Monday, October 30, 2006

All at sea

I guess you'd have to call it that when you've just spent several seconds pushing your mobile phone up and down the mouse-mat wondering why the cursor doesn’t move.

There was a terrific musical called ‘Jamaica’ (I think), with Lena Horne and Ricardo Montalban, that I never saw but played the disc almost smooth. The opening number is ‘Big Boat in de Bay’, and I sing it every time I wake up and there’s a cruise ship out there. DG says great song, crap singer. (There are three there today - boats, not singers.)
There was a fireworks display last night. Nothing unusual there – there’s one nearly every week - but this one was on the ship. Or is it a ship? It’s more like a floating city – 138,000 tons, 15 decks, 3,114 passengers – ie. half the population of Villefranche. It’s the Voyager of the Seas and is so big it’s obscene - but beautiful.
I’m a fan of cruising, but not on this scale. But the fireworks were magnificent – moonlit night, sitting on terrace with a glass of cool crisp white, every bang echoing to and fro among the surrounding hills. Been reading a few reviews: ‘take Immodium’; ‘dirty’; ‘service non-existent’, and the like. Seems the whole thing looks much better from on-shore than on board. So I’ll stay up here and keep my illusions.

There’s a man in Antibes - just along the coast - who sells nostalgia. He’s called Jeffrey of London and his products are things that are not commonly found in French supermarkets, but without which many expats can’t exist: Heinz baked beans and salad cream, Bird’s custard, Oxo beef cubes and the like. I’d say surely gastronomic change is what coming to France is about – except that we do bring two things with us: tea bags – the French ones are too weak, even if they're English exports; and dry ginger ale – local ginger ale isn’t dry at all and ruins your Jack Daniel's. So if you're passing this way with room in your case…

6 comments:

Cliff said...

I guess you'd have to call it that when you've just spent several seconds pushing your mobile phone up and down the mouse-mat wondering why the cursor doesn’t move.

That is laugh out loud funny. It's because everything's wireless. Anything could be a mouse.

I often pick up the nearest remote control when a phone rings.

Ed R said...

I'm still mostluy wired and a DOS dinosaur besides so my first intinct isn't even to reach for the mouser but teh keyboard. Try typing on a plate of lasagna sometime.

justin said...

Mrs C and I have travelled around
Europe quite a bit in the last 5 years or so, and can confirm how bad the tea-bags are. I wonder why an entrepeneur hasn't seen this as a possible niche market - supplying proper "English" tea to Europe. Perhaps everyone drinks coffee all the time instead?
I enjoyed reading about the new use for your mobile phone, RW... it's the sort of thing I do, e.g. putting unusual things in the fridge when I'm clearing the kitchen surface. Now where did I put the marmalade?

riviera writer said...

Funny thing, JUstin, is that when French people come to our place - whether in UK or France - they LOVE the tea. So who is it in France that buys the gnat's urine? I think I know - it's the expats that have forgotten what it should be like. (We use PG Tips, but if you buy them here they're just like the rest.)

justin said...

Yes, I agree PG Tips are good, but I think Twinings English Breakfast tea (loose leaf) is even better -- I drink it all the time (and buy it in tea-bags to take abroad with us).

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