The Lou Messugo Blog - life in the south of France from a British/Australian TCK's perspective, bringing you French culture, travel on the Côte d'Azur and beyond, expat issues and a little bit of je ne sais quoi all mixed up with a hefty dose of photography.

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Every year in early autumn in the Alps animals that have spent the summer grazing in high pastures are brought down to the valleys for the winter.  This movement of livestock is called transhumance and in many villages it's the perfect opportunity to get together and celebrate; a great excuse for a fête.  A couple of weeks ago, with a less than inspiring weather forecast and only a few hours available, we decided on the spur of the moment to go and experience a transhumance for ourselves in a gorgeous little hill-top village.

Transhumance first sheep

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May is the month of the rose and where better to celebrate this than in the world’s perfume capital, Grasse, on the French Riviera.  Every year, over a weekend in early to mid May, the city honours the rose in all its forms at a 3 day festival, ExpoRose.  This year 8500 bouquets, 13000 rose bushes and over 25000 cut roses decorated fountains, statues, shop fronts and public squares throughout Grasse.  Dance and music performances, tastings of everything rose-flavoured, along with a market selling rose-themed gifts and food, and of course rose plants of every colour and variety imaginable, complete the festival. 

ExpoRose rose festival Grasse French Riviera

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Travel with kids: festivals around the world

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festivals with kids MKB carnivalToday's post is a first for me: I'm hosting the Multicultural Kid Blogs monthly blogging carnival on travel with kids.  Travelling with my kids is something regular readers will know I'm passionate about so I'm delighted to be able to collate an article with contributions from bloggers all around the world on this subject close to my heart.

logoMKBcarnivalThe theme I have chosen for this carnival is visiting/participating in festivals, fairs, fêtes and cultural events across the globe as a way for children to understand more about a particular place or culture.  Travelling far isn't always possible for families for numerous reasons including the two main ones of time and cost, but travel doesn't have to be far to be rewarding - "travel at home" is just as important as overseas or foreign travel.   What is seen as normal or mundane by one person might be seen as exciting or exotic by another so in the case of an international blogging carnival one blogger's visit to a local food fair in Europe is as interesting and relevant as another's visit to a tribal festival in Africa.  

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Nice Carnival is over for another year.  The biggest winter event on the French Riviera, attracting around one million visitors over the two week period, left me divided in opinion this time.  Having always been an outright supporter, keenly participating every year and loving the satirical, irreverant humour of the "big heads" decorated floats, it just didn't quite click this year.  Read on as I muse on why and how this has come about.

flower battle float crowds

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