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When I started my retirement travels - the first of which was my solo overseas trip to Italy in 2009 - I wanted a way to share it with family and friends as it happened. Hence, "My Travel Journal". However I realized I wouldn't always be on a trip and wondered what to do with the blog in between times. My daughter pointed out, wisely, that travels can also include trips to the kitchen to try a new recipe, trips to visit family, trips to my neighborhood Starbucks, or a fun day trip with a friend. You're welcome to join me on any of these journeys!

P.S. I've set up separate pages for each of my major trips (see tabs above).

I recently added an "Italian Word a Day" thingie which shows up at the bottom of every page. You see the word and can click to hear it pronounced. I've been enjoying it and I think my accent is improving as time goes by.

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May 15, 2012

Eze, what can I say?

Wow!  I have had an absolutely glorious day!!  Today was the day to go to Eze and as mentioned before, I had scoped out the bus stop the day before and had decided that this time there was going to be no problem, darn it.  I got up earlier than usual (finally gave up cause I was wearing myself out dreaming!), did what little there was to do on the computer, had quite a nice little visit with Chantal and then got myself out in time that I could have a little treat for breakfast before the bus was due to arrive.  Stopped in a little patisserie that I hadn't tried and had an absolutely scrumptious pain du chocolat.  Had one yesterday afternoon too but this one was miles better - still warm for one thing,  And a nice cup of tea with that and then hotfooted it over to the bus stop.  And pretty soon here came bus #82 - just the number I was waiting for and I think I was feeling so chuffed that when I got on, before I paid, I said "bonjour, s/i/p, Eze?" and the bus driver somewhat resignedly but courteously said "oui"!!!!!!  He didn't seem to have any problem not being nasty and I just wanted to shake his hand.  But I acted like this is how it always went for me, said merci, validated my ticket in the little thingie and sat down.  And didn't get off until we got to the end of the line in Eze.  Success at last!  And coming back, same story.  I even made the decision not to get on the #112 bus that crowd of people got on which does go to Nice, but I had faith in my belief that #82 would come next and it did.  So, yippee!

And, well, what can I say about Eze except that I truly did not want to leave.  I lingered and lingered.  And I now join the ranks of everyone who says "oh, if you're going to be in Nice/Cannes/Monaco/wherever, you have to go to Eze" because you do.  Oh, and it's pronounced "ez"

As you'll see from some of the pictures it was another absolutely perfect, stunningly gorgeous day - never got out of the 60's - breezy.  Beautiful.  Unfortunately for a lot of the pictures, I didn't discover until about the last one I took that I had my camera set for cloudy/shady days.  I have a very hard time remembering to always check my settings.  But also, I think the sun was so bright and everywhere, that a lot of the time the sky would have had no color no matter what the setting.  I remember I had that problem in Italy, also.  But in some you will see that it was very blue.  And I promise I won't have too much to say about them. And again, I want you to know I started with 94(!) and diligently weeded some out. So...


One word of explanation, there is lower Eze and Eze village which is most of the way up to the top.  The bus goes to Eze village and then you climb the remainder.  My next trip I think will be to the desert - it IS flat, isn't it?  So here's where I've walked up to the first bend in the road.
And this picture and the picture (below) of the path referred to in sign are mostly for January's benefit. :)

And looking up from the point of the first picture to the next bend in the road...


More miniatures...

The white dot is a boat sailboat

Going up some more

As you get to the top you get to their Garden Exotica or some such name and it is just fantastic.  All kinds of plants.

 Somewhere in this one is the road we came in on...
 And again the road, plus way up at the top what looks like a really huge estate.
 The fat peninsula is Cap Ferrat.  W. Somerset Maugham lived there for many years during and after World War II.  I mention that because I love his short stories.  He was kind of an exotic specimen though and I think a bit of a tyrant.  When googling to make sure I was right in thinking this is where he lived I found this quote from a letter he wrote to his nephew describing Cap Ferrat:  "the escape hatch from Monaco for those burdened with taste."  In that same Wiki article I read that in 2012 Cap Ferrat was rated the second most expensive place in the world to live, after Monaco.  So I guess when I convince the rest of my family that we need to buy a place somewhere in Europe that we can all share, it won't be Cap Ferrat. (tee hee)
 Nifty flora and human fauna
 That wall up above with the people is the very, very top.

One of my favorite pictures - it's so full!

This is a picture looking down at the lower Eze village which is on the sea.

 The curvy white space on the right is a kind of deck with wooden chaises for "contemplation".  I just contemplated from every place I stood.
And this little cutie found the only puddle anywhere in the vicinity and was totally enthralled by it.  I think they were German but she kept saying something like "tot, tot" and very lightly tapping her feet - not enough to splash.  She finally stepped out of it and walked a bit away, but then had to go back and study it some more.  Below, a little later she chomps down an apple slice to prepare for the descent.

I didn't do too well on most of the plant pictures - cutting off tops and such.  But I'm going to blame it mostly on a point and shoot camera in bright sunshine.  Most of the time I simply can't see what's going to be in the picture and just have to hope for the best.

 Finally forced myself to start down...
This is a garden outside the church that is called "the Eglise" and I'm not sure why it is.  I think one of the signs in my sign category might tell more about it and maybe it has another real name that I'm not remembering.  A lovely garden and the memorial is a war memorial for Eze men killed in the war.  The inside of the church is sort of in an advanced state of decay it looked like to me (although it looks nice in the picture below) but it also looked like it still might be in use.

 Now, it's sad to have to go up a little to keep going down...

There is what I'm sure is an insanely expensive hotel part way up to the top that seems to spread all over and I believe this must be its gardens.  I thought the statuary was delightful.  There's elephants...

 Reindeer and in the pool, some dolphins...
 And last, but certainly not least, a couple of giraffes.

And, back on the bus, looking back to where I've been...

SECOND CATEGORY - MORE VIEWS WITH EXPLANATORY SIGNAGE (meaning I took pictures of their wonderful, in English, signs) And it's a lot fewer pictures!

 I read about the penitents in one of my books.  There were I think 5 different groups, each one providing a different charitable service and each group wearing a different color robe from the other groups, hence the names.  The picture below is of the chapel, very small and simple but appealing for that reason.

 I read about the penitents in one of my books.  There were I think 5 different groups, each one providing a different charitable service and each group wearing a different color robe from the other groups, hence the names. 
And here's the picture of the bell tower and below is a picture of the chapel, very small and simple but appealing for that reason.
The info above, the photo below...all kinds of rich people have lived there.

And I guess I posted pictures of the seaside Eze above but here's some information on it that unfortunately I didn't get completely in the picture.  But like I said, I could see what was on the screen most of the time.

This is talking about the gardens with which you are now quite familiar! :)

 I knew the church had an official name - see?  that's why I take pictures of the signs (and cut off some of the words!)  Not a good picture of the church at all, but you take what you can get.
And the picture of the interior is up in the views category, but look who I found when I was in there...
It's St. Rita!  Remember her?  The patron saint of desperate causes...don't know why she's in a church named Notre Dame which is Mary.

I forget how I managed to figure out that the picture below is what this sign is talking about but I did.  And I thought the info was quite interesting since it comes all the way up to WWII.

This one is missing the first one or two words on the left side, but you can kind of fill in. :)
The ruins they talk about here are of course that very top part with a portion of the wall.


 I didn't count how many ladies were scattered through the gardens, but there were a lot of them.  Below are the pictures I took.

And I am staying up way too late with all these pictures.  I can't seem to do less though.  I even weeded out a fair amount of view and signs ones as I was posting and there's still a ton of them.  So, if you're still with me, you deserve a real pat on the back and I hope you enjoyed them.  Until next time...

Au revoir!


Christopher said...

I can "ezely" see how Eze is a must-see... what a beautiful view from that incredible perch! And such neat buildings and gardens... And that woodcarver guy... And the lawn ornaments everywhere...
I hope you soak up all this sun just in case Paris is grey and chilly... (though Paris in the rain, of course... sigh.)
It sure all just looks amazingly beautiful in your images! (I really like the background blur you achieved on that pink-flower shot, by the way!) Very beautiful countryside! Don't forget your sunblock!

Diane Adams said...

What a gorgeous place!!! And yes the desert is flat -- mostly that is. There are places that aren't.

Jamie said...

I can't believe you can still walk! You must have taken really comfy shoes. The views are awesome. I love the plants and the little church. And hurray for you for successfully navigating the bus system! Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings! Be safe. Lov ya

SaraH said...

Yea! Made it to Eze:) I'm so glad and glad it was a good experience. I've been there and I learned a lot from reading your blog. I didn't have as long to linger as you did.
I LOVE the Earth Goddesses in the Garden of Eze. Thanks for those photos!

rosanna said...

Oh, you are again so close !
Eze is only 2 hours drive from Genoa !
I totally agree that Eze is a must see, totally beautiful and this is the best season along with Fall, to go. In Summer it's unpleseantly hot and walking up can be a nightmare.
I amglad that you are enjoying your tour :o)
Keep having fun, Rosanna

Elga said...

Wonderful photos, you sure are making my feet itch to go to such beautiful places! Glad you got the right bus.

Going to the dentist is not my favorite thing to do in RL, I sure don't want to in mini ;-)

See you very soon now! At least Amsterdam has no hills.

Elga said...

Thanks for taking away the word verification, I hate figuring them out :-)

Mary Lynne said...

Thanks so much for all the comments! That's what I love about blogging a trip when I'm traveling alone - I show and tell about what I'm seeing/doing and with the comments I get back, it's like having people with me. :)

Chris - glad Eze gave you a chance for a good pun!

And, Rosanna - believe me, I tried and tried to figure an inexpensive and quick way to get myself into Italy and gave serious consideration to knocking on your door. :) I thought about going to that town right on the border (Ventimiglia?) but that seems kind of silly. Another time, I hope.

January said...

What a hike!! And so, so gorgeous. I had no idea that there was an officially marked path of Nietzsche's in France - he's always yammering on about Switzerland, I figured they'd all be there. But now I know a place I must visit and walk! The gardens really are something else, too. I'm so glad that the weather has been superb for your trip so far!

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