We arrived at Les Issambres after driving in the pelting rain for most of the way from Puymeras. We caught up with Marianne and Franz who we hadn’t seen for 8years. Unfortunately they had arrived in their holiday house from Germany to find it flooded. It was in a terrible state when they arrived in April and was in the process of drying out while we were there. Friends had offered them a house for a time and we all stayed there instead. Franz took us down to the ferry the next day and Maurice and I went across to St Tropez for a few hours.
The main town and harbour is quite small and wandered around with the hundreds of other tourists,saw the boats of the rich and famous and had a coffee at a nice little cafe. It was lovely and sunny until the late afternoon when it poured again and we even had some hail. So much for Summer!
We went out to a nice little fish restaurant near down at the port.
Maurice and I set out the next day to Mandelieu which is just north of Nice to see our friend Patrick who is now working there. We drove through the mountains and down along the “Cote d’Azur” which did look beautiful in the sunshine. The traffic was very heavy along the coast as it is only a single lane. we avoided drdiving through Cannes as the film festival was in progess and trying to get through the traffic would have been a nightmare. After a nice chat and coffee with Patrick we set off for “Beaulieu Sur Mer” a beautiful town set into the mountain with spectacular views to the sea. My mother and her friend (who is now 92 and lives in a nursing home in London) went on holiday to Beaulieu in 1948 and as
I had seen many photos of their time there, I wanted to visit it.
We set off again through the winding mountain roads via Monaco, Monte Carlo to Italy and found our way to our lovely friend Mary Foreman who is now 89 and still living after 45years in her charming converted farmhouse in Tuscany between Florence and Sienna. It was again raining for the latter half of the day but we found the house again after 12years and found Mary as full of life as ever. We spent the night there as well as Mary’s Scottish carer and two of her friends.
It was at least not raining when we left and stopped for lunch in “Panzano in Chianti”. A famous butcher and restauranteur “Dario”
who runs the “Macelleria Antica Cecchini” has wonderful meat and Salamis for sale as well as some delicious salt flavoured with herbs. We ate for 10euros a delicious meal at his restaurant upstairs from the butcher’s shop. It consisted of one very long table where everyone sat together and the meat was cooked on a large grill in front of you.
We headed then to Sezze Scalo and my cousin who is always very welcoming.

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