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Published: November 16th 2019
On Friday, October 11, we departed our lovely apartment in L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue heading for Nice. We first had to stop at McDonalds to get WiFi since we had been incommunicado overnight and knew our family would be wondering if we were still alive. LOL!! It was a beautiful sunny, warm day and our trip was approximately 250 Km. Again most of the journey was on the motorway and our toll for this trip was 22.10E. We exited the motorway onto the Promenade de Anglais which took us past the modern airport, along the Mediterranean and into the city. The address of our apartment was 10 Rue Centrale in Vieux Nice and we were hoping to drop our belongings at the apartment before returning the car at around 5 PM. We contacted the landlady who was to meet us and she said she would be at the apartment at 4 PM. OK, we thought, that gives us time to buy our provisions and have everything safely in the apartment before we don't have a car. The parking garage we found was quite close to Monoprix so we stocked up on the essentials. For some unknown reason we decided to move the car to
another parking garage(we must have thought it was closer to the apartment-NOT) and took our suitcases and backpacks and headed for the apartment. Do you think we could find Rue Centrale? NO! I think we must have been going around in circles but finally found 10 Rue Centrale and there was Francoise waiting by the door. We were 15 minutes late!!! She opened the door and there facing us once again were two flights of steep stairs. We hauled our load up and very quickly Francoise explained the important details and we had to quickly excuse ourselves and hustle back through the crowded streets to the car. We do not have time to take the groceries, etc now. As the GPS guided us to the car return address it suddenly jolted into our minds that we had to leave the car filled with gas so we had to find a gas station in downtown Nice. Horrors!! Luckily the GPS found one not too far from where we were and we topped up the tank and headed once more to the car rental return garage. Unfortunately the address was not the garage but the office and there was no where to
park so I jumped out to find out where the garage was and Bonnie carried on. The office attendant explained where the garage was and how to get to it but Bonnie was no where to be seen. I stood on the street corner thinking that she eventually would return. She did and after much stress we manoeuvred the car into the garage- WITHOUT A SCRATCH!!!!! WHEW!!!!!
We gathered the rest of our belongings, which consisted of at least four bags full, and found the taxi stop. We approached the first taxi in line and asked if he could take us to 10 Rue Centrale. We knew it was not far but a bit too far for us to lug our heavy load. Base rate 20 E!! Bonnie said," You've got to be kidding! We taxied across Paris for 23E and this is just a few blocks". Too bad! He didn't want to lose his spot in the cue and wasn't going to take a short fare so we became true bag ladies in Nice!!! Loaded down with two paper shopping bags each which held some heavy bottles (can't imagine what would be in them) we started off. We
might have walked about 10 minutes when the bags started to rip. We tried our best to rearrange things but to no avail. We were in a bad way. Never shy to ask, Bonnie popped into a little bar and asked if they had a bag we might use since ours were deteriorating quickly. After a few minutes a friendly French girl appeared with a large Monoprix shopping bag which we loaded up with the heavy items and we started off again thanking her profusely for her kindness. Needless to say when we finally got back to the apartment, we were ready to put our feet up and enjoy some of what was in those heavy bottles.
Saturday morning dawned sunny and warm and our plan for today was to visit Monaco. We were up and out the door by 9:30 and had an enjoyable walk to the bus station through the fairly quiet streets of Nice. There were quite a few people lined up to take Bus 100 to Monaco. For 1.50E, this might possibly be one of the most beautiful bus rides in the world although we would say it is tied with the Amalfi Coast bus
ride we took from Sorrento to Positano a few years ago. The 50 minute ride takes you along the Mediterranean through several picturesque towns and drops you in Monte Carlo. We walked through the beautiful gardens down to the Casino Square where we were surrounded by haute couture boutiques, jewellery stores and a parade of luxury cars. We did not enter the Casino as there is a fee and we are not in the same class as those who frequent this casino. We walked down to the Port. This is where the start, finish and pits of the Monaco Grand Prix are located on race day and many bars and less expensive shops line the street. From here we continued on to Place d'Armes where there was a bustling market. We followed the crowd up the steep pathway to the Palace grounds where we saw the end of the changing of the guards and entered the Cathedral where Princess Grace and Prince Rainier were married and are now buried. We enjoyed walking along the winding sidewalk enjoying the beautiful vistas from atop the cliffs.
Having seen the "high" spots of Monaco we walked back down the hill and caught
the bus back to Nice. From the bus stop we walked around the Port of Nice where we saw many beautiful yachts and boats of every description. We wended our way along the Promenade de Anglais and came upon the pebbly beach that was quite crowded with sunbathers- even a few topless. The Promenade is lined with restaurants, bars and hotels and since we were ready for our sit down we found a bar that overlooked the Sea and we sat and enjoyed the view. As the afternoon was waning we wandered through the Cours Saleya Market which overflows with fresh produce, cheese, olives, herbs, flowers and charm. It was winding down so we continued on and browsed through some shops. We met up with a group of yellow vested protesters and had a chat with a Frenchman who explained why they were protesting. Luckily it was peaceful and we were in no danger.
As the sun was setting we returned to our little nest for a quiet evening watching the English channels BBC and CNN. We really have not watched much TV but have been able to watch Netflix through our Ipad.
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