Here’s a countdown of my ten most-often-viewed blog posts in the year 2022, with links. (Five of these were also on my top-ten list for 2021.)
# 10 — Jacques Brel’s Marieke in Brugge/Bruges. It took me a long time to realize why the gorgeous young ladies in French love songs are always twenty years old, rather than nineteen or twenty-one. The explanation is in this post about Jacques Brel’s Marieke, one of his few bilingual songs. (This post was # 5 in 2020 and 2021.)
# 9 — Wildplassen. This is not the post I would have chosen to represent the lovely Flemish city of Ghent (aka Gent, Gand or Gante), but the search engines keep pushing it, no doubt because of its urological interest.
# 8 — Opern-Gespräche. After five consecutive years at number 1, my only German-language blog post has now slipped down to number 8. It is about an opera-appreciation course that I taught at the Adult Education Center here in Frankfurt for over twenty years, until the first coronavirus lockdown abruptly axed it during our 41st semester.
# 7 — Pedestrian crosswalks in Paris. It’s a wonder more Germans aren’t run over in Paris, since the zebra-striped pedestrian crossings don’t mean quite the same in France as they do in Germany. (Perhaps my modest blog post has saved a few lives over the years??)
# 6 — Tapestries in the Louvre. In 2013, I had the privilege of spending a day in the Louvre Museum in Paris with the Belgian art connoisseur Eddy Dijssel, whom I had met through the now-defunct website VirtualTourist. I have written four blog posts about that day, and I’m glad to see that one of them has now entered the most-viewed list at number six.
# 5 — Bilingual street signs in Toulouse. For several centuries, no matter who was in charge (a king, revolutionaries, republicans, an emperor or whoever), the French central government tried with considerable success to impose a standard language on the entire country. In the city of Toulouse, in southern France, the traditional Occitan language is rarely used any more, but in 2001 the city started posting bi-lingual street signs, usually by adding a sign in Occitan below the existing sign in French.
# 4 — Stone of Bordeaux. Unlike Toulouse, which has no stone quarries within reasonable hauling distance, Bordeaux is surrounded by quarries — some 1,400 of them — so the two cities look completely different. (Was # 7 in 2021.)
# 3 — Dionysian frenzy. Ancient Greek vases are the best places to see people (and gods, maenads, satyrs, etcetera) working themselves up into a Dionysian frenzy. (Was also # 3 in 2021.)
# 2 — Seating in the galleries at La Scala. Milan’s Teatro alla Scala is my nomination for the world’s most infuriating opera house, because if you’re not careful you can pay through the nose and still have little or no view of the stage. My solution for this is to get a seat in the last row of the newly-added (21st century) galleries, where you can stand up and see most of the stage because there is nobody behind you.
# 1 — Seating in the Arena. The ancient Roman Arena in Verona can seat up to 15,000 people if they sit close enough together. Making sure they do sit close enough together is the thankless task of the poorly-paid young ushers, who still gladly do the job all summer so they can see and hear some of the world’s most popular operas night after night. (Was # 2 in 2021.)
See also: My top ten blog posts in 2021 and in 2017.
15 thoughts on “My top ten blog posts in 2022”
Nice compilation, Don. Congratulations.
Thanks. By coincidence, there are two posts on Belgium together at # 10 and 9, two on Paris at 7 and 6, two on southern France at 5 and 4, and two on Italy at 2 and 1.
A nice recap, happy new year!
Thanks, and best wishes to you, too.
Happy New Year, Don! 🥂🍾
Thanks, Luisella. And best wishes to you as well.
An interesting exercise – I should do the same one day!
Yes, give it a try. I was quite surprised by some of the results, like # 7 and 9.
Nemorino, I have enjoyed your blog for many years now. I like the variety of your topics and interests and the fresh perspective you bring to all things German and French, two of my great passions. # 6 — Tapestries in the Louvre, was my favorite blog that you posted this past year! Looking forward to your reflections in 2023. Robyn
Thanks, Robyn, glad you liked the posts. But actually I posted all ten of them in earlier years; 2022 was just a year when they got the most views. # 6, for instance, is from 2021, using my photos from 2013.
A great selection – I’ve no doubt that zebra crossing post saved lives!
We all saw these countries. Great images. Anita
Such a nice recap!
Thank you for sharing 🙏🙏🙏
Roundup posts like this are so fun. I look forward to writing mine every year-and would do it more often if i could. Buon anno! Cristina