Travel: Verdun


Now that I’m comfortable with my 50’s appearance, it only took 5 years, I am helping myself remember which packing plans have worked best for me here in Europe. This post covers our trip to see the WWI history in Verdun. The weather forecast was rainy; the itinerary included light hiking in the woods,  staying at a pensione in the country, and going to a community flea market.

Bullet wardrobe for a long weekend in Verdun, Lorraine, France over the July 4 holiday.

  • Jeans: stretchy, straight leg
  • Jeans: skinny
  • Knit shirts: L/S french stripes
  • Shirt: Crisp, white button down
  • Cardigan: White, light weight
  • Rain shell: white, packable
  • Rain coat: mustard yellow tin cloth
  • Down vest or wool pullover (wished for on trip)
  • 3 scarves: linen, vintage silk, microfiber
  • Hiking boots: should have been waterproof, legwarmers were a plus
  • Sneakers: leather, walking
  • Birkenstocks: good for pensione & car
  • Bag: cross body
  • Backpack: waterproof
  • Extra wash cloths!
  • Other usuals: socks, medicine, cosmetics
  • Vintage accessory: daisy print silk scarf with sunny yellow border, charm bracelets

Focusing on wearing white makes selfies seem lighter and somewhat more flattering. Using the old wardrobe rule 2 neutrals+1 accent color keeps it simple. Remember that in these wet, cloudy, and breezy climates, layering allows accommodation for temperature fluctuations. The folks in Verdun were kind and in the country, were just like all country folks-hospitable and pragmatic.

My Best 50 Something

I am loving life.

Much of that comes from the following:

  1. Working on my knowledge pool
  2. Being open to new people, places, and things
  3. Working on my spiritual self
  4. Being open to change and forgiveness
  5. Working on my health and appearance
  6. Avoiding obsessions and silliness
  7. Working on improving my emotional landscape
  8. Being open to letting go of anxiety, fear, anger, rage
  9. Working on being wise
  10. Being open to reality even when unfair, improbable,
  11. Accepting truth, being courageous, living with normal failings and failures

You might think that my good fortune (which doesn’t have anything to do with a fortune), was merely luck. But I think that the foundation, the groundwork, that is built day-by-day, creates the ability to effectively open up to good choices, to be able to say ‘no’ to bad choices, and then to walk through the door of opportunity. And yes, that includes choosing my husband, who has been the most important part of getting to live in Germany for the past two years.

But all of that isn’t enough. Having a solid relationship with God, with his son, Jesus Christ, is the most important aspect of this foundation. With everything else, and without a solid place internally, spiritually, the emptiness will not and cannot be filled. Contentment and happiness, can’t truly bloom.

Like Covey said, big rocks first.

“On Christ the solid rock I stand. All other ground is sinking sand.” William Batchelder Bradbury (1816-1868)