I woke up and had a quick breakfast before heading out to meet the bus at 7:30 to go to spend the day in Nice. I got some money for the day/ weekend/week out of a different machine and it was mean and have me a two fifties instead of smaller bills. Big bills here suck because no one ever wants to take them. A 20 is like already bad but a fifty is like oh man not so good to have. But I rolled with it and took note of that machine bing not so good and then went to find the buses. I had a bit of trouble finding the hotel but luckily I had left myself lots of extra time to get there so as not to be left behind. After some confusion of who was on what bus and which bus was which number we got on. My bus is for the advanced French students so all our information stuff is in French. Kelan is my bus buddy we decided for these trips. We got on the bus and though I tried to keep my eyes out the window I couldn’t help but fall asleep for part of the way. We stopped at a gas station rest stop and we all went to the bathroom and got snacks. I bought a little Starbucks frappuccino thing to tie me over for the day and break one of my fifties. Then it was back on the bus!
We passed by Nice and went instead to Eze which is a smaller town where we toured a perfume factory. Sounded like a cool idea but it was really difficult to hear our tour guide in the small space talking in French when the other groups were being loud and another tour guide was speaking English. It was difficult to keep the mind in French mode and she was being so quiet and the English lady too fuzzed to really hear anything. We got to sample some different like pure extracts like lemon, rose, strawberry (my favorite), coffee, lavender, and chocolate. That was probably the funniest part of the tour as well as seeing how they use the molds to make the soaps. The gift shop was kind of cool but everything was pretty expensive and I really didn’t care about buying perfume. We only had an hour total in Eze including the slow and mandatory perfume tour. Kelan and I ditched the gift shop in order to try and get to the town to take a few pictures. We took the way the bus lady told us but it most definitely didn’t go to town but to a little look out into the valley where you could see the Mediterranean. We took some pictures and then were sad that we had to go back. We waited around for people to be done in the gift shop and then got back on the bus to go to Nice.
On the way there our bus guide prattled on for far too long about nothing in particular and repeats herself way too many times that everyone just tuned her out. We all were also vey distracted by the beautiful city and coast out our windows. When we got off the bus we had to follow our bus guide to the meeting place in front of a statue of a naked guy who was vey nicely done but he was not nearly as exciting as the beach. The bus lady held us there for too long saying the same things she had already said before letting us leave. By that time we had about an hour to do whatever before we could meet back to go either on a walking tour of some parts of the city or up the side of the cliff called a chateau that had some ruins and waterfalls. We walked a bit before we found a place where we could buy some sandwiches that we could then take to the beach. I bought a piece of strange pizza and a slice if apple pie which was very cheap. I also ran down and bought a few postcards before the rest of the group got their food. Kelan and I quickly wolfed our food don because we both really wanted to go in be Mediterranean I swim. The other girl wanted to sunbathe so we left all oh stuff with them and then went and jumps in. The other girls complained that I was too cold but I thought it was really warm, warmer than Oregon and warmer than swimming pools that I am used to! A bunch of other IAU kids soon joined us and it was a lot of fun. The water is so blue that it is unbelievable. It is also supppper salty. I accidentally engulfed some water and thought I was going to throw up from all the salt. It is nice bought because the salt helps you float so you don’t really need to swim very much to stay above water. The shore was really pebbly but once you got in the water and couldn’t ouch bottom it was awesome. There were waves by they acted more like softly not like breaking waves in Oregon and you would float up with them which was pretty fun. I really enjoyed myself and it was a really amazing experience. I want to do it again!
Eventually I got out and we went to track down some ice cream before meeting back at the naked guy to climb the over three hundred stairs. We didn’t actually count but that number was thrown out. When I counted it was well over that but I eventually lost interest and lost track. We found an ice cream place and by the time we all got ours we had to run to meet at the guy. I got chocolate in a cone and it was super delicious. 10/10, would buy again. After meeting up we walked to the entrance and started climbing. It really is like super high up there. But the views were breath-taking!
My vocal cords gave me a bit of trouble when his creepy guy clearly checked me out when I passed him while he was on the phone and after words he stood up and started to follow me. I quickly went two stairs at a time and ran to catch up with the others who really weren’t far ahead but I wanted to be safe. But other than that they didn’t get too uncomfortable. The waterfalls were kind of cool and it was nice to get a little spray after climbing so much. We sat down near the top for a while to just take it all in before we had to go back down to leave.
Kelan and I quickly ran to the top where we found another awesome view and a really good deal of 7 postcards for 2 euros. So of course I bought some more. I haven’t actually sent any yet though… Oops. I figure they will be expensive to send. Though beside the point there were a ton of postcards with like half naked girls on the or random kittens. That was pretty bizarre. But we went back down and then went to the naked guy to meet everyone to leave. I was like super thirsty but because we had to be there at a certain time we didn’t stop. Long story short, our bus guide told us the wrong spot and time. So we met earlier than we had to and then walked to a location five minutes away to meet everyone else. But because there were multiple meeting places it was pretty much a crap shoot and no one knew what was going on. We didn’t leave until 5:15, which was very obnoxious because I was sooo thirsty.
We stopped luckily about 30 minutes down the road at a real rest sop to use the bathrooms really quickly. Kelan took my water bottle to the bathroom but then I decided to go as well and we both discovered that the sinks here were so short it was impossible to get water in the bottle. Luckily after waiting for the buses to be sure they had everyone (a 20 minute process even though only 15 people got off the three buses) the bus guide asked if anyone wanted to buy a bottle of water for a euro from the bus. This is actually. Really good price and I definitely jumped at the chance! The bus ride back was beautiful or is rather since I am writing this on the bus currently. I told Madame that I was going out for dinner tonight with friends because I only have 6 dinners a week. But the plan is to go home and de-salt with a shower first before re-meeting up.
We ended up going to the 24 hour restaurant which has a lot of seafood. Luckily they have other things as well so I ended up going for something that had chicken in it which ended up being fries and chicken baked in crumb or something? It was very good! Kelan is living with a girl from Sweden who came with us to dinner and she was really nice. I spent a lot of time talking to her because she was on the end and everyone was kind of ignoring her. She was really nice though! After dinner we went to an Irish pub for a drink and I tried a Tequila Sunrise which was pretty good. I liked the orange juice/grenadine part more than the tequila but it wasn’t too bad. A little spendy for my tastes but it was good. My ear has still been hurting so after one drink I decided to leave and Kelan and the Swedish girl seemed glad to have a reason to leave because they were getting bored, so they walked me home. Apparently there is like a new gang in Aix? Apparently? And also the other night this one girl got mugged from IAU 10 minutes from her house after the guy who was walking with her left. So they are really cracking down on us to be sure and have a buddy and not carry a lot of important stuff on us at night and to take taxi’s even if we live close. I live five minutes from that bar so it wasn’t a long ways for them to walk me home, and the street I walk takes a little bit longer but is much more populated.
I feel like this doesn’t like accurately depict how crazy and cool my day was but I had a pretty great day. I am really glad that I got to go on this trip.