Daily Archives: September 3, 2012

Day 52: Rest day in Cannes

I woke up in time for breakfast this time. It was so nice to wake up in an air-conditioned room in a comfortable bed (and having a toilet and shower). It is amazing how you appreciate really simple things:

  • No bugs! (although one small sandfly did attempt to bite me just before it went to sandfly heaven)
  • A bed that is bigger than your body
  • Being able to stand up while you get dressed!
  • A bathroom with soap, toilet paper and privacy!

So after breakfast it was time to take the post box to the post office – I had my fingers crossed that it would be open and not have any strange rules like no boxes on Tuesdays! Luckily I managed to get the post box sent off – we are not allowed to have anything on the tour that does not fit in either our permanent or day bay. The box was taking up a third of my day bag, so it’s good to have that space back!

Then it was time to do the laundry, yay we could leave stuff there, and they washed and dried it for us, we just had to return to pick it up in two hours. We looked around the markets, bought lunch and sent some postcards.

The markets in Cannes

Cheeseshop in Cannes

We saw a number of beggars sitting with a cup in front of them on the sidewalk by the laundry and market. I guess if they tried to sit on the beach front they would be moved on. There were a few street performers, as well one was a man with a cat and dog, they were curled up asleep together. The cat looked just like our cat Boss apart from it had only one black ear. I did not get a photo as my camera was in the hotel but I did take a picture of another pair heading out to their daily spot.

Street performers on their way to beg

There was also a metallic man that stood really still until you put money into his jar, then he moved.

After we picked up the laundry we had the option of sightseeing or going to the beach. We headed to the beach for the afternoon. We went to a pay section, there are small public sections of the beach in Cannes, but they are small and crowded. The rest are owned privately – mostly by the hotels, unfortunately the Ibis where we are staying is not flash enough to have its own beach space. By sheer luck we went to a spot that you did not have to be a hotel guest, for the price of 15 euro we got 2 chairs and an umbrella. If you didn’t pay for the umbrella they took it down. We spent a very nice lazy afternoon there swimming and dozing. The sea was so warm.

I went back to the hotel as I had arranged to have dinner with Dan and Brett at 6:30. We wanted to go to the pizza place right by the hotel but when we went in there the staff were all eating. They told us to come back at 7pm. We went and had a drink just down the road, and when we got back to the restaurant at about 7:05pm it was already packed. The pizza was nice, but I could not finish it.

Then it was time to pack and an early night ready for an early start in the morning.

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Day 51: Imperia to Cannes – 132k

4,119km down: 2,106km to go (2/3 of the way there!)

Another early start, we had a 130k to cycle, but it turned out to be 132k – I only mention it because the day was hard – 10 hours on the road and by 130k I was ready to give it up. One of the riders clearly felt worse as they gave it up in Nice and caught a train the rest of the way! There was no lunch truck as nowhere to park so we had taken a packed lunch, so he did not have the usual option of catching the lunch truck.

We travelled along the Ligurian coast (also known as the Italian Riveria) until we crossed into France, it is very very beautiful, I would not mind coming back here.

To start off with we were on SS1, after about 35k we stopped for coffee and a pastry, and spoke to a young lady (Luciana) from the flower shop next door. Luciana was really interested to hear about our bike trip and hopes one day to do one. We had another day of really pretty towns but of course now that it’s Monday, all of a sudden we were in rush hour traffic. One of the riders Scott said it was like being in a pin ball game and it was cars, scooters, walkers etc everywhere, it was crazy, mad traffic.

We crossed the border into France after 57k, and immediately the architecture changed and of course the signs as well.

Me and Brett at the border into France

We were on a mixture of the A8, D37, D35, D6908. We climbed quite a lot – over a 1,000 metres over the day, looking at the bays and yachts and the launches – millions of dollars in boats!

On the way to Cannes – a couple of dollars in boats


We had the option to take a small detour into Monaco, which seeming as it is another country we decided to take. We went 1k in and had lunch at a museum. However as we had not bought lunch at the museum we were not particularly welcome. First off we all got asked to stand up, and then we were asked to move completely from the property. We had taken a packed lunch of Vegemite and cheese buns (one of the riders had left his stash of Vegemite when he left in Venice so of course Brett and I swooped on it), I’m not sure our black toothed smiles covered in Vegemite helped the situation.


Anyway at least we can say we had lunch in Monaco. After Monaco the next large town was Nice, and we were back into the pinball machine game again, thankfully we went through the outskirts and only spent about 10 minutes in the traffic. Amazing, there was a bike path that lasted about 22k.

In Nice, wearing the shirt that Chris and Dave gave me

The day was hilly and hot and seemed to go on and on. Just before Cannes there was a lovely little town, we thought it was Cannes until we kept riding and didn’t see any orange flags, and then to my horror we were out of town and climbing a hill again. Thankfully it was not much further and we came into Cannes, which was certainly nothing like the small town we had just left.

I got to the hotel and unpacked, it was too late for the laundry so it will have to wait until tomorrow as will the post box! I spent over 10 hours on the bike today, no wonder I’m stuffed.

I met Michele, John and Brett at 6:30pm for dinner, we went to a really nice seafood restaurant. After dinner we went for a walk along the beach, and paddled a little bit. I can’t believe how warm the sea is, and no wind!

We are staying at an Ibis hotel so we were fairly confident of it having air conditioning and Wifi and we were right, we have both.

The beaches from France until the town before Cannes were stony rather than sand, so I was happy to see sand reappearing in Cannes.

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