October 3rd 2016
So day two we made breakfast at the apartment on the hill in Seborga (blue ouvas this day) and sat around leisurely watching the sun illuminate more and more of the valley – most relaxing – before finally deciding that we would spend the day in Monaco.
This trip has been extra relaxing for me as I had to do almost zero planning. John made the apartment reservations and Mike rented the car. They have both been here before so have ideas on where to go, and we really didn’t have much of a travel agenda. All I really needed to do was get myself here.
So it was off to Monaco and some circular driving before finally finding a parking space way, way, deep in the bowels of a parking structure. Like seven levels down from the street.
We quickly found at the harbor that some quite large event had recently, as in the previous day, concluded. It turned out to have been a international yacht show which I was unfairly blamed for us having missed as I showed up “a day late.” Dear Readers should pay no attention to these mean-spirited and clearly misdirected accusations. John and Mike went dumpster diving and recovered these banners, covered in grime and filth, which they proceeded to carry around all day. We circled the harbor on a surprisingly warm October day and headed for the Casino.
The Casino Monte-Carlo turned out to be closed until an hour later and no amount of Mike casting hexes on the security personnel would change their minds about denying us entry.
We then made our way back down to the water and up the steep sweat-inducing hike to the old city and the area around the Palace. John suggested a little sandwich shop but I insisted the one next door would be superior, only to find out they were actually the same place. John and Mike has some reasonable looking pizza while I had a perfectly horrible ham and cheese panini for 9 Euro.
We circled around past the Musée Océanographique (incorrectly labeled in a rival blog as “Geographique”) and bought tickets to tour the palace. Mike discovered a yellow submarine and demanded I take a photo of him next to it.
There were signs for two queues for the palace, but the one labeled “Individual” seemed to be roped off so we stood in the one for “Tours” which wasn’t very long in any case. John made it through the line, but the young girl in charge discovered that Mike and I weren’t with a tour and, even though we were at the head of the line, insisted we switch over to the other line, then made us back up so she could rope it off, only to immediately unrope it and let us through. It seemed to serve no purpose whatsoever, except to exert her minimal authority. It sure put us in our place, though. We were much chastened.
The palace was nice enough, but you can only take so much audio details about paintings and furniture. After that there was some discussion about driving to some Roman ruins on the hills above the city, except that neither John nor Mike could remember if this was Eze or La Turbie even though they had both been there before. We drove first to Eze and drove around the car park a bit with much arguing amongst the other two as to whether or not this was our goal. We then drove to the pretty little village of La Turbie where there were definite ruins and where we easily found parking – because it was Monday and the site was closed.
It did, in any case, provide a lovely vista of Monaco.
A return to Seborga and a quick survey of eateries in the village indicated that the only one open (Monday seems to be problematic in Italy) was the one we ate at previously, and the owner informed us (in Spanish this time) that it was muy temprano (1745) and we could return mas tarde (around 1930) for dinner. So we repaired to the apartment for bad movies.
This is a decades-long tradition. In high school we discovered a book called the Golden Turkey Awards about the worst movies in Hollywood history and our lives were forever changed. This evolved some fifteen years ago to include our friend Al would would host “Mashes” (as in Monster Mash) at his home and his lovely wife Char would fix us a delicious dinner, followed by several bad movies. Al could have come on this trip, and was highly encouraged to do so, but was his usual difficult self (a virtual nattering nabob of negativism) and refused, petulantly denying this was a week-long Mash on the Italian Riviera.
Well, dear readers, as of last night there is no doubt. This is definitely a Mash. Of that there can be no doubt. We watched Birdemic: Shock and Terror. Readers unfamiliar with this cinematic gem are encouraged to read up a little about it. It was really bad. The shock came less from the painfully bad CGI birds who terrifyingly hover without flapping their wings than from the startling bad audio, stilted acting, and zero plot. I mean, really, who could resist bad CGI birds who make dive-bombing noises, spit acid, and explode on impact. And, oh yes, seem to be able to kill by make superficial slashes on the faces of their victims. It was awesome!
After our mas tarde dinner we once again walked back to the apartment and tried to watch Wild 90, but it was late, the movie was bad in a not enjoyable way, and we retired for the evening.