Dear Readers, Happy Human Rights Day and Happy Hanouka!!!

There’s so much happening right now in my life…

HANOUKA2 008The Beuty of Asiacook 090, getting used to my new surroundings, helping Fernand preparing the conference which will take place next week click here to download the PROGRAMME)…and Laos

And remember…. Of all places, it’s at the Habad Chiang Mai center that I lit the second candle last night…People I’d never mix with back home (too orthodox, to proselyte, too pro-illegal settlements, too antifeminists too…much!) but whom I was happy to join last night. Gili (I finally found out the real name of my favourite hang out café here), took me on his scooter with his son and here I was, in extremely cosmopolitan Chiang Mai,  lighting the menora photo   singing Maotsur and Hanerot Allanou Madlikim….and eating Suvganiot (well, not eating, really I don’t like the stuff…boules de berlin are not my thing) with Gili and Ory! In the end…we are all Jews and it does mean something…since 5 thousand years +;-)

Prior to this, I spent two glorious days in Luang Prabang, visiting magnificent temples

but also l making a marvelous encounter of a great journalist, Somsanouk Mixay AKA Michel or Papa in Luang Prabang.We were just looking for a place to have a nice drink and found this marvelous wine bar.

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Michel was sitting with half the stars of the Luang Prabang Film Festival (he’s on the right, with a painter and a movie actress. the painter is Canadian Laotian, from Alberta…I’ll give more details after my hectic meeting!)cook 139My friend Momo had told me I should try their roasted seeweeds and asked me to make sure to have a scotch “A sa santé et celle d’Isabelita” on the Mekong River Banks, and this is exactly what we did!

The minute we arrived in our charming hotel, the Mekong Riverview Hotelcook 113, gracefully met and guided to a room with a view indeed, we booked a river cruise and had a unique dinner. Luang Prabang is still very …authentic. No real landing bridge, I luckily wasn’t wearing any high heals and had to deal with a very slippery and muddy landing path…then a small boat en lieu the footbridge to the boat. But once aboard, we had a lovely dinner with music and dance entertainment and met one of the movie directors present for the Movie festival and then met the whole festival in that wine bar. The Movie Festival takes place near the night market, on a square and the whole city was there, watching, laughing and enjoying the movie…a wonderful human experience!

Back to Chiang Mai, I took a very cosmopolitan cooking class with two Canadians from Yukon (must be 12% of its total population, lol), two Belgians, two Dutch, an Australian…and a Cosmopolitan you know…we were driven to the train station, then took a bicycle to ride to the cooking farm. A lot of fun and excellent food…even tastier because we made it. Ingredients are so tasty and fresh…cooking is an art and a true pleasure. I’ll post more about that lesson…but have to tell you more. I’m in the middle of a preparation of a meeting on Language Rights, Inclusion and the prevention of Ethnic Conflicts…it’s an experience in itself, after having decided to stop congress organisation, to be back into my old minefield…but to be honest, I still enjoy it as much as in the good old days…So, enjoy the beauty of my favourite herbs and stay tuned for more… Here’s a PROGRAMME (click on the link). I don’t know how much I’ll be actually able to attend but there’s a session I won’t own, so check it out and if by any chance you have some comments or suggestions it’s right on time! Cheers!

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