Clear skies, blue water, and lots and lots of people on the beach. This was our view from lunch one day.
We’ve just wrapped up five days in Cannes, mostly on the beach. There’s not a lot to talk about when much of the day is spent sitting on a chair on the beach. Sun, reading, cooling off in the water … that’s about it.
It’s worth noting, though, that Cannes is a strange place. It’s the only place I can think of where you honestly see Rolls Royces being driven around, along with a lot of other terribly expensive cars. Yachts, lots of yachts. You see – in fact, we sat right behind one – apparently very rich old ladies on the beach wearing much, much less than you wish they were, with their aides sitting in a chair immediately next to them. The aide’s job is to continually adjust the umbrella so that the sun is hitting just where she wants it but not in her eyes. And readjust the towel she’s lying on if it gets a little bunched up. And move the beach chair – with the old lady still lying in it – as the sun moves throughout the day. You can spend a fortune renting chairs and umbrellas on the beach and can easily spend $200 for lunch. But you can also stumble onto – as we did – small local restaurants that serve fantastic food at very reasonable prices. A strange mix of very rich and beautiful with very reasonable and normal.
You might guess that the film industry is big here. This cool mural was our view at another lunch stop.
This Nicoise Salad was from our very, very favorite restaurant in Cannes. We had lunch there twice and were heartbroken when we went on our last day and it was closed on Sunday. Just a block off the beach it’s obviously a family run place. Unpretentious as could be, they spoke very little English and had the best steak tartare I’ve ever eaten. I’d go back to Cannes just for that.
Erica and her flute (along with the soon-to-be bride) in an 11th or 12th century church in Mons
There were a couple interesting side trips. Our first full day there we drove up into Mons, a tiny hilltop town in the foothills of the Alps, where my former assistant in the VAN office was playing in a pre-wedding concert. Erica is the niece of an old college friend of Mark’s (which is how we met her), who was also there along with his partner and mother. The concert was great, the town was beautiful, and it was great fun to have dinner afterwards with the whole family.
(Note: Mark & I remain traumatized by cars. We had to rent a car to get to Mons and that whole process of driving out of the city, up into the hills, back down and into the city, getting gas, returning the car … traumatic. We’ve been carless since 2008 and our freakish terror of cars is just getting worse.)
Mark’s old college friend David, Mark, David’s partner Mike, and David’s mother Florence. At 87, Florence was remarkably active and fun, a delight to spend time with.
And then two days later, while Erica was at the wedding, Mark & I took a train up to Nice to have dinner with David, Mike, and Florence. Again great fun to see old friends and spend an evening in a pretty cool city.
A playground fountain in Nice. When we were here two years ago this was all under construction but now it’s a pretty fun place.
The same fountain area a little later in the evening
So that’s it. Beach, sun, some old friends, and a fun concert. Now it’s off to Montpellier for two days, just to break up the trip to Barcelona where we’re going to spend a week with Mark’s brother and his family.
What blog post would be complete without a picture of Mark & a cat? This very BooBoo-esque cat was sitting in that chair when we went to dinner in Mons and was perfectly comfortable letting Mark pick him up and resettle in his lap. You have to love France and its approach to cats and dogs in restaurants.
And while we’re on the subject of cats … Sylvester & Tweetybird rest at the entrance to our favorite lunch restaurant in Cannes. Mark likes pretty much all cats, even plastic ones.
Finally, Boston Bear has been complaining that he’s not getting enough photo space in our blog, so here he is resting after a big night out in Cannes