Showing posts with label Côte d'Azur. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Côte d'Azur. Show all posts

Thursday, 1 October 2015


People on the Côte d'Azur generally don't expect anything else but glorious sunshine. When things are different they are very ill prepared. I never check the weather forecast; I carry an umbrella and a pair of sunglasses in my bag, what else can possibly happen here? Most people only carry a pair of sunglasses; it never rains, right? So it was no small surprise that cafe owners were again totally caught on the hop when the first storm of the autumn season hit. Work crews were busy, this morning on the beach salvaging decking, chairs and potted palm trees from the beach fronts.
I guess I'm not the only one that doesn't bother with the weather forcast. We repare the damage and promise ourselves we really should be better prepared (Yes these storms cause havoc every year!) but after a few weeks of glorious weather we have lulled ourselves back into a false sense of security; Its the south of France, what's the worst that can happen.
On other news:
I've not progresses much on my novel as with work, book promotion and a trip to Holland, I've not had the time to sit down and write. The promotion on the other hand went well. I had a free book offer on Language in the Blood and used the site:
I've given away an impressive 771 books in two days and having a number of sales and KU borrows too in the days that followed. As it was a free book, the advert might not pay entirely for itself, but it will be interesting to see the next two weeks if it was worth it.
Both the language in the blood books are now also available in paperback via Amazon and createspace(There is even a distributor offering a second hand copy? How? I haven't even received my copies yet!)
Language in the blood, second hand!!! on Amazon
More news:
The Anthologie I'm part of; Holes, has been made available to download for free on Smashwords:
Holes, the anthology
You don't need any devises and can just download as a pdf on your computer. Its a great collection of dark stories with Holes as a central theme.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

The weather

Unlike when I worked in the UK, my colleagues and I spend little time discussing the weather. Mostly it just to say 'il fait beau dehors, profite bien!' (it is nice outside, make the most of it!) to the fellow worker finishing his or her shift. With 211 sunny days a year we are blessed with an exceptional climate, so visitors were a bit surprised when they experienced some rather heavy rains, strong winds and thunderstorms last Tuesday. When things are bad here, they can be really bad and chaos ensued. Cancelled or diverted flights, mudslides, a river bursting it banks and traffic at a gridlock.

We often say that we have so many good days as all the months rain is received in one massive downpour.

The beach here in Cros de Cagnes is an artificial pebble one. They build a wide promenade between the water and the old fishing village and most of the sand beach was taken up by the road. Every spring a few lorries bring some more pebbles to repair the beach. Autumn waves and storms all do their best to erase the small strip of land. Last years storm was spectacular and I've writen about it in my short story 'the wee baldy man, published in the e-bundle 'Something Short'

High waves picked up the pebbles and threw them over the promenade, leaving a trail of destruction all along the coast. So yes, we don't talk about the weather very often, but when we do, it's the topic of conversation for many days.

Monday, 7 April 2014


Being white, blonde haired and blue eyed, I've never expected to be on the receiving end of racism. I've sometimes heard mutterings and sighs behind me along the lines off: 'them English' but this week I had a lady very coldly asking me whether only foreigners worked here. I was dumbstruck as my Moroccan colleague and I had bend over backwards to help her with her purchases. If I feel racism, I can only imagine how bad things are for my friends and colleagues who are not white.

This leads me back to my previous blog I did on voting. I did only get to vote once and will have to wait for that free pizza a few years longer as the sitting Mayor got re-elected in the first round with 52%. I nearly bumped into Marine le Pen at Nice airport a few days before the election. Visiting the area to rally her Front National party must have paid off as they did alarmingly well in the south, polling 25% in our village.

The Côte d'Azur is a very overcrowded stretch of land; every one wants to come and live in this beautiful area that benefits from one of the best climates in Europe. With the foreign tourists come the workers that can deal with them. French is not an easy language to master and the passengers I meet on a daily basis are just relieved when I speak to them in their mother tongue and a happy passenger is one that spends; pumping lots of Euro's back into the economy. I find living and working amongst these many nationalities and cultures hugely inspiring, but sadly not every one is of this opinion.

So how do I deal with Mrs I don't like foreigners? Well I got myself registered to vote. Meanwhile I try and lead by example, treating every one with respect and courteousness. I gave her my 'I don't get what you just said there' smile and wished her a 'Bon voyage madame!'