Nice…is Nice: Part 1

After a two-week hiatus while traveling around, I’m back. I needed a little break from computer-dependency, and my computer charger died so mister mac has been out of commission. I’ve got a couple thousand pictures to upload though and so many stories it makes my head spin. I wasn’t going to blog on my trip because it takes so long, but I change my mind and I’m going to go back to the frequency of Paris. Hopefully I can play catch-up in the next few days so I can start posting in real time.

Nice was my favorite part of the trip so far, maybe because it was the first departure point from Paris, or maybe because I got to take the overnight train in first class because there was a 60 year old chinese man in my all ladies cabin, or because I managed to find the “best hostel in Europe” according to a woman I met in Marseille because of its incredible bar, proximity to the beach, and fun staff. Maybe it’s because I got to sunbathe topless, make a ton of friends, and spend my graduation day in Cannes with one of my best friends. Maybe all of the above? Anyways, I, in cheesy terms, left a little piece of my heart there, and have considered many times just cancelling the rest of my trip and heading back (not really) but am happy to have it as a happy memory.

The first day I found a flower, soap, and fruit market, then an eco-market where I bought something way too big to fit into my backpack for my dad (which I shipped to Paris later on) then walked around to get the lay of the land, and hit the contemporary art museum.

The second day I hiked up to the top of the “chateau” which isn’t really a chateau but a platform where the chateau was… I hiked up to the Chagall and Matisse museums (note: museums dedicated to a painter who lived in the area however many years ago aren’t usually that awesome, because everyone’s work is strew about the planet from the Met to the Louvre now).

I also did a day trip to Antibes where I met the most wonderful olive man who tried to marry me off to a toddler, stuffed me with olives and fruit, and gave me the most delicious sun dried tomatoes I ate on the beach with some arugula before going to the Picasso museum where I was sorely disappointed in the lack of…well…art. The town was quaint, and flooded with adorable, tiny little tourists to banter with and locals to practice my newly flourishing French with. It’s crumbled to pieces now though, sigh.

When I got back I hit the wine with my bar buddies (yes, it’s always a good idea to befriend the bar staff) then the next day was spent at a beautiful, sandy, topless beach. Yes, I partook in the nudity for a bit. When I came back and had the most amazing salmon dinner with wild rice courtesy of the chef who made fresh, clean, mostly organic meals for 8 euros, then had the urge to run to the beach to watch the sunset where I met a woman, Nadia, from South Africa. We took pictures of each other for each other and talked, then I came back, and got the news that my cousin (who I have deemed my niece) was born and I just cried and cried. Then I got a bunch of people to toast rose in her honor.

I also went to Cannes (on the same day as graduation) with a Chilean man from my hostel who looked like Javier Bardem and took a boat to a 1000 year old monastery, then met Hilaria and went to a book party, which called for heels so we had to have an emergency shopping trip to get me out of my black evil sneakers. Overall, it was freaking awesome.

I’m going to do the pictures in rounds, starting with a few dozen but ending only a few into the contemporary art museum because the internet was so slow, and my computer, well, is in a coma. Lots to come. Brace yourselves. After Nice was Marseille, then Aix-en-Provence (good story how that town ended up in the mix) then Istanbul, then Crete! Off to Prague on friday. I’m lucky, I know, I really do.

*UPDATE: I currently have SAND in my computer so we will see what that means for updates… I’m going to the apple store in Prague on friday but I might just have to wing it until I’m in NYC and can buy a new laptop without fear of it being stolen. Damn beach. Fingers crossed!

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