38. A Tour de France – Brittany

“Where are you, best of the salt sea?” – Middle French poem, 14th century

Hello everyone! Welcome back to The Land of Desire. Thanks for your patience while I spent some quality time with family at Thanksgiving and celebrating my birthday in NYC. This week we’ll continue our miniseries: “A Tour de France”: What kind of France exists outside the boundaries of Paris? What kind of France exists in the middle of the countryside? What does someone in Paris have in common with someone in the Pyrenées? How many kinds of French people are there? What makes someone truly “French” anyway? Today we’ll finish tracing the route of the original Tour de France, traveling through the “in between places” – the vast countryside which traditionally held most of the French population. On y va!

Episode 37: “A Tour de France – Brittany”


The Discovery of France: A Historical Geography – Graham Robb, 2008.


This episode marks the end of our series, “A Tour de France” and the beginning of a new era for the show. When I first set out to make The Land of Desire, I had no idea how big it would grow! I am lucky enough to have thousands of listeners around the world, and I’ve been so glad to hear from all of you that I spent most of this year trying to find more and more ways to connect and share with you all. Unfortunately, I may have found a few *too* many ways to connect. As I prepare for 2018, I need to make a few major changes, some of which are bittersweet. One, I’m updating my Patreon page to reflect the fact that I just can’t offer the rewards I thought I could going forward. I appreciate any contributions from listeners with immense gratitude, but I don’t want to make promises I can’t keep, and I’ll be editing the page accordingly. Two, and this is the big one: since the show’s debut, I’ve always aimed to deliver a new episode every other Thursday. This next year, I simply cannot produce new episodes this frequently. I have a full-time job, and friends and family whom I’d like to spend time with, and The Land of Desire in its current state is an additional full time job of its own! I’ll continue producing new episodes on a more relaxed schedule. I’m not quite sure that that will look like, but I thank you for all of your support this year – every email, Facebook post, contribution, shoutout and fan photo was a joy for me. As always, the best part of producing this show is the opportunity to get to know each of you. With this gratitude and excitement for the future in mind, I wish you all a very Happy New Year and I can’t wait to share more wild, wacky and wonderful stories from French history in 2018!

Have a Happy New Year, everyone!