rejects all products that come from the exploitation of animals, in every way. So it also means refusing to wear leather and fur for example.

In the egg industry, male chickens are not needed. Indeed, they do not produce eggs. So what’s done with them ? Will they be kept and fed for free and live happily ever after ? It is not really like that. Male chickens are killed soon after their birth. Sometimes they are crushed, sometimes smothered by being put alive in plastic bags and thrown away. Concerning female chickens, they are so privileged they will have the right to live in tiny and dirty cages where they can’t even spread their wings, and they will spend their whole lives laying, their eggs always stolen from them. When they will start producing fewer eggs, they will be killed and eaten as they will not be profitable anymore.

Now what about milk ? In order to produce milk, a cow needs to give birth. So as to have pregnant cows, the animals are raped : the common expression used for that is “artificial insemination”. Then, when the cow gives birth, as it has been decided that the milk will be for humans, her baby is stolen from her and most of the time killed for its meat. In addition to these horrible practices, let’s take into account the fact that humans drinking milk from cows makes as much sense as humans drinking milk from dogs or giraffes. (PETA made this funny video about it) Why on Earth would humans need proteins that have the property of making a baby cow grow ? Cows’ milk is for calves.

The most pertinent and clever thing for everyone to do would be to become vegan, for all the reasons concerning ethic, morals, health, and environment.

“sentient being”, and not just “living being” because there’s an obvious difference between plants and animals. Not that it’s cool to kill plants – personally, I wouldn’t pick a flower for “fun” for example – but the absence of a nervous system changes it all. Why am I saying all this ? Because there are many (yes, many) people who are not ashamed of saying “What about plants ? You murder plants !” ( = «I’m feeling quite uncomfortable right now so I’m saying whatever crosses my mind even if it’s not valid»), thinking it’s an awesome and revolutionary argument 😉

img_4983