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Yesterday was Saturday, meaning Pete grocery shopped at the Cours Saleya open market and then at the Monoprix grocery store. Simone likes to go along as she makes the lists and carries the heavy groceries. Annika and I chilled in the apartment until we grew tired of our own laziness and went to Jean Medecin shopping area to check out the H&M store & Claire’s. When we returned, Simone had made each of us sandwiches for lunch using fresh croissants from Ble d’Azur; her favourite bakery.
Today we took the #100 bus to Monaco. Sad face. The park that the girls have been dreaming about returning to – was renovated for smaller children…and the monkey bars were gone! I explained this as an example why I am not fond of returning to a place I already know – as it might be impossible to experience the same good memories a second time. Poor Simone and Annika. It really just wasn’t their day! (Simone also wanted a ham and cheese panini like the first one she ever ate in her life in Monaco. That didn’t quite work out either.). Incidentally, in Monaco next to the palace where the changing if the guard takes place, there were lines of people sitting on curbs eating paninis. Without any further reflection or input, we decided to dub the Principality of Monaco as the panini capital of Europe!
Today I reserved a sea excursion from Nice to St. Tropez for Wednesday. That will be our last big excursion before we blow his popsicle stand. On Tuesday we plan on hanging out for the day at Hi Beach, one of the private beaches.
Tonight we went out for dinner in Place Rosetti. We have never eaten in that area before, yet we have walked through probably 10 times or more already on this trip. Our waiter wasn’t a funny guy, but one who smirked as he held back with his English when we spoke French. Initially he joked that maybe we were locals from Nice as we each took our turn ordering. (No matter how little we say in French, they would never be fooled!) At one point we thought he said to us ‘You could be suave’, but we weren’t sure and we didn’t ask for a repeat because it was more fun to just believe he said that!
After the beach and Pete’s run tonight, we were amazed 3 different times when people asked us questions on the walk. Even more amazing, some of our answers were useful. It might have been Pete’s white hair that made us a target for a Greek mythology question which Annika answered. (Hope Mercury in Roman mythology is Hermes in Greek!). Then some Italian tourists asked us to point them in the direction of Place Girabaldi – which we could do easily. The 3rd question was, is it necessary to pay for parking on our Rue, to which we responded ‘We don’t know….we don’t live here.’ as Simone and Annika were shaking the outside door of our apartment (sticky lock, making it appear as if we were breaking in!)
Our bus adventures continue! At 1€ per person for a bus ride within 90 minutes of Nice, why not explore? Today we travelled to Biot Village, a ‘perched village’ in the mountains. Our challenge: to arrange for a transfer (une correspondence) when we boarded the first bus (#200). That part went smoothly. By the way, the Nice bus station which was across the street from our 2010 apartment is now almost torn down. Bus stands are scattered across at least 3 surrounding streets – just to add a wrinkle to our plans. La la la. After boarding the 2nd bus (#10) we somehow realized we weren’t traveling in the right direction…which the driver confirmed then let us out…to traverse the street…and beg our way onto the next bus with tickets that were already validated. No sweat!…as in effort,, because it was easily 40C outside with no shortage of sweating going on! So far the buses have had AC when they didn’t in 2010.
Biot is known for the glass blowing trade. There was one demonstration shop on the street, but there wasn’t much activity to see there. I have just now read the others are on the outskirts of town, which (a) doesn’t help now; and (b) wouldn’t have been easily accessiible by us on foot. I did have the T.I. office address with me. I wish now we had stopped in to get their advice. As it was, we had a great lunch on a patio; and looking in the stores was entertaining. (Although, we may have seen most of the types of wares before in other places – with the exception of the leather shop where the girls were asked not to touch to prevent fingerprints on the leather. The blown glass pieces were lame.)