30 June 2007

A swim anyone?

We're walking down the Old Town today, not up! - not much further and we can jump in the sea. Ready?

29 June 2007

Dieu X deux

Walking up to the top of the Old Town the other day, this shot presented itself - one I'd not seen before - showing the steeples of both churches. This was taken from the cemetery.

28 June 2007

'Don't forget your hat, dear!'

You can imagine it, can't you? 'I've put your hat on the gate, darling!' Does this hat belong to an old man, whose wife worries about his bald head burning in the Menton heat? Who do you think owns this hat? I don't know the answer - just snapped it walking up through the Old Town to the cemetery. Below you see more of the house.

27 June 2007

Clean up time

This craft is owned by the water company so I presume the operator is picking up rubbish and so cleaning up the sea for the bathers. The truth is I'm not really sure but can't think of another reason the water company would be here. Can you?

26 June 2007

The coconut man!

This young man, with his bright clothes and straw hat, is selling slices of iced coconut on this family beach, which is always crowded in summer. You can see the facade of the Old Town on the far side.

25 June 2007

Pur-sang Arabe - 2

No - I didn't take this photograph. Let me introduce you to my friend, fellow dog-lover, and first Guest Photographer, Katie de Gea. Katie lives in the Var and is a brilliant artist and web designer. Take a look at her work on the Pension Milou website.

Not only did we spend two brilliant days at the Arabian horse show but with Katie, I discovered areas of Menton I didn't know existed. She also explained the intricacies of my camera (a Canon Ixus 850 IS) so hopefully, what I've learned will be evident in future photograhs! Katie's camera is a Canon EOS 350D. Thanks for a great weekend, Katie!

24 June 2007

Pur-sang Arabe

Every year Menton hosts a prestigious two-day show - the Menton Arabian Horse Championships. To see these magnificent horses strutting their stuff on the beach and in front of the backdrop of the beautiful Old Town was mind-blowing. I have to say I had tears in my eyes watching these amazing creatures. This year there were horses from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Egypt, Spain, Italy, Qatar, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and of course, France.

23 June 2007

Gorbio village - 2

This shows Gorbio village from the other side - see yesterday's post. Below you see the main road to the village from Menton, taken from the car window. The light could have been better for these photos and one day, I'll get it right! In fact there's another good shot to be had on a walking track that goes to one of the chapels - more for the future, when I get my walking shoes on. All around Gorbio is great walking country and many visitors come here to do just that - walk.

22 June 2007

Gorbio village

Gorbio is one of several hill villages near to Menton. You can photograph Gorbio from either side - indeed from several angles and tomorrow I'll show you a photograph taken from the other side of the village, where the houses tumble down the hillside, rather like Menton Old Town - but smaller of course. This is more or less the view I see when I walk up my track to the mailbox. The large house on the left is the original Maison de Maitre. Sometimes I wish I lived in the old village itself - far greater sense of community I'm sure - much lugging of wine up the steep walking street though (no cars can get into the village, the roads are far too narrow) - so hardly the place to look after other people's dogs, which is what I do.

21 June 2007

Stairway to heaven

Stone steps just off the cobbled road that leads to the top of the Medieval village of Gorbio.

20 June 2007

Le Bastion, musée Jean Cocteau

The Bastion is a small fort, built in 1619 by Honoré II, Prince of Monaco, to defend the bay of Menton. Jean Cocteau, after he had decorated the Salle des Mariages, had the idea of restoring the abandoned fort as a setting for his work. The staircase, tapestry, pebble decoration were all designed by Cocteau himself. The Bastion is situated below the Old Town and in this photograph you are looking towards Italy. You can see photos of the inside of the building and some of Cocteau's work - here.

Discussions are now underway for a purpose-built Jean Cocteau museum which is to be built in front of the main market building. Many think this a good idea except the people who play boules - their club house and the area they play boules will disappear. They are anxiously waiting to hear where they will be rehoused. Progress?

19 June 2007

Facade - 3

When I went out on a boat on Sunday, the idea had been to take this shot - but on a beautiful day. It would be so much better with sunshine glinting off the houses. No matter, I still like it and actually love the wild sky. Hope you like it too. I'll get it right eventually and then it will, hopefully, go into my header.

18 June 2007

Power walking

We're told the Mediterranean diet is the healthiest in the world - all those fresh veggies, fish and olive oil - and that's why the locals live so long. I'll tell you why they live so long - apart from their diet - it's because they have to walk endlessly up and down the hills. Take this lady walking up a very steep and long hill. She eventually took a well-deserved rest, outside the old town walls in Sospel. Her dog, mind you, a rather chubby Miniature Pinscher, looks as if he might not be fed a Mediterranean diet...

17 June 2007

Messing about in a boat

Remember I said I wanted to photograph Menton Old Town from the sea? So today was the day. Picnic packed, wine in the cooler, bikini in the bag - found my friend's boat in the harbour of Garavan. John dropped anchor in a pretty bay in Italy, not far across the border. And then it rained - and rained - and rained. And you can stop laughing, Isabella!

Meanwhile, here's a boat I snapped whilst we were moored - you can 'just' see part of Menton Old Town in the distance. And look at those clouds - and this was 'after' the rain.

16 June 2007

Un miracle?

The intention today had been to show you more photographs of Sospel - however, here is a small diversion. Last night I went out to dinner in Menton and naturally gave myself time to take a few photographs for you, before meeting up with friends. During the afternoon, we'd had one hell of a storm with probably the most rain I've seen fall in such a short time, so it was surprising to see this sand sculpture pretty much intact. Naturally I took a couple of shots in the falling light.

Today's edition of Nice-Matin features almost the same shot with the heading: Un miracle? Le Christ en sable qui décorait la plage du Fossan a résisté a l'orage... so I reckon if it's good enough for Nice-Matin, it's good enough for us.

You can see the sculpture to the left has disappeared and the one to the right (out of shot) is very blurred in outline. So is it a miracle?

15 June 2007

A river runs through it

We're still in Sospel but in a few days, we'll go back down to Menton. We'll be back though as I've much to show you of this mountain village. Here is a view taken from the bridge I posted here. Would you think it heaven to live in one of these houses or apartments with the river below? Or would you rather live with a view of the Mediterranean?

If you had the choice, would you live in a city, by the sea, in the mountains or perhaps by a lake or river? What's your all-time favourite dream of where to live? Perhaps you are lucky enough to live your dream already?

14 June 2007

Across the bridge

We're across the bridge now. There's a small restaurant here - run by two young women. One cooks and one serves. We decided not to sit under the umbrellas, choosing instead to take a table inside the archways, out of the sun where we had omelettes and salad and good crusty bread.

13 June 2007

A view from the bridge

Come with me for a walk across the 12th century fortified bridge in Sospel. Here we are half-way across. Tomorrow we'll walk to the little restaurant you see in the distance.

12 June 2007

A quick slurp

Driving out of Sospel (see yesterday's post) I suddenly came across a couple moving their cattle. The dog did most of the work but at one point grabbed one quick slurp of water from a puddle - it was a hot day - but didn't allow himself more than a second to do it. His master controlled him with hand signals. Lovely dog, a mix of some sort and not much sheepdog evident. Sure knew what he was doing though.

11 June 2007


Menton is surrounded by glorious hill villages. Gorbio has been featured a few times as it's 'my' village but there are others: Roquebrune, Castellar and St. Agnes - to mention just three more. You'll get to see them all as time goes by - tra la la. And more. This is the first posting of Sospel which is 20 kilometres above Menton in the Bévera valley, and therefore not a hill village. You drive up a stunningly beautiful mountain road, very twisty road driving - the things I do for you! Sospel used to be a staging post on the Salt Route and in this photograph you see the fortified bridge, built in the 12th century and used as a Toll bridge for travellers. I had an omelette in a little bar just over the bridge and drank a toast to you all in Perrier - wasn't I good? Wine and driving windy roads don't go together. Let's face it, wine and driving anywhere doesn't go together.

10 June 2007

Vide grenier

There's a vide grenier on in Gorbio village today. Everyone turns out their attics to raise money for the village children's sporting activies. The large tree in the centre is an elm that dates back to 1710. If you click on this following link, you'll find a good way to get a Tall Drink.

09 June 2007

Facade - 2

You've seen shots of the Old Town before. Here's another I took today. I'm quite pleased with this one. Now to get out to sea to get an even better shot... This is taken from a different place and from a different angle to Facade.

08 June 2007

Cimetière du Trabuquet

This photograph was taken from the same level as the main cemetery, which is above the Old Town. Here you see another cemetery, the Cimetière du Trabuquet which is higher still and above Garavan, another part of Menton. I've not yet visited this cemetery, but I will and then, hopefully, so will you. I like cemeteries, find them fascinating places. Do you?

07 June 2007

Gorbio Village - Bar Les Terrasses 2

Here's a wider view of the village 'place' and Bar Les Terrasses that you saw the other day.

06 June 2007

Dogs on beaches

Dogs are allowed on only two beaches in Menton - this is the entrance to one of them, which is just in front of the casino. In the background you see Cap Martin. Are dogs allowed on beaches in your city/country?

05 June 2007


We're back in the centre of Menton today. Not the Old Town tho. This is in the centre of town. The Mairie (Town Hall) stands at the end of this covered area, which is duplicated on the other side of the road. Here you'll find little restaurants and an hotel. I found it because I noticed a little dachshund had come out of the hotel and was walking along the main road. I was concerned. I went into the hotel and asked if the dachshund belonged to them. Oh yes, they said - he'll come back. Hopefully he did. The main road is very busy.

04 June 2007

Gorbio Village - Bar Les Terrasses

There are three restaurants in Gorbio - this one is also very much a bar where you can pop in for a café, a Ricard or a biere and chat to the locals. The owner's wife keeps the village shop. The restaurant has a Corscian menu - often sanglier stew (wild boar) is available. The waiter is a wonderful old boy with barely a tooth in his head and a wonderfully wild moustache. Gorbio, which is just above Menton attracts many walkers so apart from locals, you'll find tourists during the season, with their heavy boots and their sticks. I live 2.5 kilometres below the village (by road) but there is a donkey track I can walk up which takes about 10 or 15 minutes depending on how energetic I'm feeling! Once upon a time all the produce, building materials, everything - was taken to this medieval hill village by donkey using this track.

03 June 2007


This shot of Menton Old Town was taken one morning just near the Italian border before popping across to shop. It was misty and I was disappointed in all the photographs I took. The wizard himself, Abraham Lincoln, very kindly brought it back to life for me. As I've said before I love this facade of jumbled buildings. I must get out on a boat and take a photograph for you. I have a friend with a boat in Menton who is forever asking me but of course there is never time for a day trip out because of the dogs I care for - it's a tough life...

02 June 2007

Underneath the arches

If you look at the posting from two days ago, you'll see these are the same arches taken at dusk. It's nice to sit under them: wining, dining and enjoying a balmy evening.

01 June 2007

Theme Day: A view from my room

Sometimes I can't believe how lucky I am to have a view of the Mediterranean - alright it's only a glimpse - but also the countryside around. The hillside to the right in this photo is densely wooded and full of birds and other wildlife - all of which continues to amaze me, situated as I am, only 11 kilometres from the high-density of Monte Carlo. My neighbour, just above me, keeps pet sheep.

So if you come to visit, we'll be sitting at this table with a bottle of something very drinkable between us. Probably an aperitif before dining in Menton or Gorbio.

To see other views from other rooms around the world, please click on the links below.

Seattle (WA), USA - Manila, Philippines - Albuquerque (NM), USA - Singapore, Singapore - Toruń, Poland - Baton Rouge (LA), USA - Seoul, Korea - Saint Paul (MN), USA - Vantaa, Finland - Madison (WI), USA - Saarbrücken, Germany - Cleveland (OH), USA - Chicago (IL), USA - Cottage Grove (MN), USA - Omaha (NE), USA - Bellefonte (PA), USA - Melbourne, Australia - Stockholm, Sweden - Grenoble, France - Lubbock (TX), USA - Boston (MA), USA - Arradon, France - Hyde, UK - Joplin (MO), USA - Kyoto, Japan - Tokyo, Japan - Kansas City (MO), USA - Naples (FL), USA - Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina - Manila, Philippines - Sydney, Australia - Stavanger, Norway - Bucaramanga (Santander), Colombia - London, UK - Chandler (AZ), USA - Nelson, New Zealand - Singapore, Singapore - Hamburg, Germany - Sydney, Australia - Tenerife, Spain - Moscow, Russia - Lyon, France - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Villigen, Switzerland - Anderson (SC), USA - Oslo, Norway - Evry, France - Hayle, UK - Mumbai, India - Kitakami, Japan - Wassenaar (ZH), Netherlands - Menton, France - Monte Carlo, Monaco - Los Angeles (CA), USA - Cypress (TX), USA - La Antigua, Guatemala - Paderborn, Germany - San Diego (CA), USA - Ampang (Selangor), Malaysia - Madrid, Spain - Lyon, France - Selma (AL), USA - Shanghai, China - Baziège, France - Cologne (NRW), Germany - North Bay (ON), Canada - Rotterdam, Netherlands - Stayton (OR), USA - Sharon (CT), USA - Austin (TX), USA - Hong Kong, China - Trier, Germany - Joensuu, Finland - Paris, France - Greenville (SC), USA - Wailea (HI), USA - Budapest, Hungary - Cork, Ireland - Bastia, France - Vancouver, Canada - Brookville (OH), USA - Jakarta, Indonesia

Related Posts with Thumbnails