Vieux Ville - Menton
There are basically two ways to get up to the Basilica St Michel above town:
a) by the half dozen flights of stairs from the street at the old port, or
b) through the ancient meandering alleys that you enter from the sea level pietons (pedestrian-only streets), and small squares.
We have done both, and I recommend the tiered stairs - far more interesting. In the hot summer though, you may want to use the shadier streets.
Much of the old city of Menton is in need of an upgrade - everything from a simple power-washing to a more costly plastering and repainting.
Is that a flying spirit on the wall behind the lantern?
Or, the map of Africa behind Joanne?
(more on spirits below)
There is a day care/child-minding centre at the basilica square. I feel these little ones look so glum, so sad, wanting to go out and play, to go fishing, perhaps, but alas, they are behind bars ...
Why is that?
So the spirits of the dead can overlook the living from up on high.
Wandering around the cemetery was a rather macabre experience.
This is not a headless spirit (above). I ventured a little closer and found it to be a gown draped over a Greek or Roman column. Somewhat freaky at first. Then a sudden waft of cold air blew across my shoulders at my back. I quickly turned, and somehow my camera recorded a fleeting movement of a haunting presence - black, weightless, and floating, then disappearing behind a large tomb.
Lost in translation. We got the heck out of the cemetery, snaking our way down into town, in search of a yoga mat. For about fifteen years now I have been keeping myself out of the Chiropractor's office with a pre-breakfast stretching routine. I usually use a thin, roll-up yoga mat, and vowed to buy one in France as soon as I could. The small store we went into surely sold such a common item, but I was mistaken. Worse, I caused some trouble trying to explain what I wanted. The staff clearly did not speak English. I got confused with my French. Grasping for words, I meant to say excercise but instead said excorcisme.
It's Friday, so a short train ride to just across the border into Italy -to Ventimiglia's large outdoor market where a wide variety of products are available for sale - edible, drinkable, and wearable.
(photo left) wingless, limbless green birds that resemble pears
Now, one cannot go to Italy without buying a pair of shoes there. The Italians make the best. The ones in the picture (below) were hand made in Florence.
Which pair did I buy?
To be revealed in a pre-dinner pose in a future posting in this blog
Dinner Recommendation: Maison Martin & Fils, Rue des Martins
It is time to leave Menton, pick up our car in Nice, drive very slowly west along the Med, then a little north to our next two-week stay in the Luberon: in Vaison-la-Romaine.
For more travel and other photography visit my website