14 October 2013

Lighthouse Leaps and Premium Pizza

The weather forecast suggested we should expect rain yesterday, but it was beautifully sunny, so we drove up the coast road to Antibes. There's a lovely, bustling produce market on Sunday mornings, and the town has some nice shops, including an excellent English-language bookstore. We had lunch on the sun-bathed terrace of the Café des Chineurs, where I had the pesto gnocchi. My pasta was good, although described less amusingly on the menu than the croustillant de chèvre chaud, which involved "hot goat cheese its sheet of brick." My mum ordered it anyway and it was very tasty!

To walk off lunch, we walked back through the town, past a regatta that was taking place, and up a relatively steep and rocky path to the Garoupe Lighthouse. To encourage you along the way, there were little paintings depicting the run up to Jesus's crucifixion — just in case you thought you were finding the journey hard. Or something. In any case, the views from the top were pretty impressive, although you can't go inside the lighthouse.

We made it back to Cannes in time for sunset, enjoying some bubbly on the rocks near my parents' flat. The sunset over the Esterel mountains was pretty dramatic last night, as it often is at this time of year.

Last night, my mum prepared a whole feast for dinner, with food from the market in Cannes, starting with prawns, followed by an absolutely delicious medium-rare fillet steak with sautéed potatoes and roasted peppers, and finishing with hand-made chocolate and nougat from a shop in Antibes. I definitely ate too much, but it was all so good.

As my final day was on the short side, I only managed a quick run this morning before packing up and walking into Cannes. We had lunch at an Italian restaurant just off the rue d'Antibes called San Telmo. Finding good pizza in France in general and Cannes in particular has always been a challenge, and although our family favourite, Le Vésuvio, is lovely, the pizzas are only adequate. San Telmo did a lot better, and after we had polished off our starters — two shared platters of burrata, cherry tomatoes, rocket and ham — it was pizza time. I stuck to the margherita and am pleased to report that it was very good; certainly the best I've had in Cannes. The base was thin and crispy, with a puffy crust, and the cheese was a good mozzarella and non-greasy (two common problems with French pizza).

We just had time to walk back to the flat and grab our bags before it was time for me to catch the airport bus. It was another dramatic sunset this evening and although I hate Gatwick Airport, it does at least deliver me back to London Bridge efficiently, so I can't complain too much. And now I'll just have to get used to staying in the UK for the next few months, until I book my next adventure.

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