Archive | September, 2011

On the road

8 Sep

Somehow, it is already September. For Chris, this means all-Dolphins-all-the-time, but this also means we are moving back to the States at the end of this month.  The reality of this has yet to sink in, but we couldn’t leave France without doing a bit more traveling. For the past two weeks Roscoe, Chris and I went on a seriously awesome road trip. We started off traveling through Bourgogne wine country with a stop in Solutre-Pouilly; a teeny, tiny town famous for its Chardonnay grapes. We didn’t know what to expect with respect to wine tasting in France, but we discovered quickly that almost every resident of this town makes wine and has a wine cave in their basement. As you walk up their driveways they invite you into their private caves to taste different years of the Pouilly-Fuisse wine made from their grapes. We visited a few, and even Roscoe got to come along on a wine cave tour with us. Although our amateur pictures turned out good, they simply don’t do this town justice. Looking out our hotel window, it seriously looked like a backdrop for a movie. Stunning.

Our next stop took us down to the French Riviera to visit some old friends at their summer house in Sainte Maxime, a laid-back beach town close to Saint Tropez. The sweltering temperatures allowed Roscoe to take his first bath in the Mediterranean, and we were spoiled with BBQ and paella by our gracious hosts.  Chris wasn’t so gracious as he dominated the Frenchmen in petanque (bocce). (Editors note: Chris just hijacked my post and inserted the previous sentence.)

Once more, we packed up the car and headed just across the border to Diano Marina, Italy. The Hahn boys, and their respective fiances, welcomed us at their amazing family property in the hills of the Italian Riviera. We soaked up the sun on the beach, indulged in italian cuisine, visited the local market and a few neighboring towns, and sailed the Mediterranean. This trip was extra special given our amazing hosts Alex and Peter whose family has spent summers in this town for many, many years. We had the insider’s tour of the best restaurants, bars, bakeries, and beach spots, where we were greeted by the locals with open arms. This was my first trip to Italy, and I left enchanted and wanting to go back the minute we said goodbye.  

The final stop on our tour was beautiful Cannes where we enjoyed a visit with Chris’ grandmother along the Croisette.  This part of the French Riviera is all glitz and glamour, as evidenced by the number of Lamborghinis and Ferraris, high-end boutiques, and 300 euro daily beach bed rentals.  Needless to say, we stuck to the public beach and maybe a cheap lounge chair rental. 

As we drove back into Paris, we realized how lucky we all were to have spent the last two weeks traveling across the coasts of France and Italy visiting friends and family. It’s taken us a good 48 hours to adjust to the grey skies, the hustle and bustle of the big city, and the oh so kind Parisian attitudes, but we do plan to take full advantage of the last 3 weeks in Paris.