Exploring St. Laurent du Var, France

On Monday, we woke up refreshed after about 12.5 blissful hours of sleep. Eric rushed off to Cannes, about 35 kilometers southwest. Unfortunately, Eric had a hard time fining the correct road to Cannes and got lost yet again. Also, the traffic was really bad. He eventually made it, though quite late. His conference was only so-so, primarily because today’s program focused on facets that didn’t directly apply to him. On his way back to Nice, he again got lost.

Christi had a leisurely morning. She reviewed French vocabulary words, did a little work on the Internet for her Parentella job, and took a long bath (with no bathtub aboard Kosmos, baths are a rare luxury for her!) before setting off at 1100. Unlike yesterday, which was warm and sunny and full of people, today it was cool, overcast and almost deserted.

She walked west to the end of the boardwalk. The beach area didn’t continue for much farther past the Snack we’d eaten at last night. Beyond the beach was a very large marina, filled mostly with boats under 50 feet.

The boardwalk continued for the Continue reading Exploring St. Laurent du Var, France

On Our Way to Nice, France

A few weeks ago, Eric was told he was going to Cannes, France for a week on a business trip. All the rooms in Cannes were booked, so he would be staying in Nice. We absolutely loved France, so Christi decided to tag along.

Nice is on the Mediterranean coast in an area called Cote d’Azur (AKA the French Riviera). On our world circumnavigation, we made four stops in Cote d’Azur: MonacoSaint Tropez , Le Lavandou, and  Isle de Porquerrolles, so we were excited to be able to visit some of the places we had missed.

On Saturday morning, we left the boat at 0800. When we got to the airport, we were shocked to see it was shut down, with a fire truck and police cars outside the baggage claim area. We were told the building had been evacuated a half hour ago due to a fire. Whatever the problem was, it was clearly at the opposite end of the terminal from our gate. We were terrified our plane would leave late and we’d miss our connecting flight. After another half hour, everyone was allowed back in. Fortunately, things returned to normal quickly and our flight left on time.

Leg one was uneventful. During the first layover, we found out that on Friday, a Southwest plane had a small piece of the roof come off mid-flight and the cabin de-pressurized. They had to make an emergency landing. Not everyone could get their oxygen masks on in time and some suffered injuries as a result. 10% of the Southwest flights scheduled for Saturday had been cancelled for further plane inspections. Oy vey. We were relieved we were on a different airline.

Fortunately, both the second and third legs were also totally uneventful for us. We arrived at the Nice airport, where we rented a car. Our hotel was just a few thousand yards from the airport as the bird flies, but for the life of us, we couldn’t find the right road to get there. After being seriously lost for about fifteen minutes, we eventually found the hotel, the Holiday Inn. Our initial impression of Nice was that it looks like a typical Mediterranean town, with many 4 10 story blocky concrete apartment houses. Most are painted a pastel color and either have flat roofs or red tiled pitched roofs. Most of the buildings we saw look like they were from the 20th century, though we did pass an area that looked like it may have been more historic.

Our hotel is located right on the L’Atoll beach. Our room is charming and has a lovely view of the ocean.

By the time we Continue reading On Our Way to Nice, France