A Travellerspoint blog

August 2011

Snacking and Strolling Through Nice

Shawn is on a quest to find the perfect French pastry. His method, however, is flawed. He keeps going in to bakeries, looking at the choices, and leaving. He says he will know it when he sees it. Today Baylie & I decided on a different strategy; we will know it when we TASTE it. So now we buy one and all sample. It's working out quite well!
We do have a new food related rule: Shawn is not allowed to choose cheese. Cheese & crackers are a major staple for us, but the grocery stores haven't had much we recognize. In fact crackers have been completely nonexistent in both Spain & France. We have had to make due with little crusty/crunchy pieces of bread. Anyway, Shawn was in charge of cheese. He says he didn't notice the goat on the picture. The runny, sort of slimy goo was not good.
Baylie noticed today that the long, skinny baguette of French bread in its little half wrapper is quite the fashion accessory. She was happy to carry one around like everyone else as we strolled through town.2011-08-31_08-00-31_434

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Posted by Pelham Family 08:02 Archived in France Comments (8)

Aaahh the French Riviera!

Now that's what I'm talking about!

We have had all kinds of luck today. We had no idea what time the bus would run to take us to the train, but we got to the stop as it was arriving. The next one would not have come for over an hour. We had no idea what time the train would leave for Nice, but when I bought the tickets it turns out we barely made it. We raced to the platform and pulled away. I had been emailing with a guy about an apartment we saw listed on Craigslist and he was waiting for us when we arrived. This place is GORGEOUS!! A beautiful apartment, modern building with antique furnishings, right on the beach. Stunning view...I am in love! I will definitely need to remember this good fortune when we have a day where everything goes wrong! Now off to the market so we can eat dinner on our terrace as we look at this amazing blue water.2011-08-30_06-21-41_299

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Posted by Pelham Family 06:41 Archived in France Comments (6)

Thank you to some new friends!

We meant to stay in Montpellier as a stop-over on our way to Nice, but as it turned out our hotel is in a suburb a LONG way from town. Shawn was up for some hiking so he set off this morning, but Baylie is fighting a little cold and wanted to nap & sit by the pool. At the pool we met the nicest group of people! They live near Paris and are on their way to Barcelona. Since they had a car they weren't trapped out here at the hotel and they invited us along for a meal in town. What a fun afternoon! Thank you so much for letting a couple of Americans tag along and for helping us with the menu! We never would have seen that great little beach town without you and the boat jousting competition was the perfect ending! Enjoy Barcelona :)

Posted by Pelham Family 11:49 Archived in France Comments (2)

Oh Sophia, we barely knew you...

Baylie is a shopper. She loves gift shops, swap meets, cool little boutiques, and all manner of markets. We have had a discussion multiple times about the nature of this trip and the unchanging reality that our bags are SMALL! We agreed repeatedly that our keepsakes would have to be memories, photos, and journal entries. Shipping things home sounds good in theory, but the cost and hassle just make it unrealistic. So our last evening in Barcelona we were strolling past a swap meet type market and she became fixated on this little mirror covered in "jewels". It looked very "Spain-y" and oh-so-Baylie. I repeated my speech about our limited space and how even the little things add up. As we crossed the bridge back to our neighborhood she finally wore me down. I gave her the money and told her I would wait on the bridge. Off she ran. Ten minutes later she reappeared with a look of panic on her face. Before I could even see her clearly through the crowd she was saying "I'm so sorry! I don't know what happened!" She kept babbling about how she just asked a price and before she knew what happened she had somehow bought this BEAUTIFUL doll!! This was no Barbie, this antique looking, porcelain faced doll would fit right in with Baylie's growing collection. Where it would NOT fit is in our luggage. There were tears in her eyes, but my practical little girl understood we had to fix this and take Sophia back (yes, she got a name during her trip across the bridge). Back we went to the nice old man and explained that her suitcase was too small and she couldn't keep the doll. He was very understanding and gave her the money back, which she promptly took to the next stall and bought the mirror. As we walked back across the bridge she observed that souvenirs are better when they have a story, and the mirror now has more of a story.

Posted by Pelham Family 08:35 Archived in Spain Comments (7)

Observations of Spain

It's our final day in Spain. We're finishing up our sightseeing with history & culture at the Picasso museum. Then we learned a very important historical lesson at the chocolate museum (the tickets were actually chocolate bars!) We're now strolling through Citadel Park and feel we need to make a couple of observations...1st, they hate ice in Spain. You are lucky to get 2 cubes in your drink. Drinks are small, there are no refills, and I have been thirsty since we got here. 2nd, they have not discovered pizza cutters. I know we shouldn't be talking about pizza in Spain, but we have had it twice at different places and both times we got a whole pizza and a butter knife and fork. What did they intend for us to do? I'm sure we didn't do it right, but we managed. I think I could have made a fortune if I had brought a couple of rolling pizza cutters! 3rd, We are all developing a great appreciation for the non-smoking rules in California. Second hand European smoke is killing us! And finally, Shawn would like to see a world-wide ban of the Speedo swimsuit for men. Adios.

Posted by Pelham Family 04:23 Comments (7)

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