Published: August 19th 2009July 28th 2009
Day 446 Step 15478
Up at at 'em early bound for Monaco! The streets were under preparation for the start of the Tour de France, we were happy to have a look around before the start of the tour. Our first stop was the Royal Palace complete with cannons, guards and magnificent views. Further along the cobblestone streets we checked out the Cathedral and the Place of Justice (very impressive old buildings) making it back to the Palace in time for the daily changing of the guard but were equally amuzed by dodging the umbrella's and elbows of the asian's beside us desperate for 100 'perfect' shots.
Next stop was the much anticipated Monaco Casino and it didn't disappoint. We waited outside for the 2pm opening watching the Bentleys, Ferraris, Mercades line the entrance of the casino. We entered for a ten Euro admission fee and identification check, unfortunately Leanne had forgotten her licence and was not allowed through under any circumstances (And was continually harrassed outside whilst tyring to take a seat). We took in our glamorous surrounds before heading to the roulette table. In a nutshell, Jez did his dosh very quickly while Carly's low yet effective betting brought
Jez back into the game. And I'm convinced staff secretly enjoyed watching us with our comparsionly tiny bets come away with a win, grandly announcing "vhalha madam moiselle". Collectively we walked out 80 Euro richer. Grinning from ear to ear we met Leanne and Brian and headed back to Nice aboard the express train.
That evening we listened to Lleyton exit from Wimbledon against Andy Roddick.
Day One of the Tour de France Monaco. After a relaxing morning at home we returned to Monaco for the 'Grand depart'. We joined Terry who had arrived earlier at a perfect position 70m from the finishing line and with a great view of the huge TV's and spotted Chris (Aussie mate from Birmingham) opposite us.
The day started with a parade and us trying to get hold of as many 'give-away's' as possible hats, water, big hands, washing powder, biscuits and pom-poms's. We took in the sights and enjoyed our prepacked picnic lunch roadside and a couple of cold beers. We kitted Brian up in new cycling gear in a hot 'Silence Lotto' number (as a late present) Cadel Evans team and eagerly awaited timestrials to start.
Lance Armstrong stole
the show with the camera's focused on him once within sight of the start and well after the conclusion of his race putting him in third position. Cadel raced second last and proved slightly disappointing a trend that was set to continue for the rest of the tour.
After a long walk back to the train station we made it back to Nice for Icecream and Pizza for dinner (in that order). Cleaned up the apartment and crashed for a long hot night.
Up and at em at 5am we made it to the station for our 6am train bound for Spain. Unfortunately, the company had gone on strike earlier this morning.. bugger! After a lengthy wait in the queue we finally found an alternate option getting in just a hour later, but had three hours to kill in the meantime. We headed to Macca's, waited for it to open, had breaky (no coffee as they we out of milk.. since when does Macca's run out of milk?), organised our photo's and listened to third quarter of the St. Kilda game.. Go saints!
After three trains, a tram and a twenty minute walk we arrived at our
Brian and his Balls
Known as a brass monkey
hostel in San Sebastian at 10pm, just 15hours after we started our day. We walked back into town past the beautiful promanade (regretfully failed to take any pic's) and grabbed some good burgers at the only place still serving food.
There are more photos below