Home > Everyday Life > Who Blows It Up Better . . . Nice? Canne? or Philadelphia?

Who Blows It Up Better . . . Nice? Canne? or Philadelphia?

Here I am sitting in a hotel room in St. Joseph, Missouri and I am finally back on the Internet to write about Bastille Day. Right now, Drury Inn is my friend with free wi-fi and not even having a password to log into it.

So how did my first Bastille Day go?  Well the night before the Expat MeetUp group planned a Happy Hour at our same spot with the nice panoramic view of the city and the sea.  Unfortunately the bar officially stopped the Happy Hour specials and tried this DJ night instead.  So drinks were back at their regular expensive prices and the staff became very unaccommodating.  Nonetheless, we took over some tables and still had a good time with a bottle of rosé to compliment the summer heat.

Notice the white parked van and the dark object to the right

Notice the white parked van and the dark object to the right

Afterwards, the host of the group invited some of us over to her place by the port.  A few of us still had not eaten a formal dinner and the host offered to quickly make some pasta at her flat instead of trying to find a restaurant.  We had wonderful evening just chatting away and drinking even more wine.  There was of course the entertainment in the streets of Nice outside of her apartment.  After witnessing a car and motorcycle accident (unfortunately all too common in France), I saw how these recycling trucks work and was mesmerized.  Definitely click the picture to the right for a full view of the event. In France there are these huge containers throughout the city.  They are either labeled green (for glass) or blue (for paper and magazines) for recycling purposes.  So it is a common site to see the French drag out their little carts on the way to the supermarket and deposit their recycling at these huge containers.  Well tonight the recycling

Recycling Truck with Crane

Recycling Truck with Crane

truck came along in the late night (like 2 in the morning) and quickly extended this huge crane with claws.  The truck stopped in the middle of the street next to the container.  Notice that there is a parked van in between the truck and the container.  The crane successfully reached over the van and clamped the container and brought up and over back to the truck where the operator some how banged the container in a certain way to release all the contents.  Then swung the container back to the sidewalk without hitting the parked van.  It was a brilliant execution.  The whole thing happened in minutes before the truck drove off to find another container.  Here I have to give props to good French design.  On the other hand, I know to never park near these containers.  I am sure these operators may slip once and a while and hit an occasional parked car.   It happens. 😉

Coastline at Eze

Coastline at Eze

The next day I spent it with a new friend at a nice beach further east outside a village called Eze.  Again, this beach is on the road to Monaco.  I really have to say I enjoy these beaches.  In spite they are stony beaches and not sand, they are at the base of these huge cliffs.  Plus they are small beaches so there are not a lot of people because there is not the room.  Consequently only the natives go here.  You do not have the amenities at the more popular beaches so you have to remember to bring everything you need including food and water.  It was such a beautiful and calm day taking in the sun and going in for an occasional swim – and no jellyfish to be seen!

After a full afternoon at the beach, I headed home to complete some domestic activities.  This

Waves crashing in at Eze

Waves crashing in at Eze

holiday landed in the middle of the week and I had to return to work the next morning.  I was going to watch the fireworks from my terrace but my friend convinced me to join him and his friends in the Vieux Nice (old city).  I took my velo bleu (rent-a-bike) and headed down to meet up with them.  The promenade was packed with people and police closed it off to be pedestrian only for the night.  I do have to say the fireworks were alright.  I have to commend Philadelphia for its efforts at fireworks.  Nice’s display seemed a bit disorganized and didn’t have music to go along with it whereas Philadelphia’s has always been on-point.  The real fireworks, I heard are in Canne.  Canne actually host a fireworks competition all summer long.  Each display is presented by another European country and by the end of the summer a winner is announced.  The winner gets to present at the following year’s Bastille Day.  This year’s dispaly on July 14th was by Austria, the 2009 winner.  Just before I left to come to the States, Czech Republic was presenting their display.  I hope to make it to one of these competitions before the summer is out.

Half-way through my trip State side, heading back home to Nice on Monday.

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Categories: Everyday Life
  1. Andrew Keenan
    6 August 2010 at 2:22 pm

    Salut

    What is new? I haven’t gotten an up date in a while. Not much to report at this end. I’m at the shore this weekend.

    Reply when you can.

    Andrew

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