Margaret Can do Cannes

Cannes, France:

The ship arrived at about 7 am in Cannes (in French say “kahn”) today on another beautiful and warm morning. Up at 7:00, breakfast in La Veranda, Margaret decided to stay in and meet me at 1:00 pm. Caught tender to shore at 8:15, walked a short distance to bus #7 with a German tour guide that sounded suspiciously French. As we were driving south down very narrow roads in a bus, we saw one fancy hotel after another, the building where the Cannes film festival is held (just a couple weeks back) and even past a hotel called Hotel California where all the Russians stay. In that part of town the guide said that when you walk down the street at night almost all the people are speaking Russian.

Drove over 1 hour down the shore road to Nice, past Antibes.  There were an amazing number of high rise (about 6-8 floors) apartments looking out over the ocean and as far back from the coast as we could see. We were dropped off next to a park and were told to meet at 12:15 which gave us one hour to walk around town.   The tour guide walked us through a bit of old town Nice past the town square to the opera building pointing out some interesting things along the way.  This was typical of most of the tours.  They would say we would have an hour to look around but then take about half that time walking us around.  Usually works out but you have to rush after they are through with their diatribes.

Walked through the flower market which was quite large. Turned to the left and walked down a typical old town alley, stopping at a café with a few tables and a couple that had a black lab with a huge tennis ball in his mouth.  I became his best friend instantly, had an espresso, threw the ball about 10 times, fed him the last bit of my croissant, took a picture of him, used the free toilet and was on my way. Did some exploring, finding a small carousel in the park where we were to be picked up and took some pictures.  Found cafe next to the bus stop and had another coffee before catching the bus.

When we got back to the dock area the small train that we were to catch wasn’t there and our guide told me that it would arrive in about 15 minutes. That meant that with the 1 hour and 15 minute small train shuttle we wouldn’t arrive back until 2:15. I told her that I was to meet Margaret at 1:00 so couldn’t go. After waiting about 30 minutes, reading my Red Notice novel about the Russian oligarchs that are buying up property around here, Margaret showed up. Yeah!

We walked out of the port and down the main drag in Cannes. We stopped at the first café that looked very French with tables with table clothes (very important for Margaret) on the sidewalk. We picked well. The waiter was great, spoke great English, as well as a few other languages, and he helped us pick out a nice French Rose (that looked very white), a salad, moulles (mussels), linguine with pesto and a huge seafood platter. OK, that’s a lot of food but I was schooled on the bus that you were to have about 2.5 hour lunches here in France and not have a care in the world. It worked! We had a great time and ate almost all the food. Finished off with a very strong espresso that was a great way to end a great lunch.

Walked around town, past the Cannes film festival building which is, by the way, nothing to write home about, then turned inwards and walked back up the hill to the castle.  It was actually an art museum but it went quickly. We then marched up the steep stairs to the top of the castle where a nice, attractive young woman asked me to take her picture. With Margaret’s permission I obliged.  She then took a picture of Margaret and me and was quite the photographer, even reshooting after I noticed that I had set the ISO at 4,000 for Margaret to take pictures inside the museum.

We walked down the hill and explored town a bit more, taking pictures of interesting doorways and windows for our designer Scott.  Just before we reached the parking lot where the tender dock was located we witnessed a huge argument between what looked to be family members.  Fortunately, someone who worked at the restaurant broke them up but it was really something while it lasted.  After sweating while waiting for the next tender we loaded up with a bus full of fellow passengers and made our way back to to the ship. I stopped by the Observation Lounge on the way back to our room to pick up a couple Pink Flowers from Mihaela while Margaret took a shower. Then, while watching Fox News, I took a shower, put on my slacks and white shirt, yellow tie and blue blazer and took a call from Matt and Amy. We hoped to meet them in the O.L. as this was their last night on the ship. If we didn’t see them we had their contact information and hoped to see them in Carmel in the next couple months.

We headed to the O.L., grabbed a couple more Pink Flowers from Mihaela, our favorite bartender, and sat down to enjoy the beautiful scenery. Within a few minutes Matt and Amy came in and sat with us and we had a great time with them. They headed out to Prime 7 and we went for dinner at Compass Rose.  I’m not sure that I mention that each day, the kitchen would send our menus for the next day  to our room so we could pre-select our meals for the next night.  Then, they make sure that they make a gluten-free version of that meal.  I’m also not sure that I’ve told you that despite this, Margaret gets the urge once in a while to order a pizza from room service at 11:00 pm.  This night was no exception.  She clearly seemed to be back in the game.  This night it was even pepperoni.  We’re bad but the pizza, as average as it was, was good!!!

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