Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Reunited and it feels so good

It’s hard to know where to start... it’s been a pretty action-packed trip. I flew into Nice, France on August 11th- the very day after I was done with work (teaching ballet for the summer). I clearly wasn’t wasting any time. Today, on August 22nd, I’m en route back to the U.S. The percentage of me that wanted to fly home is pretty much non-existent. I got to spend over 10 days in paradise, and on top of that I got to actually be in the same country as David! Who I hadn’t seen for over 2 months.

Even though I’m excited to write about my sightseeing days in Nice, Italy and Monaco, it would bother me oh so much if I didn’t document the trip chronologically, so here it goes!

My first day spent with David was a beach day in Mandelieu-la-Napoule. To refresh your memory, this is the town where he just started working. We will most likely be living in the neighboring city of Cannes for the next year. Even though the beach was fairly busy since this was a holiday weekend in France, it was still calm and relaxing since Mandelieu is so small. 

The biggest bonus of Mandelieu’s beach is that not only are you swimming in the lovely turquoise Mediterranean, you’re swimming right outside of a castle. This place gave me impossibly high expectations for every future beach day I have in my life. In case you’re wondering, I have officially claimed this castle as my own. I’m a fan. 

We had lunch with David’s parents and his mom’s cousin (Gilbert- who he’s currently staying with). Then it was back to the beach until sundown, at which time I was fed once again by David’s family. Such a hard life. 

Our days on Sunday and Monday went pretty much the same (food, beach, food, beach, food), with the exception of checking out church in Le Cannet for the first time on Sunday, and doing our first beach session in Cannes instead of Mandelieu on Monday. 

Castle at the Mandelieu beach

View from Gilbert’s apartment- just 5 minute walk to the sea!

Beach in Cannes- crowded due to the holiday weekend

A casual sand sculpture we totally built ourselves

Red carpet from the Cannes film festival

Sadly, our days of leisure had to come to an end because of being adults. David started his new job on Tuesday, so I was left to my own devices during work hours. I took the opportunity to explore Cannes. My hotel was in Cannes, but until that point I had been too busy being lazy to see much of it. 

I walked through the Centre-Ville shopping district, and then did a small hike (it felt long because it was HOT) up to Le Suquet, the old city of Cannes. The views on the hill were well-worth a little bit of suffering.


Wanderings around Cannes:

This was my favorite street I came across- Rue Meynadier. It's a completely pedestrian street with tons of shops, restaurants, and tourists.

Cannes is actually pretty small. It’s mostly a tourist city. I had 3 French people (who are from elsewhere but now live there) complain to me this week that it’s not a “real” city. Poor little French people who are used to having so much culture and history surround them. I still really enjoyed Cannes, but it’s true that there’s not a ton to do there besides the beach and the shopping. I imagine it might get boring in the winter if you don’t TRAVEL. Which I definitely plan to do :)

On Tuesday night I hopped on a short train ride to Mandelieu to meet up with the breadwinner. His first day went pretty well besides the slight shock of finding out about the required 2 hour lunch break, which means he’s going to get home every night later than he thought. I treated him to dinner at an Italian restaurant (a + of the French Riviera: it’s proximity to Italy = delicious Italian food) to celebrate a successful first day.

Look at how much cheese my gnocchi is bathed in :) :) :)

David told me I was being like his mom because I forced him to take pictures hahaha

Here’s a few more shots of Mandelieu- this street is really all there is to it!

We ended our night with a sunset walk around my beach castle. C’est un peu romantique, n’est-ce pas?

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