Piano Bar in Nice

I recently had tapas and a cocktail at a piano bar in Nice, as I enjoy trying out new places.  menu

Being a Friday evening, the jazz band began tuning up and started their first (early) set to add music to the lovely ambiance of the place.  My only complaint is the champagne was served in a tulip glass that seemed small (or maybe I just wanted more!) but the cocktails were generous servings, as well as the food.

All in all, Le Kosma is a very nice, cozy place to relax, enjoy a cocktail and tapas while listening to some great music.  La vie est belle!

cocktails tapas wall mural bar band bnad2

 

Living in your Dream Location  – Dare you ask for a dream job and income too?

terrace view VillefrancheNo matter where you are or where your dream destination may be, the one thing we all share is the pursuit of attaining or maintaining our exceptional lifestyles.

Opening up to our authentic selves in a new location or change of direction, also brings to the surface other simmering desires; such as transforming our newly-stimulated creativity into a dream job to accompany our transformation.

From Fantasy to Feasibility

For example, living in France, think how life could be: producing your own olive oil and selling it in local markets, writing the book that has been buried deep within you for so long , holding cooking classes in your new Provencal kitchen, opening your own Bed & Breakfast in the middle of the vineyards and Chateaux, …… the list goes on into the horizon of the setting sun.

The question is, can all this enchantment work financially?  Let’s take a look at the 3 main impediments to growing a healthy business.  Two of them you have little control over but with one of them you have 100% control over so that is your chance to go for it!

  1. Taxes – Little control

Get a good accountant who may be able to cut some corners for you and get on with growing your business to cover your taxes.

  1. Discouraging Bureaucracy – Little control with more options

Depending on where you live, paperwork has to get done.  You can do it yourself but can save a lot of time and frustration by using one of the excellent expat services that can take care of almost anything.   On the French Riviera, I recommend LBS (Leonetti Business Services).

  1. Lack of Business Planning – 100% controlman

This is one of the main reasons why new businesses struggle.  Planning ahead is the single most effective action you can take to make your dream job work.  Statistics show that a simple plan can have an amazing impact on a small business – increasing chances of financial success by 50%.

Most creative people don’t plan out their businesses because noone has made it easy.  Therefore, most prefer to invest their energies into perfecting their product or service and develop relationships with their target market.  Sadly, very little time is dedicated to planning how the money will come in.

For expats launching a business in a foreign country, a plan is vital as many are targeting an English speaking clientele.  With a simple plan, the entrepreneur can find out what the income potential of that market is and which of his products or services will render the most profit.  Only then can he or she choose the best marketing activities.

Today with the explosion of entrepreneurship, it is easier than ever to put a simple plan in place. One ofdeb logo the programs, especially made to motivate the right brainers is called Trilojee  (see video & podcast below). For those who want extra guidance in their business growth, there are Entrepreneur Coaches to boost your business progress.  Contact info@espritentrepreneurs.com for any global location.

We want your dream business to have every chance of succeeding!

These are the businesses that are promoting Wellness, Culture, Eco living, Cuisine, education, services and creating communities of like-minded people.  These small businesses allow so many of us to experience quality of products and services and unexpected delights of living.

So go for it!  Yes – a dream job and dream income too!

I would love to hear about your businesses.  We want you to succeed as it helps all of us!

2 minute podcast about Entrepreneur earnings:

Tools for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

13 of the best hill villages near Nice

NOTE:  The “Village House for Sale” on the sidebar is located in village #7 on this list!

 

The Alpes-Maritimes department in south-east France, including the world famous Côte d’Azur, is home to several hundred medieval hill villages, fortified towns and ruined iron age camps, and many are close to Nice.  The “villages perchés” vary from little more than a pile of ruins to perfectly renovated sophisticated small towns, some are now the ancient centre of a modern town, others are gloriously isolated deep in the countryside.  Some are almost at sea level others over 1500m high in the mountains.  What they all have in common though is that they are built in strategic locations, to protect themselves from invasion, often on rocky outcrops or cliff faces; places hard to access and easy to defend. They tend to centre around a church and castle at the top with winding narrow cobbled alleyways, twisting down to the ramparts.  These lanes are sometimes covered, forming tunnels, they often turn into steps and are nearly always far too narrow for cars.  They were built for donkeys, horses and carts but nothing any bigger which makes for an interesting spectacle when a modern day resident has a large piece of furniture delivered!  (Surprisingy they are very nearly all still inhabited).

Peillon village near Nice France at sunset

I don’t suppose I’ll ever get to all the hill villages in the area, especially when you consider there are plenty more in the neighbouring Var department and across the Italian border in Liguria, but I’ve visited plenty and love discovering new ones.  Here’s my choice of the 13 best easily reached from Nice and surrounding towns (in no particular order), with a brief description.

1.  GREOLIERES

Gréolières

Gréolières (not to be confused with Gréolières les Neiges, the ski resort nearby) is a small, easily accessed hill village as it isn’t too steep.  It lies dramatically on the edge of a cliff over looking the Loup river.  The drive to it and just a bit further past towards the ski area is spectacular and one of the main reasons to go.  The village, which has a handful of restaurants, is unpretentious, existing for locals rather than the tourist market    It’s extra pretty in the snow which it regularly gets during the winter.

Gréolières in snow

 

2.  GOURDON

Gourdon

Gourdon is the real jaw dropper of the region.  It is practically carved out of the rock at 760m altitude but surprisingly within its walls it has a castle (where Queen Victoria once stayed) and a garden designed by Le Nôtre (he of Versailles fame no less).  Unfortunately the castle is no longer open to the public but a wander around the tiny village is worth it for the views alone.  Only 20 minutes from Lou Messugo I take all our visiting friends here and pose them in the same spot!  This aspect shows just how precarious its location is, over looking the Gorges du Loup.  It’s a very popular place for paragliding.

Gourdon paragliding Alpes Maritimes

 

3.  CHÂTEAUNEUF-DE-GRASSE

Châteauneuf Grasse Village

The hill village part of Châteauneuf de Grasse is hidden away from the road and easily missed despite being in quite a built up area only 4 kms from the city of Grasse.  It’s a quiet residential place where you won’t find shops or cafés, just sleepy cats lazing in the sun.  Every October it holds a festival dedicated to the humble pumpkin when the place comes alive but for the rest of the year it’s wonderfully tranquil and seemingly empty.  I’ve written in more detail about the Fête de la Courge and Châteauneuf itself previously.

Châteauneuf Grasse

 

4.  LE BAR SUR LOUP

Le Bar sur Loup distant view

Le Bar sur Loup is one of the most picturesque and perfectly formed hill villages with a castle, keep and chapel popping out the top.  You can see them in the photo above.  Despite what many websites say about the village the tourist office is no longer in the keep but has been replaced by an excellent restaurant “le Donjon”.  Le Bar sur Loup is known for its production of bitter oranges and celebrates them with a wonderfully fragrant fair every spring at la fête de l’oranger.  A must if you are in the area at the time.

Bar sur Loup staircase

 

5.  TOURRETTES SUR LOUP

Tourettes sur Loup Alpes Maritimes Côte dAzur PACA

Tourrettes sur Loup is famous for its violet production, grown for the perfume industry in Grasse and for crystallised candy and like many of these hill villages it celebrates its flowers with a festival in the spring. To get to the old part of the village from the central square (unfortunately a carpark) you pass through an archway and enter the quiet alleys, where you’ll come across charming and unusual red houses amongst the stone buildings.  For the best view of the village approach from the road from Grasse (rather than Vence).

Tourettes sur Loup street

 

6.  ST PAUL DE VENCE

St Paul de Vence Côte dAzur France

St Paul de Vence is probably the most well known of the Côte d’Azur hill villages owing to its association with some of the world’s greatest artists.  Over the years names such as Picasso, Chagall, Matisse and many more have either lived here or been inspired by it.  The town is the location for one of the best private modern art collections in the world, the Maeght Foundation, and nowadays is chock-a-block full of art galleries and studios.  It’s an art lovers paradise and it’s exquisitely beautiful.  The lanes are perfectly paved and every building is renovated and maintained to a high standard.  The downside to this is that it gets very crowded.  Take a look here for tips on how to avoid the crowds and more detail about the lovely St Paul de Vence.art galleries in St Paul de Vence

 

7.  HAUT-DE-CAGNES

Haut de Cagnes Côte dAzur France

Hauts-de-Cagnes is slap bang in the middle of the conurbation of Cagnes sur Mer-Nice, is very easily reached by public transport from all over the Côte d’Azur and yet it is relatively unknown. Being in the centre of an urban area it is hard to get a good distant photo of it, with one of the best views being from the motorway!  My shot above was taken on a gloomy day where you can just about make out the mountains behind; when you notice it peeking above the busy streets of Cagnes you realise it’s begging to be explored.  There’s a quirky fact about Haut-de-Cagnes, they play square boules “pétanque carrée” on the steep streets, the balls being square so they don’t roll downhill!

Haut de Cagnes square boules carrées

 

8.  BIOT

Biot village Alpes Maritimes France

Biot is another of the hill villages which finds itself today as the historical and tourist centre of a much bigger but otherwise rather nondescript town.  It’s small but very lively with plenty of restaurants,cafés, boutiques and art galleries.  It holds a weekly market every Tuesday morning. Biot is famous for its hand blown glass which you can see being made in a small workshop on the main street and in the biggerVerrerie de Biot just below the village on the main road to the coast.  It is also well known for its very popular annual medieval festival every April.

arcades in Biot Alpes Maritimes

 

9.  MOUGINS

mougins village near cannes in france

Mougins is located between Cannes and Grasse and rises in a spiral of streets from the plain around. Seen from above it is most unusual.  It has become known as a centre of gastronomy with many fabulous restaurants including some with Michelin stars and an annual food festival.  It is also packed full of art galleries and the home of a small but good classical art museum.  One of the most attractive aspects of Mougins village I think is the trees that grow through the restaurant terraces in the main square.

Mougins near Cannes France

 

10.  CARROS

Carros village perché Alpes Maritimes France

Carros is a surprising stunner of a hill village, one that very few visitors ever see owing to the reputation of its namesake modern town.  Modern Carros, built about 40-50 years ago is a hideous grouping of soulless apartment blocks and industrial buildings but go beyond this, a few kilometres up the hill and you’ll be well rewarded.  The views are some of my favourites of all the hill villages around, stretching up and down the Var river valley to snowy mountain peaks and the Mediterranean at Nice.  The 12th century castle at the top of the village houses a rather unlikely International Centre of Contemporary Art and there are some interesting modern sculptures juxtaposed in the ancient streets.

Carros Village sculptures

 

11.  PEILLON

Peillon village near Nice France at sunset

Peillon, as you can see from the beautiful photo above, sits in splendid isolation surrounded by forested mountains and valleys and yet it is only 12 kms north of Nice.  It is tiny, peaceful, completely pedestrian and entirely empty of tourist tat and other commercial enterprises except for an unlikely secondhand clothes shop!  At the top of the village next to the church you’ll find a panoramic map pointing out the nearby peaks and distant cities.

Peillon Côte dAzur France

 

12.  SAORGE

Saorge hill village Alpes Maritimes France

Saorge is another completely untouched, in places run down, fully authentic hill village oozing charm and character.  Looking out over the gorgeous Roya river its houses are built in about 5 layers up and up the steep mountain side meaning that the little lanes are often tunneled through the buildings.  There are bridges and secret passages everywhere, cool and calm in the summer heat.  I defy anyone not to fall in love with this gem of a perched village.

Saorge village near Nice France

 

13.  EZE

Eze village viewed from Grand Corniche

Eze village is a superstar of hill villages and along with St Paul probably the most visited in the region.  Its proximity to both Nice and Monaco make it popular with cruise ships but this don’t let this put you off, just choose your moment to visit wisely.  Its unique attraction is its botanic garden perilously hanging off the rock.  The views from Eze, particularly from the gardens, peeping through cacti and sculptures, over the warm tiled rooftops and across to St Jean Cap Ferrat are truly splendiferous!  Within the village walls you’ll find souvenir shops, cafés and an achingly beautiful 5 star hotel that mere mortals like me can only gaze upon and dream…

Eze Côte dAzur France view from jardins exotiques

 

For some 13 is unlucky so I’ve included a bonus 14th choice particularly interesting to visit at Christmas…read on…

BONUS:  LUCERAM

Lucéram model of village with Santons

Lucéram is known as the Christmas village for during the month of December it comes alive with a “Circuit des Crèches“.  Literally every tiny alley, every balcony, every doorway and every nook and cranny is decorated for Christmas with ribbons, baubles, tinsel, pine cones and santons, traditional Provencal clay figurines.  The idea is to follow the circuit of Nativity creches (or cribs) around the village spotting the hidden ones and marvelling at the bigger scenes.  The photo above is of a model of the village with santons, located in a room at the entrance to the village.  Read more about this lovely tradition here.

Lucéram Christmas village

 

My advice for visiting hill villages is to explore the back alleys, get away from the main streets and lose yourself in the myriad of twisting dark lanes.  Look out for interesting details and a sudden shaft of light. Breath in the smells of the flowers in bloom or the damp odours of hundreds of years of history.  Move away from the crowds and you’re sure to find yourself alone even in the most popular places.  If you think you can’t visit these places with kids, think again. Above all make sure you visit at least a few of these gorgeous historical places while on the French Riviera, they are such an important and lovely part of its charm.

CREDIT/SOURCE: reblogged from http://www.loumessugo.com/

Polygone Riviera – A Lifestyle Mall

Summary:

  • Cagnes-sur-Mer is the site for the first lifestyle shopping mall in France
  • 8 minutes from Nice, 20 mns. from Cannes, 10 mns. from Antibes, 5 mns. from Vence – easily accessible from A8
  • French Riviera is the #1 tourist destination for the French and #2 tourist destination for foreigners
  • The center is the first four-star shopping mall in the south of France

The mall comprises 75,000m2 to include:

  • Gastronomical dining plaza
  • Panoramic view terrace
  • Free wifi & interactive directories
  • Reception area & car parking valet
  • Luxury brand stores
  • Casino, 10-movie theater, bowling center & more….

Website HERE

PRINTEMPS & much more….

Christmas on the Côte d’Azur

REBLOGGED from blog at http://www.loumessugo.com

Christmas on the Côte d’Azur is full of fun, often full of good weather and probably a great deal more festive than you might think.

Christmas on Côte dAzur

Christmas Markets

Most towns in the area will have some form of Christmas market, perhaps with a theme, usually only for a day or two and nearly always in the month of December, not before (though there are some exceptions).  Here are some of my favourites

Aix-en-Provence:  the earliest market in the area.  It runs from 19 November – 27 December in the Cours Mirabeau consisting of regular chalet-style stalls selling everything and anything (gift based). There is also a separate market for the traditional 13 desserts of Provence on the 18-24 December in Place François Villon – Les Allées Provençales.

Christmas market Aix en Provence

Le Rouret:  another November market, this time just for one day on Sunday 29 November.  Le Rouret Christmas market is billed as “pure tradition” in the sense of past times/olden days and differs from many others in that it focuses on traditional artisanal crafts with displays of past trades and people dressed up in period costumes.  You won’t see much plastic tat here but you will find a lot of lovely produce and live farm animals for children to pet.  I’ve written about it in detail here.  My advice is to go early, it gets very crowded and parking can be a problem.

Christmas market Le Rouret

Valbonne:  one of my favourites, Valbonne Christmas market isn’t a “chalet” market, rather the streets of the old village are filled with market stalls just like every Friday morning but more of them, more christmassy and longer lasting.   To get into the Christmas spirit there’s nothing like a wander around this market followed by a drink in the square and a mosey around the seasonal show by the church, town hall and river.  Over the last couple of years this has been an incredible display of fire and lights.  This year’s programme is not out yet, but it’s sure to be good.  The market stays open in the evenings while the shows take place.  This year the festivities are from 20-24 December.

Valbonne Christmas market vin chaud

Nice:  the Christmas market is a classic affair of wooden chalets selling Christmas trinkets, jewellery, food, crafts, clothing and other gifts.  It is normally held in Place Massena where you’ll also find the Big Wheel, a children’s area of trampolines and bouncy castles, usually a merry-go-round shaped like a Christmas tree, oyster and champagne bars, vin chaud and a skating rink. (However this year due to the current security issues it will be within the gated section of the Jardin Albert 1er and I’m not sure about the children’s area, best to check online before going and I’ll update when I know).  The views from the giant ferris wheel are lovely and the atmosphere is always very festive here.  The theme this year is “traditions and folklore” and it runs from 5 December – 4 January.

Nice Christmas market

Monaco:  the Christmas market on the port usually has a food theme with plenty of chalets serving delicious seasonal and festive food from around the world.  There’s also a big wheel here along with a small fair for children and the wonderful skating rink.  The market is open from 4 December – 3 January.

Christmas market Monaco

Roquefort les Pins:  my town of Roquefort has its own festive celebration showcasing Christmas around the world at its annual “Noëls du Monde”.   A quarter of the population of the town is foreign and to honour this countryfolk from places as diverse as Poland, Peru, Holland, Haiti, Australia, Italy, Sweden, UK, Lebanon, New Zealand, South Africa and more come together to share their Christmas traditions with food, crafts and other specialities.  This year it takes place on 12 December.

Noels du Monde

Decorations & Illuminations

Lucéram:  one of the highlights of Christmas on the Riviera has got to be visiting the lovely perched village of Lucéram to see the display of hundreds of Nativity scenes (creches/cribs).  It’s so very different from regular town Christmas decorations, unique and wonderfully festive.  This year the village is decorated from 1 December – 6 January.

Lucéram Christmas village

Nice:  Nice’s Christmas illuminations are always pretty good centering on Place Massena and the water mirror/fountains in the Promenade du Paillon, the streets around Massena, Ave Jean Medecin, Place Garibaldi, the Promenade des Anglais and around Cours Saleya.  There’s always a giant Santa opposite Lenval (the children’s hospital) on the Prom for the poor kids in hospital over the festive season to look out at and several large postboxes dotted around town to send Christmas wish lists to Father Christmas.

Christmas lights in Nice Promenade du Paillon

Shows, pantomimes and carols

The Nutcracker (Casse Noisette) by l’Opéra National de Russie at l’Acropolis Nice, 10 Dec, 8pm

The Nutcracker by The Royal Ballet live cinema screening at CIV cinema 16 Dec, 8.15pm (to find out more about live CINEMA screening and to be in with a chance of winning tiickets click here). Primary school children FREE.

Troïka sur Glace, ice skating show with a Russian theme, Monaco Port, 20 Dec, 5.30pm.  FREE.

Valbonne Christmas fireworks and light show – I’m just guessing here and will update as soon as the information becomes available but usually there’s a great spectacle on the lawn between the Mairie and church every evening that the market is on.

Valbonne Christmas fire spectacle

Sleeping Beauty panto in English 1st performance 15 Dec Chateauneuf-Grasse then many more shows through December.

Carol Concert by Riviera International Singers, Antibes Cathedral  4 Dec,  7.30pm in aid of the Antibes Lifeboat, and  at Valbonne church 10 Dec 8pm + 12 Dec 6pm (Valbonne church has heated pews, this is a luxury I’d never come across before living on the Côte d’Azur!)

Big Blaze Chorus Winter Concert, Holy Trinity Church Cannes 3 Dec, 7pm

Christmas Concert by Sweet Seven, Valbonne church 6 Dec, 5pm.

carol concert in Valbonne

 Skating

Skating at outdoor pop-up rinks has become an integral part of Christmas fun in many places around the world and the Côte d’Azur is no exception.  My family love the rink at Monaco (the pool on the port is transformed into a rink for 3 months every winter). Skating to the backdrop of sailing boats and super yachts under a bright blue sky in mid-winter is an unbeatable experience!  (It’s also rarely crowded, you aren’t limited in time and you don’t have to book.)

Christmas skating rink Monaco

Patinoire à ciel ouvert Monaco Port, open every day from 4 Dec – 28 Feb except 20 Dec.

If you want to have a mountain experience, hopefully surrounded by some snow, the pop-up rink in Auronis rather lovely.  Open every day from December to the end of March (weather permitting).

Nice Place Massena, 5 Dec – 4 Jan every day from 11am – 8pm (sessions of 90 mins).

Christmas skating in Nice

 Santons

If you’re after something typically local to Provence and traditional at Christmas then do take a look at Santons.  These are clay figurines that come in many different shapes and sizes from standard Nativity scenes to more original characters from village life.  They are used to decorate houses at Christmas time and are available at most Christmas markets and at special fairs “Foire aux Santons” in a number of places.  They are highly collectable and make great gifts too.

santons of Provence foire aux santons

Here are the dates and locations of some Foires aux Santons on the Côte d’Azur and nearby.  The biggest and best is further afield in Marseille.

Mouans-Sartoux 13 Nov – 24 Dec, Mediathèque La Strada

Aix-en-Provence 29 Nov – 30 Dec, Espace Cézanne, Allées Provençales

Valbonne 13 Nov – 24 Dec, Salle paroissiale (church hall) next to St Blaise

For a very thorough programme of festivities in the Alpes-Maritimes check & pay attention to the dates as some information hasn’t been updated for 2015!

Christmas market stall

 

France News Snippets

  • Some EU lawmakers want to stop subsidizing those farmers who raise bulls for fighting.  Critics say the sport is cruel and archaic and that budget appropriations should not be used to finance a blood sport.  Animal rights campaigners welcome this attempt which seems to have a better chance of passing than when it was suggested in the past.  The interest in bullfighting has waned in recent years.
  • UNESCO listed the historic vineyards of Champagne and Burgundy as a World Heritage Site on the 4th of July.  Champagne’s rolling hills in the north of the region contain some of the most expensive agricultural land in Europe.  In Burgundy, the uniqueness of the Côtes de Nuits and the Côte de Beaune south of Dijon was noted.  The ‘Grand Crus’ from this region are some of the most expensive.  France now has 41 World Heritage sites.
  • The Musée Rodin reopened to the public on November 12 after extensive renovations.  Over 300 precious works of sculpture are on display.  The Museum is open daily from 10AM to 5:45PM, on Wednesdays until 8:45PM and is closed Mondays.
  • The Grand Palais in Paris is the venue Picasso Mania an exhibit that looks at Picasso’s career chronologically and features works from the Musée Picasso, the Musée National d’Art Moderne and the artist’s family.  Until February 29, 2016.  The museum is open daily 10AM to 10PM, and Sundays and Mondays until 8PM.  It is closed Tuesdays.
  • The wild boar population has exploded in France in recent years despite efforts by hunters.  The boars (sangliers) number over 2 million in France alone, invade suburban gardens and villages, and wreak havoc on farms.  They are the cause of over 60% of the 40,000 car accidents involving wild animals each year.  When driving in France, take notice of signs indicating deer crossings, and most especially those through wooded areas indicating wild boars.  The boar will not sustain as much damage as the car that hits him!
  • Bordeaux wine producers are ecstatic over their magnificent 2015 harvest.  This largest wine-producing region in France blends Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon to produce their world-famous blended wine.  Commenting on the dark juice and great flavor, they predict that 2015 will be a great vintage. They compare it to the vintages of 2005 and 2010, with one vigneron saying that all those years ending in 5 have been superb.  Increased yields were in other western regions of the country such as the Loire and good news for the vintners.  Weather was not as good in the Burgundy and Beaujolais regions with a heat wave that led to a sixteen percent drop in the harvest.  [credit: Agence France Presse]
  • Le Mont St-Michel was originally known as Mont Tombe and located on the now famous island in La Manche.  Christianity spread to this region around the fourth century, and by the mid-sixth century it had a strong presence in the area.  By that time, Mont Tombe was populated by religious devotees: hermits ~ probably some Celtic monks.  Benedictine monks were installed at the Abbey in 966, and today Le Mont St-Michel is the second most visited tourist attraction in France and a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • The Tour de France in 2016 will begin in le Mont St-Michel in Normandy, proceed south through the western Loire (Stage 4 from Saumur to Limoges is 232 kilometers and the longest leg of the Tour) into Aquitaine and cross the Pyrénées into Andorra ~ about the halfway mark ~ where there is a rest stop.  Riders will return to the Tarn département, go on through Languedoc and into the Vaucluse département of Provence.  From there, it’s north through the Rhône-Alpes, and the cyclists will head for Switzerland where they will have a break from the Tour in Berne.  The next three stages will be in the Alps to Mt Blanc, Albertville and Megève, then turning north to end in Morzine on July 23.  The cyclists will be flown to Chantilly, north of Paris, for their final ride on the 24th to Paris and the Champs Elysées.

Credit/Source:  franceonyourown.com news

A Beaujolais Nouveau Lunch

At midnight – No, at one past midnight on the third Thursday of November, Les Beaujolais Nouveaux sont arrives!  A recent lunch was at a small cafe/restaurant, “Mets Vins Chics,” in Eze Bord de Mer (not the village of Eze) to try out this year’s harvest – a surprising delight full or body and taste.  We enjoyed an apero and a leisurely lunch, basking under the sunshine and warm temperature, and enjoying a sea view – not bad for mid-November on the French Riviera.

Nice, After the Paris Attacks

Posted on by Best of Nice Blog

paris attacks peace signIn a state of shock after the attacks in Paris, the city of Nice has predictably doubled down on police and military presence, and cancelled all major city-sponsored events and shows over the weekend.  But even though public gatherings this weekend were strictly forbidden by the Mayor’s office, this didn’t stop at least200 people from spontaneously gathering Saturday evening at Place Garibaldi for a candle-lit homage to mourn the victims of the Paris attacks.  Unfortunately, however, they weren’t the only ones to show up, as a well-known and rather vocal group of thirty barged on the scene, singing a loud and aggressive version of the French national anthem and brandishing signs with anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant slogans like ‘France for the French’.

It is worth noting the local Muslim community’s reaction to the Paris tragedy: immediate and unanimous condemnation, responding to the senseless spilling of innocent blood by a massive turnout to donate their own blood to the local blood bank, joining other Nicois of all faiths, in a most personal show of solidarity to help the hundreds of injured.  The line at the blood bank went around the block with many waiting up to 3 hours to donate.  The influx was so overwhelming that over a 120 were asked to come back Monday.

The Mayor’s office is organizing a chain of solidarity for Paris next Sunday the 22nd November in Place Garibaldi at 2pm.

 

You are what you eat – La bonne franquette!

After three weeks without Internet connection/service, it feels good to be back in ‘blog business’!  During that time, I learned that being online all day is a (good or bad?) habit and took the down time to do other things (not a bad thing).  Just goes to show that there are pros & cons to every situation.  Now I need to get to work on new posts, so stay tuned – thanks for your readership.

 

Wow – Just look at what french students get to eat in school!

Watch video HERE:Cours Saleya flower market, Nice France