I have a new goal in life: To become an old French woman. Sound crazy? Unrealistic? Just damn silly? Probably all of the above, but nonetheless it's true. I love the old women in France. They are always very dressed up, high heels and stockings on to go to the grocery store. Their make up is well done and heavy; their hair some faded shade of dye that no one is buying as natural. They go about their business walking up and down the massive hills that this part of France has without showing any sign of extra effort. Meanwhile, we walk by huffing and puffing our way up to our hostel. The old French women here are pretty fabulous.
So what have I been up to the past couple of days? On Tuesday, there was a major transportation strike so getting around was made extremely difficult. So we decided to explore Nice. We walked down to the Fruit and Flower Market in town, enjoying the smells and variety that the market had to offer. I really wanted a couple of trinkets that reminded me of people at home, but I reconsidered given the already overly heavy status of my luggage. After that we walked down to the beach and ate lunch. It was beautiful out and both Anna and I got some serious color in only about an hour. The beaches here have stones not sand so that was pretty interesting. We walked up to this chateau that provides an amazing view of the city. I am going to have great legs by the end of the week. We have done nothing but walk stairs and inclines since we got here. The view proved pretty gorgeous and the warm weather made it pretty perfect. Anna and I decided that we need to own a yacht though, to truly take advantage of our surroundings. A girl can dream... We then walked through old town which is a really cute area with shops and plazas. We got some gelatto and settled down in the square and people watched. Next, we headed over to the Contemporary Art Museum and took a look around. I don't really get contemporary art. Some is pretty cool, others just plain weird. There was this one display with pigs that I didn't realize had formerly been alive and were now stuffed that sent me over the edge and booking it in the opposite direction. We headed back to the hostel, made some dinner, and had a chill night.
Yesterday, we went to Eze Village and Monacco. Eze Village is this medieval village high up on a hill. Google it to see some pretty incredible pictures. It was sooo cool. This place was straight out of the history books. There were these tiny little shops everywhere and you could buy coffee and sit on a cliff overlooking the Mediterannean Sea. We found our way into a little restaurant and got come brown sugars crepes. Pretty much amazing. We spent the day with two roommates from Texas who proved to be really fun travel companions. We caught a bus to Monacco and decided to explore. Meh, that's how I feel about Monacco. It was okay. We couldn't find the beach and settle for a cement platform by the waves. Super wealthy, super beautiful port but not some place I'll probably find myself again. We saw the casino but it was too early to go in. I think that in order to experience Monacco properly you need to stay in a beautiful hotel there, spend some time on a yacht, and shop in a story like Gucci without blinking an eyelash. Then it would be pretty awesome. The sights were still lovely, and hey, I still got to get a tan next to the Mediterranean so I'm not complaining. We went out with some fellow hostel friends for a drink at a place called Wayne's. It caters to an international crowd and was a really good time.
Today Anna and I were supposed to go to Marseilles to meet her friend. But once I found out that the ticket was going to be about 30 euro round trip and realizing that I have some stuff to take care of for school, I bailed on that plan. Instead, her friend is coming to meet us in Nice tonight so that should be fun. Anna and I explored the Matisse Museum this morning. I'm a fan of his sculptures, but not so much his sketches. They also had a temporary display of work by Robert De Niro Sr. because apparently their use of line is similar. They had some vintage pictures of Robert De Niro Jr and Sr which were pretty cool. Now, I'm trying to get some work done and we might try to go the beach in a bit so I'm going to get to work. I think tomorrow will be another beach day and we are trying to go to Cannes and Antibes on Saturday.
With love from France.