Thursday, January 29, 2009

African Rock Python Facts

Latin name: Python Sebae

Lifespan: In the wild adults can reach up to 30 years of age.

The African Rock Python is the largest of all snake species on the African continent. Large adults, especially females measure between 4 – 5,5 meters. Larger specimens of 7 and 8 meters have been recorded.

Venom: None.

African Rock Pythons are often found near water in savannah and grassland biomes as well as rocky outcrops. Their preferred retreats are under piles of driftwood and inside old termite mounds and abandoned aardvark (ant-bear) burrows.

Mammals such as small to medium sized antelope, dassies (hyrax), rodents, hares, monkeys, monitor lizards, crocodiles and occasionally fish are eaten.

During the summer months the female lays between 20 and 60 eggs in a termite mound or aardvark burrow. Large pythons can lay as many as 100 eggs.
The female remains with her eggs for the 2 – 3 month incubation period. During this period she will not feed but will leave on occasion to drink.

On warm days she will often bask in the sun and then use the absorbed body heat to help incubate the eggs by coiling around them. By constantly twitching her body she also generates heat to help raise the temperature of the eggs. Another advantage of coiling around the eggs is their protection against predators such as mongoose, rats and monitor lizards.

After the eggs hatch, the female remains with the hatchlings for a further 2 weeks and once the have shed their first skin they then leave the security of the female to go off on their own.

The African Rock Python lacks venom glands but is still capable of inflicting a serious bite. Its sharp, recurved teeth often cause severe tissue damage and infection if not disinfected properly.
There are recorded incidents of large African Rock Pythons killing and even eating humans but this is very rare.

Prey that is captured is suffocated to death before consuming. Small prey species are sometimes swallowed alive! Pythons do not crush their prey to death.

The African Rock Python is a highly protected species that plays a very important role in the control of rodent populations.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Restaurant Review: Le Vivier

If two or three foodie friends recommend the same restaurant, I’m usually all over it. Yet despite all the raves I’d heard about Le Vivier, it took me more than a year to get there. My friends and I arrived a bit weary—it was a cold, grey Thursday in Isle-sur-la-Sorgue and many of the shops and galleries we tried to visit were closed--so we were looking forward to a great lunch, a

Friday, January 23, 2009

Expat Party Update

Top Photo: More than 100 expats and friends gathered for the annual New Years Potluck Picnic at the Col de Cérèste, at the eastern tip of the Grand Luberon. At 720 meters, the picnic site offers a 220 degree view of the eastern end of the Parc Naturel du Lubéron with the snow-covered southern Alps and the Parc National du Mercantour in the distance. The annual tradition, begun in 1998 by Glen

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Baby You Can Drive My Car

Based in St. Remy, Pascal Dumaine has started a chauffeur service with an interesting twist: he’ll drive you or your clients or guests anywhere…in your own car. “The advantages,” he says, “are if you want your car with you…or you want to relax on the road. Or if you’re traveling with a group of friends or only need one-way transportation. Or you want to go out for the evening and not worry about

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Skiing on Mont Ventoux...Who Knew?

When I saw my friend Angela Billows the other day, she looked positively radiant, all rosy and glowing. Turns out she had just returned from skiing. “In the Alps?” I asked, but Angela—a costume designer for film and TV who lives in Tarascon--had actually been much closer to home, on Mont Ventoux. I had no idea there was skiing there so I asked her for all the info...and she sent this.

If, like

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Provence: A Photographic Journey

For 26 years, award-winning fine-art photographer Elizabeth Opalenik has taught weeklong summer photo workshops in Provence, bringing a group of students with her from the States. This year, for the first time, she’ll also conduct a four-day workshop designed specifically for locals or travelers already here in Provence. The base will be St. Remy and the dates, June 26th to 29th, 2009.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Seoul Cheap Hotel and Motels Accomodation List

Journey to Seoul will be remarkable, but will cost you a lot with the expensive hotel and apartments. Why don't you plan your accomodations including cheap hotel but still comfortable.

Seoul is one of the highest cost living in Asia, or in the world. The hotel in Seoul is too expensive for ordinary people to stay.

Here are some inexpensive or cheap hotels and motels, that found on the net. I summarize the article into one posting.

1. Best Western Premier Hotel Kukdo
Best Western Premier Hotel Kukdo is located at the center of Seoul Business District.
Address : #310 Uljiro 4-ga Jung Gu (Hotel)

2. Brown Hotel
The Brown Hotel Seoul boasts an unparalleled inner city location in the heart of the downtown area within close proximity of man key attractions and major transport links.
Address : 77-2, Bomun-dong 4 Ga, Seongbuk-gu (Hotel)

3. Best Western Vision Hotel
Vision Hotel is a member of the world's largest hotel chain with more than 4,000 hotels in 80 countries. Vision Hotel newly opens to make your visit a delightful one with superior services, high quality facilities and guests' satisfaction by offering true value at a reasonable price.
Address : 2 Dosun-Dong, Seongdong-Ku (Hotel)

4. Saerim Hotel
Saerim Hotel is located in Insa-dong, Jongno, the center of culture and tourism. We are the most prominent hotel in Insa-dong.
Address : 192-17 Kwanhun-Dong, Jongro-Ku (Hotel)

5. Western CO-OP Residence
Western CO-OP Residence is located in the heart of downtown Seoul. We are situated right next to Dongdaemun, a very popular tourist destination for its phenomenal shopping, food and aesthetics. Subway lines #2, #4, #5 are easily accessible from Dongdaemun Stadium Subway Station.
Address : 77-2, Uljiro-5 Ga, Jung-gu (Hotel)

6. Centro Hotel
Hotel Centro is located at the center of southern Seoul, the business center of Korea. Our staff will offer the best service during your business and travel to Seoul. Our English speaking staff can assist you in any of your activities in Korea.
Address : 1594-3 Seocho-Dong, Seocho-Ku (Hotel)

7. ChungJin Motel
You are invited to stay in Chung Jin Motel with newly constructed and modern facilities in a cozy atmosphere at the most convenient location in the center of Seoul.
Address : 152, ChungJin-Dong, Jongno-Gu (Hotel)

8. Hamilton Hotel
Itaewon has long been named as the city of foreigners. Itaewon is the Mecca of international shopping, and Hamilton Hotel is at the center of this Itaewon. It is the hotel equipped with the optimal location convenient for business, sightseeing, and shopping. Itaewon has a combination with things to eat, see, and enjoy, which makes your travelling special and memorable.
Address : #119-25, Itaewon-dong Yongsan-ku (Hotel)

9. Hotel Elle Inn
The Elle Inn Hotel offers great value-for-money accommodations in an extremely convenient location. Within just ten minutes' walk you have access to two major train stations, many subways stations, the National Museum, the War Memorial Hall and Yongsan and shopping areas like Namdaemum and Dongdaemun markets.
Address : 98-14, Galwol-dong Yongsan-gu (Hotel)

10.Hotel Victoria Seoul
Victoria Hotel is located near the city center and is well-connected to the main streets. This helps the guests to commute easily. The hotel is situated at Mia 4-dong, Gangbuk-gu, Seoul. The most important reasons for choosing the hotel as a comfortable nest to take rest. And Hyundai and Lotte department store is nearby the hotel.
Address : 42-8 Mia 4-dong Gangbuk-gu (Hotel)

Cheap Hotel Seoul
Cheap Hotel Seoul

The Queen Hotel is a very well appointed Cheap Hotel in Inchon Korea very close to Seoul Pudong Airport.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Stone Alone

Karen and David Webster moved to Eygalières from the UK five years ago. In the course of doing home renovations they found a great source for custom hand-crafted stonework in Les Baux--the Carriere Sarragan—and they ordered a fireplace. Karen says they were delighted with the craftsmanship, service and price so I asked her to share the info.

The foundation of Provence is laid on a bedrock of

Boomslang Facts

Latin Name: Dispholidus typus

Length: 1 – 1,5 m.

Lifespan: Average 8 years in the wild.

Throughout Africa except in the arid regions, preferring grassland, savannah and woodland often found in shrubs and trees.

Chameleons, lizards, birds, birds’ eggs, frogs and small mammals.

10 – 25 eggs are laid in the late spring to midsummer with an incubation of 2 – 3 months.

The boomslang has extremely powerful haemotoxic venom.
This venom affects the blood clotting mechanism, resulting in headaches, and loss of blood through the bodily openings and if left untreated internal bleeding of the organs will occur.

Unlike most snakes, the boomslang has a full colour vision aiding it in the detection of still standing prey. The boomslangs' eyesight is so keen that it is even capable of detecting motionless chameleons!

The Boomslang is a very placid snake, but if provoked it may bite.
It is predominantly arboreal but will also hunt on open ground and has also been known to cross water in pursuit of prey.
A Boomslang can open its mouth as wide as 170 degrees, and even with its fangs at the back of the mouth it is still capable of biting an arm or leg.
The name "Boomlang" derives from the Africans language, meaning Tree snake.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Irish Eyes

Kieran Coffey lives in Cork, Ireland, where he combines a day job in information technology with "as much photography as possible.” In his personal work he loves to shoot landscapes and to work with community groups, documenting their projects such as a recent dance class for autistic children. He’s passionate about Provence and travels here as often as possible. I came across some