One more gorgeous day at Catherine's apartment right by Nice's airport which I was lucky enough to have it all at my disposal. Facing South and being airy made me more than happy. At night I had the fresh North Alpine wind to cool down the mild heat of the day and after sunrise it was time for the South wind coming from the sea. Every single day the same cycle. Amazing. Never too intense. Even wind had French manners. I make my breakfast and set off to enjoy the menu of the day: Cannes, Saint Tropez and other beauties in between.
I started (as usual) early enough to avoid the heat and traffic and this was the case for the next hour which helped me to cross Antibes (nice btw) without much drama. I make my first stop at Cannes where I had the chance to picture a top model:
This fine piece of Japanese engineering is so multitalented and trusty that someone with excessive biker audacity could caption this like "Cannes crowd to get pictured behind this Suzuki". Ι won't repeat all the positive surprises I had with this bike over the last 130.000km, I will just add this (which by the way is not the most impressive): Before leaving Greece I had the front brake pads close to the end and the chain unadjusted for the last 7000km. Finally I decided to leave both untouched and fix them when I come back. After 3200+km back home, they were all in the exact same shape. Even the chain - never tightened for the last 10000km. Axle drive who?
Cannes eager to get a picture with a Suzuki is gorgeous but the heat and traffic is not so I continue west. Soon I stop again cause the beach outside the city is really nice:
At this point, right behind me, there's a guy in his late 70s with a fancy race bicycle and a rear flat tire. As soon as I start thinking about helping him and also applying my latest discovery on fixing flat tube tires (using super glue) he pulls out the wheel, the tire and the tube in seconds and starts repairing. The whole scene looked so harmonically effortless like drinking water that I didn't want to spoil it. I love such guys...better not compare them with our spoiled state pensioners.
I head West and decide to leave the coastline to avoid traffic and explore the mountain as well. If only I knew how super wise this choice was. Soon I find my self driving on the DN7 and...how can I describe this...What do you expect from a route? Good tarmac? Nicely curved corners? Low to zero traffic? Dense forest? Options for gravel roads? Lakes? Streams? This one's got it ALL. If prison is driving there all day long I commit homicide in a heartbeat. Obviously I had to make a stop for some pictures (video at the end):
A few km later I see a sign about a lake directing to a gravel road. Couldn't skip this. After 2 km of gravel downhill I reach the end where I leave my iron horse to graze,
and after a few meters walking I see this masterpiece:
Sun was no helper for pictures but lake Avellan is a little gem. There it was me, a couple of souls and the silence. Amazing. (Video at the end).
I go up the gravel road again and continue South West on DN7. Same joy on this road till I reach Frejus and meet the heavy traffic again. There were parts of the coastal road that I was overtaking idle cars for many km. After a lot of heat and traffic I finally make it to Saint Tropez. The summer sun made these 2 euros I spent for that granite look like the best investment ever:
Funny to see these yachts chatting:
As usual, the only one with Greek numbers around:
On my way back to Nice, before Frejus, I found a race track for Monster Trucks. I never expected to see such a redneck thing in France. I was also quite lucky cause as soon as I stop for pictures one monster came out to park and show off to the people who drove by:
Of course the top model we mentioned at the beginning didn't say no:
All the above beauties plus a few more included in the video below:
The rest on the next...