After fifteen years living in the south of France with the Italian Riviera just over the fence, it was quite hard to give the Latin culture and traditions up and move into a country with an entirely different way of life such as Hungary in Central Europe.
These regions of France and Italy have given us practically a lifetime worth of wonderful and remarkable experiences that no amount of money can buy. Friends we have met, passions and interests we have unearthed, practical skills we have learned and the lifestyle we got immersed into helped transformed us in the way we think and act, moreso to a non-European like myself. Indeed, they both hold a very special place in our hearts that’s why everytime we get the chance to travel here, it’s like going back home to our family and walking back memory lane.
So on Day 4 of our trip, it was great to see familiar places and dear friends again. It was also very uplifting to see colours! Colours of buildings, flowers, oranges hanging from the trees, the Mediterranean sea in its turquoise glory, and heck, even umbrellas and chairs – they have certainly uplifted our sense of well being, what with the long grey days of winter we have been experiencing in the North.
Hope these photos will also uplift your spirits! Happy browsing.
What a joyful view we have from our hotel window in Menton!
The peak of the orange season in Menton is between February and March hence, we were right in time to view this roadside spectacle of raining oranges, but unfortunately too late to catch the Annual Lemon Festival which took place from 14th February to 4th March this year.
The sea tends to become more inviting if contrasted with Al fresco dining furniture such as these!
… and matching flower displays like this one..
With the many restaurants lining the seaside promenade of Menton, there appears to be a colour competition to attract the diners.
Birds of Paradise already out in March – only in the south of France!
so deliciously pleasing to the eyes!
Colourful buildings in the Old Town
Outside of the Old Town, we find this last church standing.
Just few kilometers from Menton (France) is the Old Town of Ventimiglia (Italy)
Finally arrived in Fontan, the village where we used to live.
Of course, our dear friend Monsieur Antoine who proudly displays a photo of his youth taken in the 60s.
He is the young man standing next to the pony.
And this is the reason for our trip to Fontan. This white Peugeot car (hey, vintage is trendy now!) – stained by the elements after being left untouched like how you see it now – used to belong to me and was successfully sold to the monsieur on the right. A widower at 82, he also proudly tells me how, since his wife died 18 years ago, he never fails to put fresh flowers on his wife’s grave everyday without fail. He looks very fit, wearing his signature shorts whatever season of the year (the date is still Winter). And oh, he showed me the pendant he is wearing which has the engraved portrait of his wife. How sweet……