In the 1800s Nice had a beachfront walkway of marble so the rich folks didn’t have to get their clothing all dirty on the beach. It’s called the Promenade des Anglais – but the marble is all gone now but it is a lovely walk along the seashore. The walk is 4 miles but we only did a few – it was perfect weather wise. Although I wore long sleeves and a coat, Brody and Brenna were in short sleeves, it was just one of those days where it is different for everyone. We made a couple of stops along the was at the Musee Des Beaux-Artes and Musee Massena.
Beaux-Artes is a museum with art – we already did the town’s big name artists. It was only two floors and had a diverse selection of items but nothing that made us say “Wow”. They had a Rodin but it looked like a resin reproduction so I’m not sure everything in the place was legit. There were a few rooms that were blocked off – perhaps that is where the good stuff was kept. It was not a long visit and it was free so still enjoyable, but not a must see for future visitors. But if you are a Dufy or Vanloos fan – go go go – they have rooms dedicated to them – they must have some sort of following to get whole rooms.
The Musee Massena was a walk through the beach side home of one of Napoleon’s generals. It did not resemble any beach house that I have ever seen – it was a marble mansion with decor all over the place. Everything was in French so we couldn’t read the information very well. The upper floors had pictures about the history of Nice – lots of old advertisements as they marketed the community for people to attend during winter and also to enjoy for Carnival. They had items from people who lived in or visited the house in the late 1800s. This included Napoleon’s vest. I wondered if Napoleon came for a visit and accidentally left it or if the host kept it and pulled it out at parties, “He was here and this is the little vest he wore”. It was just an odd piece of history to have in the collection.
The goal of the evening was to get a picture of the sunset from the top of Castle Hill. This endeavor included running up the hill to make it in time and then meandering around the perimeter trying to find an unlocked gate after closing time. We finally found our way out and had a great walk back to Vieux Nice along the shore. We rewarded ourselves for making our way out of the park with Gelato. We visited Fenocchio where we had to choose from 99 flavors. Our family is not very good at making decisions and the agony of picking the right flavor was compounded by the fact that they don’t offer taste samples. Luckily everyone was happy with their choices which were: Grand Marnier, Amaretto, [Delta flight free cookies as an ice cream – we can’t remember the name], Kinder, Nocciotella, and Caramel.
The children can get some television shows through the internet – of course it is nothing good that parents would be interested in. The girls are addicted to Africa’s Next Top Model and Brody has seen every episode of Fear Factor. Brody talks about how he would win Fear Factor and he is ready to apply. Today we had a local lunch which had shrimp – the shrimp were completely whole. We peeled and ate them in the traditional manner and then challenged Brody to live up to his Fear Factor boasting and eat a shrimp eyeball. He did it. And then he ate the other one. Brenna has a small video clip on her blog if you care to watch his bravery.