Favorite holiday destination for leisure: Mahabalipuram for its location, culture and sea food. It is a very relevant first stop in a Tamil Nadu itinerary in order to relax and recuperate after an international flight, while discovering the vestiges of what used to be the main harbour of the ancient Pallava dynasty. A seafood dinner on the beach and you will definitely fall in love with its charm ! I can stay here for a week.
Favorite holiday destination for culture: Madurai with its Sree Meenakshi Temple, the most spectacular one that I have ever seen in India. Sree Meenakshi Temple has been a center of learning and pilgrimage for centuries and for me the symbol of how spirituality and religion is a way of life in India. What I like to do is to sit inside the temple and contemplate….just contemplate and immerse myself in the atmosphere.
Favorite holiday destination for gastronomy: I do not have enough knowledgeable about Indian food as yet. But I love Butter Chicken, Chicken Massala, Chicken curry……..spicy of course and accompanied with rice and a butter nan….. a delight !
Favorite holiday destination for nature: Ladakh for its astonishing landscapes. There is so much to do here. From the Nubra Valley, till Tso Moriri and Tso Kar, passing through many ancient monasteries. Furthermore Ladakh is an excellent place to trek.
Favorite music: Definitely Rock music….from Elvis Presley to Metallica.
Favorite book/s: I like to read books about history. History is so rich and exciting. For me one of the most interesting period of world history is the decline of Roman Empire and the Barbarian invasions.
Favorite drink: Beer and Red Wine.
Favorite dish: “Steak au poivre, patates sautées à la graisse de canard"....you have figured it out.... this is a french dish ! Beef with pepper cream sauce, accompanied with potatoes sauté cooked with duck grease. I am already hungry.
If I were to be reborn I would: A professional rugby player. Rugby is my favourite sport. The idea of earning money by playing my favourite game while travelling all over the world and making new friends just sounds too good.
I often dream of: Living in what the French call "The Thirty Glorious Years" (1945 and 1975). It was after the Second World War and people just wanted to live life to the fullest. France was at its creative best, the economy did well and the youth were untroubled.
Insider tips: When you ask someone something in the streets of India the answer is most likely to be YES all the time. You will rarely hear a NO. This is because people in India are very nice and don't want to offend a foreigner by saying NO. So don't ask - “is the railway station this way?" Instead ask “where is the railway station?”