Monday, November 16, 2009

A bit of the French Riviera........

I did, I did...............missed you that is. But I sure did enjoy visiting another part of the world and spending time with that romantic man of mine. It was an incredible trip and I thought I would share just a few of my favorite photos as I ease back into the work groove and everyday life. This first photo is my favorite, a street in Sorrento, Italy (my favorite town to revisit for a longer stretch) and a reminder when touring these European towns and cities to always take time to look up. Isn't it an incredibly beautiful building?

I didn't notice the wording on this beach sign until I was downloading this photo taken along the spectacular Amalfi Coast. I would love to see this "Bikini" beach in the summer, it looks like a fun place to soak up the rays.

The ride along the Amalfi Coast was breathtaking and not for anyone with a fear of heights. It's landscape is surreal in it's majestic and rugged beauty. We live in the flattest part of Canada so this stretch was particularly captivating to me. Such natural beauty........ we couldn't shoot photos fast enough as we navigated the countless twists and turns.

The Trevi Fountain in Rome has to be one of the most beautiful fountains in the world. It was extremely busy with tourists and the guard told us the only time to see it without masses of people is around 5-6 in the morning. If staying in Rome I think it would be most worthwhile to pick up an espresso and quietly wait as the sun rises and shimmers over this glorious piece of history.

Trevi Fountain ~ Rome, Italy

When we came out of the Vatican and St Peter's the sky turned a weird colour and I saw a few bystanders make the sign of the cross. It was a reflective moment as most just stood still and absorbed the somber mood in St. Peter's Square. Probably more than a few were thinking it was some kind of sign from you know who. No really, it was that weird. Maybe it was just me (spiritual but not religious) but I don't think I was alone in feeling a profound feeling of awe.

As we stood there in St Peter's Square and turned to leave, the lights came on in the Pope's apartment........

Thankfully, on to some of that incredibly reflective sunshine in Nice and Cannes a few days later. Our weather had been windy and overcast up to this point, certainly nothing that hindered our enjoyment but our ship did miss two ports, Livorno and Marseilles, because of strong winds. I used those days to sleep in after a series of 6 am wake-up calls, pamper myself with a massage and manicure, and have others get my unruly hair back in order. If I was going to miss Florence, Italy and a lovely arranged lunch in St. Remy de Provence at least I was going to feel good about it.

Just relaxing on the Cote d' Azur . The Promenade des Anglais in Nice. My kind of place.

I was entranced with the detail and brilliant colour of these shaped marzipan fruits and
des cochons seen in the outdoor markets in Nice.

My husband was taken with this most civilized approach to daily reading outside a cafe in Cannes.
I think he fancies himself living the life of a French artistrocrat.

Upon our return we (jokingly) emailed this photo to our son with the following message "Please don't expect any inheritance in the future as we have decided to leave absolutely no funds behind and we have purchased this lovely little spot in Nice which overlooks the Mediterranean coast. We are sure you understand and approve. ~ Love Mom and Dad XOXO

Return email from said son " Need nothing.......spend away starting now" Love Ozzie ~ XO

All photos by Jim Chase


  1. Ohhh... I am so jealous! It looks like you had an amazing trip ~~~

    Travel, Travel, Travel!!
    xo Laura

  2. wonderful pictures ! Loving those marzipan fruits, though I hate it to eat - they look adorable. what a wonderful place !

  3. First of all, Sande, what a wonderful trip you have been on. Our holiday this year was a week in Amalfi and a week in Sorrento. Gorgeous, isn't it?
    Secondly, I didn't realise that was in your header !! All I ever think of are the presents/parcels and the maid. I have used that photo before, as well !!!! It's my age you know.
    ....oh and I love the email to your son and his smashing reply. I would like to think that my children's replies would be the same, but I won't hold my breath !!!!

  4. My husband grew up in the South of France and his parents still live there. It is a magical world! Your photos are wonderful!

  5. Dear Sande~
    These photos take my breath away! BEAUTIFUL!! That Dr. Austin is SO SWEEET!!! He needs nothing but to know his Mom & Dad are happy! You have created a true masterpiece with him Sande. You life is an inspriation to me. Thank you for sharing it with us. What an amazing trip. I think I would not be able to leave that coastline.

  6. Oh Sande! Your pictures are amazing and your trip looks like it was fabulous! I love the message to your son and I love his reply even more!

  7. I love your son's reply and your little joke.

    Love Renee xoxo

  8. Sande, it looks like your trip was magnificent! Great photos. ...and love the note to your son!

  9. Sande,
    You were in our favorite part of the world. Sean and I adore the South of France, and we cannot wait to return next year. Your son's reply is priceless! Of course, he probably knew that even though no inheritance, he would be able to enjoy a great apartment in Nice! Very, very smart doctor!

    Glad to have you back!

  10. Sande,

    I am so glad that you and your "romantic" husband had a safe and amazing trip. Sorrento, Rome, Nice, Cannes...all gorgeous!!! The drive to Sorrento is awe-inspiring in itself. We stayed there one night (away from the city center) and I remember thinking as we were driving through Sorrento- "We should spend an entire day!" You know if you and your husband bought that apartment in Nice, you would have strange blog friends like me showing up at your doorstep:)
    It's ironic that you also missed Florence, Italy. The last time I visited Italy I was sick the entire time we were in Florence, so I only saw the inside of the hotel room...I was quite disappointed.
    After seeing these beautiful images, I can only imagine how these rich riveria colors are going to inspire your gift wrapping!

  11. All I can honestly say is today I started chemo again and know that I will never have the money it would take for me to take my 17 yr.old grandaughter, Brooke, and myself to where you went..and it is ok...raising her is much more important than realizing my life long dream which is the trip you took. Believe it or not, I am sincerely happy for you and your hubby and think your email to your son was hysterical! His reply was perfect. I am spiritual and religious. That is why I am able to feel happiness for you. Just know that every day when you wake up, before you get out of bed, it means you have been given another day and every day you are given is truly a miracle, even the bad days are miracles, that, I believe God gives to us. So keep up your good work of embracing your days by making us, your readers days, happier!
    love to you and yours,

  12. I want to go so badly! So lucky, romance and everything, doesn't get better than that! Thanks for the great pics!

  13. Sande-Loved you and your son's emails best of all-lovely.

  14. Wish I had been in St. Remy when you would have been nice to meet up. Next time!

  15. It looks like you had an incredible could you not! Good for you, getting away before the cold Ontario winter starts in!
    Welcome back,

  16. Oh Ozzie is gorgeous!

    I adore the first photo, the color is beautiful along with the grey shutters.

    Ahhh the Trevi fountain how romantic. So exciting to see those lights glowing in the Pope's apartment .. gosh, so near yet so far!

    That marzipan fruit is rather enrancing, think I want to touch it.

    Thanks for sharing honey,

  17. I've been to Italy twice but didn't stay long enough either time and never got to the Amalfi Coast. I would love to go. You must be very proud of your son!

  18. I am pea green with envy - what a marvellous trip - thank you for sharing it. x

  19. Dear Sande,

    How absolutely divine. Love the "postcard" to your son. He sounds adorable.

    Your pink cochons gave me a start for a moment. I thought to myself, please, please don't be meat. Whew. Very funny.


  20. Pleased to hear you had such a lovely trip. And that you made it home safe and sound. Love your blog!

  21. Welcome home! Thanks for sharing your gorgeous photos.

  22. Funny about your postcart to your husband announced our two sons that after college they are on their own as we intent to move to the South of France.....not very well received they are worried about their financial welfare without mom and dad, free housing, free checking account and free emergency services...
    loved your images. I spent all my summers in Eze Village, perhaps you visited this beautiful village on the Corniche betwwen Nice and Monaco.

  23. hi Sande! your images are so beautiful! looks like you both had a wonderful time. the marzipan looks so pretty. are those little piggies? well i'm happy to hear you had a wonderful time. the postcard joke was so funny, but i truly love his response. have a lovely day and thanks for visiting me!

    God Bless,

  24. Sande, I love all of your travel photos - thanks so much for sharing. I am so sorry you had the shingles - uggh. Loved your messages to/from Austin. too funny. xo

  25. Fabulous! I am so glad the two of you had a lovely trip. Life is short, and you need to get all the fun and romance you can...especially during a great trip like this. So happy for you, Sande. Best part, you raised a great son.:)
    xo Lidy


Your comments are such a lovely addition to my day. Thank you.


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