machine à coudre

le repos

Dog Days down South. Photo taken in Presa while the car-chaser was off-duty...

le repos (reuh poh) noun, masculine

: rest


Siesta in Sicily

Bonjour from the lava looming foothills of Etna. This « thrice-weekly » journal is on sabbatical for the next two weeks while its ink-pushing editor lets vacation get the best of her.

As I type this dispatch, leaves rustle on eucalyptus trees, a scooter screams outside on the street, its riders chatting away in Sicilian speak. Earlier, I listened to church bells and rooster "yells" and, last night, the gargle of goat herders followed by clanking bells and wagging tails as a troupeau made its way up the steep piedmont, toward a sleepy volcano in the distance.

Distance… it is a holiday maker’s method--just enough of it to result in a rupture with rat-a-tat rhythm, space sufficient to separate from one’s usual speed in time to dip in to a reposante Sicilian retreat.


Note bene:  This journal resumes on August 18th. Enjoy the break.

Comments are welcome in the comments box following this post at


Lovely Man.

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Yes I agree - something about his stance says kind and caring without even seeing his face. I wonder what is in his sac - maybe les fruits - I think he would care for himself - he's toned and slender.
Dianne xx


Where in the Etna foothills? By coincidence, I spent six weeks in Sicily late April to early June, five days of which I spent with my amica di penna in Nicolosi, an Etna foothill village a little north of Catania.If you are in Catania, do try the traditional street drink made from freshly squeezed lemons, acqua frizzante, and a little salt. You buy it at street kiosks. It's very refreshing.

Divertitevi bene!

Herm Meyer in Phoenix, AZ

The "Lovely Man" photo prompted this poem:

The man hobbles with trusty cane
Obviously in deep-felt-pain
Substance in left hand, support in his right
He struggles forward, with goal in sight

His frame shows the hardships felt
From the book-of-life he’s been dealt
Yet he walks with his head held high
An occasional eye raised to the sky

With heavenly strength raining down
He’s sure to make it across town
To an anxious family that’s awaiting
And birthday they’ll be celebrating!

Michael Morrison

Your photos for this story are absolutely terrific and engaging--both of them. The photo of the old man is a classic.

However, you might check your pronunciation of "repos." I believe that it is "roh-poh."
That's counter to what you might think since "e" in the alphabet is pronounced "euh."

To confirm, check the pronunciation of a similar word, such as "requin" (French for shark). It is pronounced "roh-kan."


Kristin, your pronunciation of repos is correct. It has the same e sound as le and premier, and requin for that matter.

Cheryl in STL

Relax and enjoy!

Herm Meyer in Phoenix, AZ

Salut Kristin.

Your photo “Dog Days down South” is a gem for its perspective. The cobblestones up close, the street that appears to be narrowing and the small buildings in the distance cause the mind’s eye to feel that “infinity” is just over the hill in the background. Super job!

À bientôt


Bet you were on the receiving end of a... BIG LICK!!

Enjoy your holidays!


When a new missionary arrived in France or Belgium during my mission days, we would remind them to be sure to pronounce this scripture correctly quoting Jesus: "Venez a moi, vous tous qui etes fatigues et charges, et je vous donnerai du repos" au lieu de "deux repas".


Just a minor clarification: I'm sure all your avid readers would agree with me that we will only be "enjoying the break" because we will be waiting for more of your wonderful posts, and -- as they say -- absence makes the heart grow fonder. I've been missing your words and photos, Kristin!


On reading about leaves rustling on eucalyptus trees I was reminded of the word "souffle" to describe the soft noise made by leaves in a gently breeze.
Enjoy votre repos.


No laptop for two weeks.
Arrived yesterday in Biarritz for some "repos" and using an internet connection at my disposal for a few minutes (but this connection will be the one & only exception).

-> same "e" as in French "de" - "ne" - "me" - "le" - "se" - "ce" - "te"...... and as in "de"main, "de"mander...etc

-> [ʀ(ə)po] - No problem. Sorry Michael!
I believe that "euh" (given here) gives the same sound as the "ə" of the International Phonetic Alphabet. If so, everything is fine.

Kristin, I can just see you, on-your-knees, waiting for the right moment to "click" and receive "a... BIG LICK" as Gretel so rightly put it!

Oh! such a dear old man, quite simply and slowly walking home after his shopping, "à l'aide de sa fidèle canne". I can just imagine my father ..., years ago.

"Repose-toi bien"! (Have a good rest!)

Michael Morrison

Thanks Carol and Newforest for the additional input on the pronunciation of "repos."

My input was based on the computer-spoken pronunciation from PC software called Word Ace by Transparent Language. Up until now, I accepted their pronunciations as accurate.

But, I checked my dictionary (Harper, Collins, Robert French Dictionary) and found repos and requin to both have an (ə) pronunciation.—the same pronunciation as "de," "ne," "me," "le," "se," "ce," "te,""de"main, and "de"mander.

Like most, I tend to trust my dictionary, but it would be interesting to get a pronunciation from Jean-Marc.

Julie Dufaj

Gotta go somewhere I can hear "the gargle of goat herders followed by clanking bells". You never fail to excite wanderlust!

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