Beautiful Ocean Path (Antibes, France)

One of the highlights of this place, was the lovely walking path that you can take from Old town Antibes, winding along the coast, past beaches and parks, around the peninsula to Cap D’Antibes (there is a famous hotel at the called Hotel du Cap–Eden Roc, where past guests include Marlene Dietrich, Duke/Duchess of Windsor, Elizabeth Taylor).  Looking at its surroundings, I can see why–a subdued richness and privacy with gorgeous views of the ocean (contrasting the blatant excess of luxury in nearby Cannes).

Below are some lovely photos of our walkie.  There is always something meditative about watching the ocean, the vastness of it beneath the open sky and the perpetual rushing waves; One can find so many important Life analogies and philosophies by just staring at the open sea. For example, gazing at the horizon, how it seems to expand endlessly outward, reminds me that I am but one little piece of the world and whatever worries I may have, they are really not a big deal in the big picture. And the never-ending rhythm of the waves serve as a soothing reminder that life goes on, regardless of sunshine or blustering storm.  Or, looking at the sandy beach, how it is really comprised of millions of singular grains, each unique and different–formed in their own way (wave upon wave crashing, shaped by other grains with the course of time) is representative I think, of every person–their uniqueness, formed by their experiences surrounding them and how each one of us is important, all contributing to form this beach of humanity!!! (sarcasm–hehe twas going a bit overboard I know, but you get my point: the sea is a lovely thing to behold)

So! The trail at areas, became a bit narrow and difficult to navigate (well, we were wearing our walking gear of …flip flops–not exactly supportive hiking/walking shoes–but we made do). The unique view too of being on a chunk of land jutting out such that your view is 180+..208…214  hehe degrees of open sea, gives a feeling of freedom that one wouldn’t get when just looking say, at the regular beach. Basically it makes you feel like you’re floating out to sea.

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The Super Upside of Rue Sade B&B in Antibes, France (Breakfast!)

Bed and Breakfasts

Ahhh, I used to think they were really “quaint” “cozy” (i.e. shabby) establishments that were a bit too rustic for my taste (as in living in too-close quarters with one’s host).  However after our honeymoon in Italy, and amazing experiences at B&Bs in Positano, Capri and Tuscany, B&Bs became in my mind, beautifully appointed, comfortable, spacious clean places (waaaay better than a hotel that one would get for the same price) with warm gracious hosts and delicious ALL YOU CAN eat home-made breakfasts.

However after our negative experience at a B&B in Aix (refer to My Vents)–the Cons of B&Bs grew considerably. Luckily Rue Sade B&B, where we stayed in the lovely seaside town of Antibes, re-established all of the wonderful Pros of staying at a B&B: warm gracious, kind and welcoming hostess, lovely room (though the bathroom was a bit on the smaller side) and most of all–the Piece de Resistance–was the absolutely awesome/amazing daily breakfasts, which I shall share below!

Each morning, in the lovely high ceilinged airy dining room with high windows overlooking the little place (piazza) below, we would have delicious breakfast at the rustic large wooden table located off the modern kitchen. Our wonderful hostess would have ready, freshly sliced (from the Provencal Market, literally a one minute walk away) strawberries, blueberries, melon in a cup along with a glass jar of fresh plain yogurt. Then, she would make the most perfect light, moist fluffy and buttery scrambled eggs, placing it in a cute cup–made to order.

And thats not all….In the kitchen, help-your-self, were loaves of freshly baked olive bread, French bread, CROISSANTS!! (oh they were miraculous flaky-light buttery puffs of heaven) rosemary bread etc–from the local bakery (again, literally a one minute walk away), a board of every-changing gourmet meats and cheeses: rosemary crusted ham, silky ribbons of prosciutto, herb crusted chevre, creamy brie, etc.  which you could all pile onto your plate as you please.  My favorite (which I discovered only here) was the BEST dijon mustard I’ve ever had in my life: Maille 1747 Dijon de Fine Mustard.

I would slather this perfect and complex, not-too-salty but elegantly balanced mustard onto my bread selection(s) and add a slice of meat and cheese on top. Heaven….and then she always had a cup of freshly squeezed orange juice and freshly pressed rich strong coffee.

That my dears…is happiness 🙂

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Burlap Restaurant (Del Mar, CA)

People-watching is a fascinating thing. To see the various social interactions, to guess their thoughts and to witness their vanities on display is quite amusing and interesting– Heh, it could serve as a homework assignment for one’s sociology/anthropology course. We humans are a funny species indeed.

So! Why am I talking about people-watching on a restaurant review? Well, to not mention it would completely disregard the ambiance and vibe of the place.  It is truly a gathering place (to see and be seen) of the stereotypical Del Mar crowd: wealthy, wasp-y, surferish…COUGARS and (whatever the name is for older men on the prowl). Being in the cosmetic derm field, it is also a great practice ground at identifying which combination of procedures a particular female may have elected: Botox, Fillers, Lifts, post-laser/chemical peel, and oh those wonderful lip injections. (As an aside…it is weird or perhaps uncanny isn’t it, that the more one does these procedures, the more everyone looks the same: a surprised, clown-lipped, lioness.) A very amusing evening indeed…(On another aside, hey I’m all about to each their own regarding maintaining one’s youthful appearance, but I can’t help but make these comments when so many of the obviously-enhanced are concentrated in one location)

OKAY so onto the food 🙂 I’d say hmmm…about 4 fuzziepotatoes out of 5, overall for the creative combos and fresh quality of ingredients (there was some deduction due to a meat dish that was a little on the dry side).

Enjoy the yummie Slide Show!

Love. random thoughts*

Our wedding cake--eaten one year later (still tasted good! passion fruit filling and cream + a bit of freezer burn hehe) I wonder where this tradition came from, saving the topper for a year?

Our one year wedding anniversary was just this past September 3rd, and we celebrated it in Antibes, France. I can’t believe how fast this year has passed and how just the previous year we were consumed with wedding planning etc. But I think these kinds of yearly anniversaries are a great time to take pause and reflect on the big picture, taking a break from the all-to-easily-consuming day-to-day activities of life.

Weddings–marriage– It is actually an amazing concept no? That two humans (heh taking the “scientific view”) would develop a feeling, Love…something in my opinion, that has nothing to do with evolution–rather perhaps would be detrimental to evolution–yet it exists, which I think shows even more how we are not merely products of genetic mutations + time..but rather something more that, were we to be truly humble, would acknowledge as the workings of a higher being.

To be able to find such a comprehensive connection with another person is really a miracle–I have always believed it to be so, and hopefully without abusing that word, it is so rare–a miracle— to be able to find someone whom you can share this amazing feeling with–a complex and evolving and never-stagnant thing; Love.  This person who will be your partner your companion, to ride through the ups and downs and rich experiences of life with. A person who brings you joy and teaches you more and more about yourself–about patience, about understanding –about thinking of something else besides yourself.

Looking back on the wedding–truly it was one of the best days of our lives. Why? Not just because it was the official joining of our lives, but it was a day where all of our loved ones—the dear family members and friends– were all together sharing the happiness and joy (or to put it simply, getting together for some good food, wine, and dancing/silly times!).  It really doesn’t get much more better than that–just the mere fact everyone was there–made it so special to us.

This past week–I learned or rather, was re-affirmed of the vastness of Love– Both of my grandparents, married 76 years, passed away within a day of each other. Spending the past week with my family and relatives, reminiscing warm and plentiful memories, above all, what I remember of my grandparents was their amazing Love; for each other, for everyone around them.  Through their lives, they exemplified peace, harmony and an aura of genuine warmth, and I hope to carry that with me as not only an honor to their memory, but also as a reminder from Above, of what really matters in life: Love.

So, cheers to you and yours, to another year filled with Loff!