Friday, June 17, 2011

Rome to Barcelona - Nice

I love Nice and will always love Nice. It is very cosmopolitan and of all European places, reminds me of Southern California. After all these years living in Southern California (almost 3 decades),  it grows on you, the melting pot of people, being Asian, this is important. Nice has its own melting pot and resembles Southern California more than any other places in Europe. How I even landed in Nice, quite unknown to us Californians is interesting. Way back, some ex colleagues of mine decided we should visit Provence together one summer. As the day grew closer, one by one decided to change their mind and not go. But moi, it was a different story, I told them, 'even if no one eventually goes, I'm still going.' It was just after 9-11 and the fares were a give away. I saw advertised in the Wall Street Journal, a fare of $650 (US) Los Angeles to Nice return. I was on my way and that was how I landed in Nice and fell in love with it. I've been in and out of Nice many times since then. $650 can't buy you a one way ticket these days!
The other beauty about Nice is the availability of buses and trains to most parts of Europe and to the out lying areas of Provence. I took the TGV to Avignon and from Avignon, took the trains to Marseilles, Arles and Aix en Provence. The trains also goes to the cute little villages that dot the border between France and Italy. The bus or train will let you off right in the middle of Monaco. It's amazing. I love Nice.It is so easy to get around in and around Nice.
It was my early forays in independent traveling and the thrill continues till today. I felt like MFK Fischer or Patricia Wells..... (I'm kidding).

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