Nice day 3 (Monte Carlo)

The day started slowly. We had decided we would head to Monte Carlo later that afternoon so we could have a night out there as well as see it during the day a bit. This meant that we fluffed around for a fair bit of time and then I had a sudden realisation that I had no idea what I was doing in the next few days. As in where I was going to go. Kath and Greg are going off to stay with a friend and I didn’t want to impose myself on that even though I had planned on following them for a while. I did a fair bit of research into Contiki tours which was an idea Kath had. I have seen a fair bit of stuff already that the tours would cover but the idea was that I just go and have a good time with a bunch of people. Doesn’t matter anyway because there was no tours starting in the next week or two but had any availability at all. I then decided that I will head up to the Baltics now.

This however proved very difficult. I spent about 3 hours looking at flights and comparing and altering journeys with no luck at all. Well, that’s not true. I had some luck but then that was destroyed by bad luck. At one point I had picked a flight and was going to get there relatively cheap but while I looked at something else, the price jump 40 Euro. A similar thing happened later. I had found something that might work going via Berlin but then the good flight in and the good flight out left from different airports. The thing is that Europe has so many different carriers that you have to compare, It becomes very tedious. And with the internet not exactly perfect, it becomes even slower. Anyway, I eventually gave up on the Baltics and decided to go to Oslo instead. I managed to find a flight easy enough. And as I am writing I have realised I haven’t booked any accommodation. I’ll be right back…

Wow… Ok… So that also took a very long time. Thanks for your patience. At least that’s all booked now. Crazy expensive though but I knew what I was getting myself into when I looked at Scandinavia. Back to yesterday, I booked the flight and it was about 3pm and we decided to go get some lunch. We then came back and put on our best backpacker clothes and went to the train station. They have trains running every half hour and the trip only takes 2 minutes so it’s pretty cruisey. When we arrived, you could feel the difference this place just is. It’s cleaner than anything I have ever remember seeing and I felt so safe and secure too. We came out of the train station and walked around the permanent fair ground that they have right next to the harbour. Apparently Greg loves the fair and if we weren’t holding him back, he would have played every game there.

We then started walking towards the casino. The road takes you up, a hill that overlooks the harbour and gives great views of that and of all the apartment blocks on the hills opposite. We took our time climbing, taking photos along the way. We eventually reached the Monte Carlo casino and walked around the area looking for potential eating places. We didn’t really find much that jumped out at us. There was some Italian places but everything was very expensive and after walking for about an hour (it sounds like a long time but we really were just cruising around, not getting desperately hungry or anything) we decided to go back to the cheapest option we found which was a French restaurant.

We went in and ordered some beer and then our food. I had 6 snails to start 🙂 . They were served in the shell with a garlic pesto of some sort. The waiter was really good, he showed me how to eat them as I was given a pair of tongs, a fork very similar to an oyster fork and some bread. Turns out you hold the snail with the tongs (Cos they are hot. I think they grill them inside the shell) and scoop out the meat from the inside and use the bread to dunk in afterwards to clean up any spare sauce. And they tasted pretty good. The snail itself doesn’t really have much flavour and a bit of a chewy texture but the pesto was what gave it all the flavour. I do rate it.

Am I about to eat or do surgery?

For mains, Kath had a pizza and me and Greg had steaks. Greg ordered his because he likes steak and I ordered mine because the waiter said it is kind of their specialty. It was pretty good again. I think it had been aged for a bit and there was no blood at all even though it was cooked rare. With our meal we had 2 bottles of a Rhone valley wine. After our mains, I ordered a tiramisu and we had another 2 bottles of Bordeaux. Basically we left absolutely hammered. Just as we left, Greg mentioned that we only had 15 minutes to catch the last train back to Nice. We didn’t make it. Luckily for us, there was a German guy who was in the same boat. He spoke great English and helped us go to the bus station where they still had buses running.

We got on the bus and I’m sure some stuff happened and we talked to our German friend (He was a chef) and when we arrived at Nice, It was not anywhere that we knew. We just kinda walked around going from person to person, asking for directions to the train station where our hostel was. One of the people I asked, I had to cross the street to talk to and as I got closer and talked to her, I realised she is probably a hooker. That was kind of amusing. Anyway, we made it back somehow and I went straight to bed.

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2 thoughts on “Nice day 3 (Monte Carlo)

  1. Love it Jacob. Thanks for the laugh. Never having been in such a situation myself of course, your story took me every staggering step of the journey. Safe travels.

  2. I agree with every thing your Dad said in his comment Jacob…..you write a fabulous blog and I love reading them…..keep it up and keep having a ball.
    Love from us all xxxx

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