July 22, 2009

For our European friends

Here's another surprise from US Airways --->

Frankfurt (FRA) - Jacksonville (JAX):
384 Euro R/T in November.

These special fares usually last for only a couple of days.
Last month there were similar fares from Brussels. Then they went back up to 500 €. Then down again to 400 €. You have to follow it up closely.

Go to usairways.com and click on the flag of your country, at the bottom of the page.

July 21, 2009

Tournament registration open

The website and registration are now open at:


The first team, John & Fernando from San Antonio, TX signed up minutes ago.

We're ready to roll!

July 14, 2009

48 hrs in New York

Sat July 11 - afternoon - Prospect Park
Straight from the airport to the brand new boulodrome of NYPC where the last preparations were made to try it out for the first time.
A beautiful spot, with enough room for 22 tournament size court, lots of shade, benches and tables.
The first game ended in a Fanny, but I've been sworn to secrecy as to who was in the "0" team. Not me... ;-)

Sun July 12 - all day
- Brooklyn
The 8th edition of the annual Bastille Day tournament.
Gorgeous weather, and - I think - more people than ever before.

Mon July 13 - morning - Bryant Park
Another bright & sunny day, with a constant "va et vient" of players, under the watchful eye of Pierre of La Boule NY. Always great to meet new players that I only knew by phone so far.

More about the weekend later, but first I need to catch up on some (real) work..

July 9, 2009

NY in Marseille

I was way too busy these days to report on this years' Marseillaise, but just heard that our very own New York player Xavier Thibaud made it all the way to 8th finals Wednesday. That means among the last 16 teams out of the almost 4600 at the start. Bravo!

He teamed up with Belgian buddies (and ex-World champions) Tichon Hémon and Dédé Lozano. Apparently it was a nerve wrecking game, against the 2007 French national team. They went from 11/7 to 11/11 but then saw the chance for a quarter final vanish at 13/11.

Other New Yorkers (we know of) who participated were Alec (reached 64th finals) and Ernesto & Yngve.

We look forward to see them all in action at the Open in Amelia Island.

You can follow today's finals live on France 3 (from 6:30am to 1:00pm EST).

Below is an interview of Xavier (in French) by the newspaper that organizes the annual event, called - of course - La Marseillaise:

July 7, 2009

4th of July

18 years ago, when our very first shipment of boules arrived in Miami, I set up a 4th of July demonstration in Key Biscayne (another island on the Atlantic side of Florida).
A repeat was more than overdue!
So last Saturday we were part of the Stars & Stripes Freedom Festival in beautiful Central Park in Fernandina Beach. With live music and a bunch of attractions.
At one stage we had a 3-generation men's team challenging 3 teens, to no avail. The kids had already played bocce at their church and creamed them. Sorry guys, better luck next time!

Bastille Day in Boston

Miel - at the Intercontinental - is hosting an outdoor waterfront pétanque party this Saturday July 11, In co-operation with the Mistral Pétanque Club.

More info

Getting ready for the wedding

All pétanque players in Brooklyn know this charming couple, Sadie and Francis.
Well, here's some big news, from Lise - Francis' mom (and also Ambassadrice de Pétanque Extraordinaire) in Esperance, NY:

"Thanks to Dan and George we have a fantastic second court for Francis and Sadie's wedding.
Looking forward to love & petanque celebration on August 1st. See you in Brooklyn for Bastille."

You see, when the Holland family talks about "courtship" they actually mean pétanque courts ;-)

I'm looking forward to congratulate them both on Sunday in Brooklyn.

Les Boules du Dimanche

Food & Wine magazine features famous chef ànd boules player Jacques Pépin in their July issue.
Every summer, 8 Sundays in a row, 50 avid players (and eaters) get together for "boules" and good food.
F&W - Jacques Pépin's Perfect Summer Party

And here's another great article about Jacques and his friends playing (ànd eating) at the Bee & Thistle in Lyme, CT.

LymeLine.com - Pétanque Anyone?

July 6, 2009

Back in Florida

That's it. Early June we moved office and inventory to our new warehouse in Fernandina Beach, on Amelia Island.

I got a lot of help from Josh (Carolina Petanque), who has a natural knack for smart packing and stowing, ànd a lot more muscle than me. A blessing.

As with any move, you lose things, and you rediscover things you didn't remember you had. That all took some time to sort out.

We now have everything we need for a smooth operation: a huge amount of shelf space, easy truck access, proximity to JAX airport (we use more and more airfreight for faster service) , the Port of Jacksonville, UPS and the post office. Last but not least, only a mile from the beach ;-)

Our move got picked up by Amelia's news website. It's great to feel so welcome in a new place.

Unfortunately, during all this activity, blogging stayed on the back burner...