So I’m bypassing the story of a lovely, lovely time had with friends in the South of France, Lagnes to be exact (Avignon is the closest city). I could write all about how divine it was to be there and how special it was to meet my very good friend after what seems like a lifetime of travel and living overseas; and how lovely it was to get to hang out with her for 5 days travelling with crazy singing GPS lady who took us down the weirdest of small dirt roads rather than highways; or I could tell you about all the local organic wine we drank (nothing compared to our 20s, that’s for sure); or how we walked around the most beautiful, picturesque towns by a river that was too cold to swim in despite being nearly 40°C; or how we ate the most delicious and nutritious local low carb high fat food; or how we would get up after the sun had come up and lay by the pool, sometimes for the whole day….
I could…but I won’t, I’ll leave it there and show you a few pics instead. (Sorry for the mobile phone quality!)
Here is my time in Lagnes/Avignon – South of France
Next on the list is Monaco…here is a little piece of my time there… just so you know, I stayed keto because it’s so easy to do so anywhere, but especially in Europe (as you can see in the photos).
I hope you enjoy my observations below…
MONACO, MONTE CARLO – A wealthy and beautiful seaside city, that is soooo surreal to visit…
Well well, what a great little city Monaco is. It should be no surprise really but I had honestly rarely considered the South of France as a holiday destination. I’m not sure why as now I’ve been once, I will most definitely go back again. It is stunning.
As I was travelling around alone, I was continually struck by how awesome things were, what a beautiful place it was, and how different life could be growing up and living in a place such as Monaco (I have a friend who grew up here so I was trying to relate to what she experienced every day).
Some random thoughts continued to pop up for me so I decided to document them and post them. So here, below, are my comments on Monaco:
- Stunning. The magnetism is evident, I can see why one would want to live here or holiday here on a regular basis.
- Full of beauty: everywhere.
- Ridiculously clean…like probably the cleanest place I’ve ever seen…yet I did see a woman throw her cigarette on the road before entering Prada. I’m guessing someone’s on that pretty quick smart, that you would not likely see that butt there the next day.
- Very wealthy: the place to be seen if you have money…and a boat.
- Not as snobby as I thought, I feel like people turn their nose up at me more in boutique stores in Melbourne!
- A place where you go with your lover? Everyone thought that my second party was coming…does no one go to Monaco alone?!
- A place where pedestrians come first. Seriously. Cars would come to a screeching stop for you to cross the road. A ridiculous idea. (FYI – don’t try that in China)
- A place where the second language is Italian, not English. (I loved this and as a result, started switching which is so weird for me as English is usually the go-to language when one doesn’t speak the native tongue).
- A place to go if you love boats. They are amazing.
- A place where men wear polo shirts a lot (usually with what looks like their company name/logo on it).
- A place where the sun shines endlessly (in the summer…or am I just lucky…although I suspect this is a south of Europe thing).
- A place where the sea sparkles like diamonds…actually there are probably real diamonds in it that make it sparkle!!
- Full of dogs but no dog shit…like anywhere.
- A place where dogs also have right of way. They are allowed everywhere…inside shopping centers, supermarkets, shopping in Zara, it’s just fine.
- A place where women dress waaaayyyy better than the men…oh wait…that’s probably everywhere…but it’s just really noticeable here. And don’t get me wrong, the guys dress well, just not as fancy.
- A place where you need to dress up…I didn’t dress up enough for the casino experience…how does one wear pants in this heat?!
- A place where the water sparkles and the beaches looks like they’ve had a manicure (even though the beaches are stones, not sand – Australia still has some of the best in this regard).
- A place where people actually wear stripes…and the French colours of red, white and blue.
- A place where tourists can be seen a mile away…myself included…not just because of the map or constant taking of photos…it’s a dress sense thing; the French dress immaculately.
- A place where even the bad coffee is good.
- A place where money can disappear very quickly.
- A place where you can still find Aussies everywhere…they’re just the less rowdy ones.
- A place where you can still find the Chinese everywhere…they are just in smaller groups but still groups nonetheless…and they are all still scared of the sun.
- A place where the “healthy and lean” options are still the ones that I believe are not the ones that keep you healthy and lean…ha ha…like fruit and toast and low-fat yoghurt and muesli.
- That said, it is a place where women have very little body fat and very, very tanned skin without yet looking leathery.
- A place where It’s really hard to take photos of buildings because they are soooo big and you cannot back up enough to capture the full thing.
- A place to where I wish I’d brought my selfie stick.
- A place where I have seen plenty of expensive vehicles. (As I write this, I am stopped in the shade and in front of me is a Maserati, a Porsche and a Mercedes. I’m sure the fourth empty spot will have a Ferrari or a Bentley in it soon.
- Oh wait…a place where I saw a Toyota…OMG!
- A place where they have the smallest cars ever…like smaller than Smart cars!
- Full of colourful, breath-taking gardens…and gorgeous flowers, like everywhere!
- Where babies advertise jewelry…see my pic.
- Where wi-fi access is poor…but that may just be a Europe thing but seriously Monaco, you should catch up. How dare you try to charge me for your free wi-fi access?!
- A place where….the boy will love this one…onesies are everywhere! (he can’t stand onesies!)
- A place where fashion is revived?? Strap-less tops/boob tubes are back??!
- A classy place…with a surprisingly high amount of diamantes! (Ew!)
- A place where if a fire were to occur at the docks, billions could be lost…
- A place where most people love the opportunity to pull a celebrity pose when on the red carpet/photo spot in the casino.
- A place where there are these weird tour groups for the rich?? Either way, these people are dressed to the nines (in this heat – I couldn’t do it!)
- A place where the sun does always shine and I’m sometimes happy for it to not…I’ve had A LOT of sun these past few weeks but walking up the hills here, I am happy when the sun goes behind a cloud…
- A place where anything can be made “cool” here. I’m watching a DJs play at a fancy ice cream booth!
- A place where you are supposed to cross at the pedestrian crossings…I was the only one breaking the law here!
- A place where the seagulls are huge. If I were a bird, MC might just be the place I decide to live.
- A place where the artwork is lovely. A little random but often quite romantic-looking. Often made of bronze…
- A place where the fashion can be intimidating…where are the normal – read affordable – fashion stores?! I’m thinking of a famous monologue from ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ right now… do you know the one?!
- The place where I decided that Dior is my favorite brand of sunglasses.
- A place where they have the most grindable handrails ever…but you can’t skateboard!!
- A place that is surprisingly easy to navigate (for all the hills and windy roads).
- A place that feels almost as crowded with high rises as Shanghai.
- A place that feels really safe but there is a little too much wolf whistling for my liking…
- A place that, given the size, it seems like there’s a pretty good art scene: theatre, comedy, music etc.
- A place that given the opportunity, I will happily return to.
Love (and healthy fats) Bianca x