Step Back In Time In Carcassonne

Step Into a Time Machine and Experience Life in a Medieval City

Set in the countryside of the south of France this small city is a major tourist attraction. Walking into Carcassonne is like walking through a time portal to Medieval times. This 13th century city existed long before the modern age and you can feel that every second you're there.

UNESCO

Carcassonne is really one very large castle that is acting as a city. Everything just as it was in the Medieval era is contained within the castle walls. The countryside lays low outside the citadel so you can see it from far away. The massive structure welcomes you with multiple defensive walls, a moat, heavy portcullis, and a drawbridge.

Inside those high walls is a world of weaving alleyways, towering turrets, and tiny shops selling their wares. The streets of Carcassonne seem like they have not changed in centuries except for some modern marvels of convenience. The setting is so authentic it almost doesn't feel real, like you've stumbled through time or ended up in Medieval Disneyland.

While it seems like an ancient small town masquerading as a fairytale village, it has the problem of becoming a tourist destination as much as an honest retelling. As Carcassonne booms as a tourist favorite, it loses some authenticity while trying to please so many visitors. As a result, there are a lot of gift shops and overpriced restaurants. However, there are still plenty of stores to explore that are selling authentic souvenirs, and you'll have no problem finding a great place to eat.

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If you are a history buff looking to experience the real deal, then you've found it. It's heavily restored but it still stands with thousands of years of history in its roots. If you want to experience the lush French countryside, it rarely gets more beautiful than Carcassonne with its architecture and stunning views.

My recommendations are inspired by my trip there in 2011. You should take the time to walk around and experience the citadel and royal keep. You can walk atop the city walls and experience breathtaking views of the surrounding areas, or wander the winding streets brimming with life. While you're there, eat some of the local specialties that are part of the history of the people of this region, and get yourself a souvenir if your heart desires.

photo by jenny h.

Carcassonne is a wonderful stopover destination, great for a day or two. It's unique and fascinating so it shouldn't be missed if you have an opportunity, and is small and it doesn't take too long to explore. The size could be a benefit or a problem depending on your trip and how convenient it is to stop in Carcassonne. Overall it is an incredibly popular destination for a reason -- it is a breathtaking time capsule of times gone by.

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Es hat keine Nachteile, eine zweite Sprache zu lernen. Es kann Ihrer Karriere einen Wettbewerbsvorteil verschaffen, Ihre Reiseerfahrungen bereichern und sogar Ihr Gedächtnis und Ihre Wahrnehmung verbessern.

Selbst bei all der zusätzlichen Zeit, die wir zu Hause verbringen, möchte niemand jeden Tag Stunden mit dem Versuch verbringen, eine zweite Sprache zu lernen. Der Lernprozess sollte Spaß machen, ein immersives Erlebnis und vor allen Dingen effizient sein.

Statt sich für eintönige Online-Kurse einzuschreiben oder einen teuren Tutor zu engagieren, sollten Sie darüber nachdenken, Ihre neue Sprache mithilfe einer App zu lernen. Es gibt eine Unmenge von Online-Sprachlernprogrammen, aber wir konzentrieren uns auf die beiden Platzhirsche: Rosetta Stone und Babbel.

Hier finden Sie alles, was Sie wissen müssen

Wichtige Gemeinsamkeiten

  • Bei beiden Anbietern erhalten Sie Apps, mit denen Sie Sprachen auch unterwegs lernen können
  • Beide Apps sind für iOS und Android verfügbar
  • Beides sind Abonnements, die Sie jederzeit pausieren oder kündigen können
  • Bei beiden Anbietern erhalten Sie Lektionen, die Sie herunterladen und ohne WLAN verwenden können

Wichtige Unterschiede

  • Babbel bietet nur 13 Sprachen an, Rosetta Stone jedoch 24
  • Der Funktionsumfang der Rosetta Stone-App ist wesentlich umfangreicher. Mit Funktionen wie TruAccent®, Seek & Speak® und Phrasebook können Sie vollständig in eine neue Sprache eintauchen (mehr dazu weiter unten)
  • Das 24-Monats-Abonnement von Rosetta Stone kostet nur 5,99€ im Monat und bietet Ihnen Zugang zu allen 24 Sprachen
  • Das 24-Monats-Abonnement von Babbel kostet 6,45 $ pro Monat. Obwohl es manchmal Sonderangebote gibt, können Sie nur auf eine Sprache zugreifen

Rosetta Stone – Übersicht

Rosetta Stone ist ein sehr bekannter Name im Bereich des Sprachenlernens und hat sein Angebot mit einer umfangreichen App wirklich aufgewertet. Die Lektionen dauern nur etwa 10 Minuten - kurz genug für die morgendliche Kaffeepause. Ihre App konzentriert sich auf Gesprächstraining, den Erwerb neuer Wendungen und Vokabeln, die Sie tatsächlich in einem echten Gespräche verwenden würden. Zusätzlich zu den sehr fesselnden Lektionen hebt sich Rosetta Stone durch seine Funktionen auf einem neuen Niveau deutlich ab. Die TruAccent®-Funktion hört Sie laut sprechen und hilft Ihnen mit einer Leuchtanzeige, Ihre Aussprache zu perfektionieren. Wir freuen uns auch, dass Sie die angenehm kurzen funktioniert ohne Internetverbindung und ohne WLAN anhören können - perfekt für einen Abendspaziergang. Die Funktionen Phrasebook und Seek & Speak® werden Ihnen auch auf Ihren nächsten Reisen von Nutzen sein. Mit Phrasebook lernen Sie kurze, nützliche Ausdrücke, und mit Seek & Speak® können Sie an einer lustigen Schnitzeljagd nach alltäglichen Dingen wie Obst und Gemüse teilnehmen. Die Funktion schickt Sie auf die Suche nach einer Liste von Gegenständen. Sobald Sie von einem der Gegenstände ein Bild gemacht haben, erhalten Sie das passende Wort dazu. Das Beste ist, dass Sie Ihre Lektionen so strukturieren können, dass Sie die Themen lernen, die Sie am meisten interessieren. Es gibt so viele verschiedene Funktionen und Lernmöglichkeiten, dass uns nicht langweilig wurde und wir immer noch mehr Zeit mit der einfach zu navigierenden App verbringen wollten. Rosetta Stone kostet nur 5,99 € pro Monat für ein 24-Monats-Abonnement, mit dem Sie Zugang zu allen 24 Sprachen haben! Sie bieten auch 24 Sprachen fürs Leben bei 199 €.

Babbel – Übersicht

Babbel bietet 13 Sprachen und mobiles Lernen von jedem Ihrer Geräte aus. Dort nutzt man die so genannte „Babbel-Methode" - gut strukturierte Lektionen, die mit realistischen Szenarien und interaktiven Dialogen aufeinander aufbauen. Wir waren begeistert, Babbel auszuprobieren, weil es angeblich „der schnellste Weg, eine neue Sprache zu lernen" ist Am Anfang hat es uns gefallen, aber die Lehrmethode wirkte auf uns sehr uneinheitlich. Während unsere Redakteurin, die Französisch lernte, überwiegend positive Erfahrungen machte, fand "die andere, die" Italienisch lernte (und eine italienische Partnerin hat), die Lektionen flach und, was am schlimmsten ist, fehlerhaft. Außerdem wurde der Funktionsumfang mit der Zeit etwas langweilig. Wenn Sie Sprachen lernen, ist es von entscheidender Bedeutung, durch ständige Wechsel des Lernstils das Interesse Ihres Gehirns aufrecht zu erhalten. Babbel hat uns also sehr schnell ziemlich gelangweilt.

Abschließende Bemerkungen

Wie schon gesagt, hat das Erlernen einer neuen Sprache keine Nachteile. Sowohl Rosetta Stone als auch Babbel haben sich dieser einst langweiligen Aufgabe angenommen und sie in das 21. Jahrhundert geführt. Wenn Sie jedoch auf der Suche nach der bequemsten, erschwinglichsten und interaktivsten App zum Sprachenlernen mit dem größten Funktionsumfang sind, dann empfehlen wir Ihnen Rosetta Stone. Die App ist einfach zu bedienen, die Lektionen sind als kurze Häppchen aufgebaut, und durch die schiere Menge an verschiedenen Funktionen wurde uns nie langweilig. Es gibt Unmengen an Optionen, aber letztendlich ist Rosetta Stone genau das Richtige für Sie, wenn Sie möglichst effizient eine zweite Sprache lernen möchten. Sie werden im Handumdrehen Wörter und Sätze aufschnappen! Die Leute von Rosetta Stone bieten unseren Lesern ein besonderes Angebot: Erhalten Sie Zugriff auf 24 Sprachen zum Preis von 1.


I adore Cherie, my house cleaner. She started with me three years ago when I moved to my new place. It took a while to get used to her presence in my home, but now she knows precisely what I need. I swear she can read my mind. She's a true gem, and I couldn't do without her.

It was such a bummer when we went into lockdown. Cherie called to say that she wouldn't be able to come over for a while. So I haven't deep-cleaned the house in months. You can just imagine. (Actually, please don't. It's bad enough that I have to think about this disaster.)

It's gotten to the point lately where there's so much clutter and dust that it's affecting my remote work life. So I went searching for a solution. A good old fashioned cleaning person? Or perhaps a cleaning service?

One of the neighbors uses Handy to book cleaning services, so I thought I'd check it out and see how it stacks up against hiring a classic cleaner the traditional way.

Key Similarities

  • Both cleaners are local to your area
  • Both can be booked for recurring cleanings
  • Both can perform deep cleanings and extra services such as cleaning inside fridges, inside stoves, interior windows, and even laundry upon request
  • Both can be provided special directions and procedures

Key Differences

  • Vetting - Pros booked through Handy are vetted and background checked
  • Communication - Remain in contact with Handy's awesome app & 24/7 Customer Support
  • Reputation - Classic Cleaners rely on good word-of-mouth - Pros booked through Handy have exceptional Customer Reviews on their site.
  • Flexible - Classic Cleaners often run into scheduling snags - With Handy, you can adjust bookings, or change the frequency of scheduled cleanings
  • Price - With a Classic Cleaner, prices might fluctuate - Handy offers a variety of affordable plans with immediate upfront pricing before you book

Classic Cleaner Overview

A housecleaning should lighten your mood and release trapped energy - at least that's how I feel when it goes right. But it doesn't always go right.

Classic house cleaners can vary widely. One time, Cherie was on vacation and recommended a substitute who totally went AWOL - just never showed up! The house didn't get cleaned and I had to group chat all my besties and move our book club night from my place to a restaurant.

Scheduling with a classic cleaner can be difficult. Sometimes an 11am cleaning doesn't get into full swing until 12:30pm.

Your classic cleaner may not be equipped with the right supplies. And - the biggest sticking point for me - is the work quality. Your kitchen may be gleaming, but then you discover a horde of dust bunnies under your bed.

And worst of all, just when you've found an exceptional, reliable cleaner, they move away. Or switch careers. Or both. And you're back to where you started.

Handy Overview

If you're wary of having someone you don't know in your home, don't worry. Handy connects you to experienced cleaning professionals in your area - notice the word professional. Pros booked through Handy go through background screenings that utilize the latest credential verification technology, so you can be sure they're the most reliable cleaners out there.

Simply sign up for a monthly, bi-weekly, or weekly plan. Handy's site is so convenient - you can look at reviews and request the Pro you want to work with, and give them instructions before they arrive.

Their savvy app allows you to tweak your schedule and even track a cleaning's progress while the Handy Pro works their magic. Handy's plans are completely flexible - adjust or pause your plan at any time!

Finally, Handy knows health and safety are top of mind and they have taken steps to foster a safe environment and better serve their communities. They prioritize the health and safety of the professionals and customers who use their platform by implementing the Handy Safety Standard.

Not only have face coverings been provided to professionals to wear during bookings, Handy also requires professionals to complete a daily in-app checkup confirming that they are not experiencing symptoms before they can claim jobs. In addition to this, Handy's communicating CDC health and safety guidelines and best practices to both customers and professionals to practice before, during, and after booking appointments.

It's clear to me that the Pros available through Handy have the training and experience to turn my nightmare of a house into a dream palace.

Final Notes

What more is there to say? Handy is straight-up transparent and, overall, a super experience. Compared to a traditional cleaner they knock it clean out of the ballpark - and I do mean clean.

Update: The folks at Handy are extending a Special offer to our readers. For a limited time follow this link to get a special offer on a cleaning plan!

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Taking Control Of Your Finances Has Never Been Easier With Truebill

See Exactly Where You Dollars Are Going With Truebill

Personal finance is extremely complicated. But we don't really like to admit it. There's this weird expectation that once you're thrown out into the real world, you're required to know every little thing about finance. Where does that stigma even come from? I never took a single finance class in school, nor was I ever given the option.

I looked up the best way to manage money online and was greeted with a slew of Microsoft Excel tutorials. Is this really the best way to do this? I mused over the different chapters on formulas but felt like I was reading a different language.

I didn't have time to learn a brand new software, but I still needed a way to stay on-top of my finances. I knew there had to be an easier way (and obviously there was).

While on the phone with my cousin, I mentioned the difficulties I experienced while trying to manage my finances. Since we're both in our twenties, I knew that she'd be able to relate, but I never expected to receive such helpful advice. She mentioned an app called Truebill, which she described as "the best way to take control of your money."

After quickly looking through the app's features, I knew this was the tool I was looking for. Truebill offers everything, including subscription canceling, bill negotiation, pay advances, and more! The entire app is designed to optimize your spending and stay on top of your financial life.

Here's everything you need to know:

How Does It Work?

Truebill is the tried and true way to manage your personal finances. In fact, Truebill provides the most transparent view I've ever had into my finances. It works by aggregating all of your account information into a centralized location, then provides actionable insights you can take to organize your finances, lower your spending, and save yourself time. Once you connect your accounts, you're good to go!

What Features Does Truebill Offer?

Truebill offers a range of services, including on-demand credit reports and pay advances, but I found the subscription cancellation and bill negotiation features to be the most useful.

Every little subscription and bill is neatly organized, letting you know exactly what you're currently paying for. Not only did Truebill help me cut out $40 a month from unnecessary subscriptions (with a click of a button), they even helped me negotiate my electric bill, giving me 20% back in the process.

Is It Easy To Use?

While spreadsheets are great in a lot of ways, they sure aren't fun to use. In fact, most personal finance assistants aren't very accessible. All of these apps boast incredibly complicated interfaces that are impossible to navigate.

Luckily, Truebill's interface is seamless and easy to understand. Upon opening the app, you'll see an overview of your spending, your current subscriptions, as well as a budget planner and bill tracker. It's all neatly outlined to let you take the best steps possible to optimizing your spending habits.

Is It Secure?

Absolutely! Truebill uses bank-level security with 256-bit SSL encryption. It is one of the most secure encryption methods and is used in most modern encryption algorithms and technologies. This encryption also allows read-only access, meaning that, if there are any breaches, your account will be safe from hackers.

Is It Affordable?

Yes, it's free! There are a ton of features available upon download, but if you're looking to unlock the full potential of Truebill, you may want to consider their premium version. In fact, Truebill allows users to choose their own price for their premium service. Users report that the small monthly cost is easily offset by the savings they accumulate from using the premium service.

Why Do I Need This?

Everyone could use some help in managing their finances. There's no reason to struggle with something so complicated, especially when there is a service that can do it for you. Your time is important and Truebill values that.

I can think of dozens of things I'd rather spend my time doing each day than monitoring my finances and budgeting. So why do I love Truebill so much? It's simple. I wouldn't be able to live my best life without it.

Update: Our friends at Truebill are extending a special offer to our readers! Follow this link to sign-up for Truebill.

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