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Party Time on the Cote d'Azure

sunny 24 °C

An advantage of having family in exotic places like the French Riviera is that we get dragged along to great parties and fun events, so how could we refuse an invite to Roland's 60th. birthday...
Here's a couple of real characters getting into the swing of things...
And here's a couple of characters from Vancouver who we bumped into quite by coincidence. We knew that Tad and Michiko were somewhere in France, but were amazed when we bumped into them in the middle of Antibes...
We're getting ready to leave the Cote d'Azure, and not a moment too soon. Although it's beautifully warm and sunny today there's a black cloud on the horizon - the G20 meets in Cannes in a few days and the whole city is being shut down by 12,000 machine-gun toting gendarmes. We're leaving in the nick of time - but that's been the story of our trip. We barely scraped by a devastating storm in Turkey and slipped off to Italy just before the earthquake, and while the Romans were rioting at the Colosseum we were visiting the Pontiff across the city at St. Peter's. Another storm clobbered Rome just after we left for Perugia, (where we were fortunate not to die of a chocolate overdose) and we had then planned to stay in one of our favourite seaside spots - Monterosso, one of the five picturesque villages of the Cinque Terra. Unfortunately, (or fortunately as it transpired), Cinque Terra has been featured on so many TV programs and travelogues that everyone and his brother got there before us and the local hoteliers and peasants are all driving Maseratis and washing down their caviar pizzas with champagne on the profits.We are not in the champagne clique and couldn't afford to rent a broom cupboard for a few nights in Monterosso, so moved along the coast to Rapallo before travelling to Cannes. But we do like a drop of bubbly and we really enjoyed this Italian Prosecco that we bought in Cannes..
It's not a typo. This Prosecco was just 99 cents a bottle - $1.39 Canadian dollars for a bottle of very respectable bubbly (and regular plonk can be even cheaper). And as for the Maserati? - here's Sheila at the wheel of Roland's racing car - 0-60 mph fast enough to rip your pants off...
But, back to Monterosso. Three days after we left Italy, seven people were killed and Monterosso and most of the other ancient villages of the Cinque Terra were almost totally destroyed by landslides when twenty inches of rain fell in just 24 hours. We're now off to Milan, and if there's riots in Cannes in the next few days we hope we won't get the blame.

Posted by Hawkson 05:44 Archived in France

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Fire it up, Sheila! You've got the perfect racing grip on the steering wheel. A Formula One natural.

by R and B

Okay now I know you've got your guardian angels with you.

by Janet

Go Sheila! You'll be on a motorcycle before you know it.

by Sandra

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