So Nice

18 September 2011 § Leave a comment

18 septembre 2011

Yesterday, we went to Nice.  I tired myself out reading thirty pages of French (La Gloire de mon père, a memoire-novel by a provençal) and writing two letters (more about that later) during the two-hour ride there, but after we started our tour at the Chagall museum, all of my energy came back, because the paintings amazed me.  I did not realise that 1) Chagall used such colour and 2) Chagall used the Bible so much.  In the exhibit that we saw, every painting was about something from the Bible, and our guide explained the paintings well.  Here are some (I spy heaps of Biblical imagery, especially in the second):

My favourite one from the exhibit

Here is the artist himself:

Marc Chagall

Then, I spent my entire semester food budget on lunch

Sara and Caroline

(Nice is not-so-nicely expensive), and a group of us hiked up to a large waterfall on the same hill that used to house a dungeon for prisoners.  At least living next to the waterfall would have been nice (everyone kept making Nice jokes inadvertently all day).

I forgot to take a photograph of the waterfall, but here is the Nice coast

Then, we wandered around in the old part of town—I bought a few books at a book market, because I was left unsupervised for a few minutes.

BOOKS

We bought some ice cream, meeting a few American basketball players in the meantime (where was Mason?), and then found a pleasant bower under which to rest until it was time to return.  Sara, Maggie, and I collapsed on the kitchen counter for a dinner of mostly bread and fruit and then went out for dessert with Ellen and Alex.  In France, life is very much centered around food, and people linger over meals and take several hours to spend time with each other.  So we shared a delicious chocolate cake and chatted for a few hours.

Maggie with the cake

About the letters: at the post office, it is always lunch time, apparently, because it is always closed when I go.  Maggie and I go there almost every day, and we even found one in Nice (that was closed).  When it is finally open, however, I can mail the stack of letters and post cards (eight, actually) I have to send.  In the meantime, I fully expect to receive letters from everyone who is reading this.

This morning, it actually rained—one of the rare sixty-five days a year during which this happens.  Since I love running in the rain, that was a pleasant time (also, the rain scares the aixois people, I think, so they hibernated inside), especially because I found some figs and met a French student.  Then, we tried to find a church, but we could not figure out the door system, so we eventually wandered away a bit depressed and bought peaches at the market (the one that has happened every day except Christmases since some year in the fourteenth century—!).  We kept seeing old/odd cars:

This is also evidence that it rained

Sara is actually still in Kenya

Also, Sara and one of our Vanderbilt roommates cleaned the kitchen to a ridiculous degree, meaning that we can now venture there without fear.  In the afternoon, Maggie and I went to the natural history museum to look at some dinosaur-y things and a small, strange exhibit about Australia.

Note its weird foot claw

Natural history museum

Then, Sara’s sister, Jenn, arrived for a visit!  The coming week should be full of new experiences and exploration and . . . school work.

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