We’re in Nîmes, the last destination of my Provence trip in September. I was not expecting much of this city and to tell you the truth I was already quite tired and saturated with all the impressions and images and all. The short trip was drawing to its end and actually I was quite ready to come back.
I went to Nîmes in my last day in France, thinking I would spend some time there before going to the Marseille airport in the evening to catch my early-early morning flight (I can now speak from my experience that the airport is safe to spend a night there, almost no people except for all the service people who were taking turns to disturb me from sleeping=).
And I did spend most of the day there and bought lots of (food) stuff you can never find in Russia – before finding out that there was some technical problem on the line and that lots of trains were super late. Which added a good pinch of nervousness to my hyper-balanced trip. And this is where my bag overloaded with the delicacies decided it was high time to get all ruined… so in the end I squeezed all my things into my rucksack and the rest of my hand luggage was literally HAND luggage :)
But when I was walking in the streets of Nîmes I was of course not aware of these upcoming events. It was a rather hot day in a big stone-stone-stone city with much more litter and dirt than the tiny Tarascon or Beaucaire. Moreover, I had a heavy rucksack filled with several jars of amazing confiture made by my dear host family at l’Oustau de Fanny et Marius (we have just finished one jar with a fruit I have never seen or tasted before – medlar. My favorite was the lemon confiture!). And in the morning I also bought David Gilmour’s new LP – just to add up some more weight to my shoulders :)
So I was getting tired quite easily and didn’t have a chance to see much of the city. From what I did see, I can say that there were much less corners of Nîmes that I liked than those I passed by without noticing. The city definitely lacks a nice refreshing river!
Now that I think of it, I guess Nîmes is just boring. And bleak. I think I took more photos of all its decorated doorways than of its antique amphitheatre (which after Orange did not impress me much; see the first photo of the post). Oh well, I guess I was just too full with those stone cities!
Opposite the Maison Carrée, which turns out to be the best preserved Roman temple on the ex-Roman empire territory (but looking somehow too new to impress you with its age – it has been recently renovated), was this luscious green:
But most of the Nîmes’ green was in this park which did not however escape from the same stone so characteristic of the cities in the South of France:
On top of the hill was yet another vestige of the old times, a half-ruined tower where I had my eat-it-all lunch. There was a view over the city too but the only thing I could think was actually going back-back-back. Tired.
Nîmes at noon:
- bookstore & postcards – bought some
- museum – nope
- local food – nope
- market – no
- old town – can’t say I liked it much though the park was nice
Once I figured out how to get to Marseille airport with all the trains being super late (or at least expected to be) and my bag in the trash bin, I said goodbye to the warm air coming from the sea and got my short sleep before the 2 flights. I flew back via Amsterdam – haven’t been to the Schiphol airport for ages! ‘Mind the step’ from all sides, free cookies and spice cakes, loads of people and endless terminals and gates. St Petersburg welcomed me with the autumnal air and a ruined rucksack (both from the airport luggage service and the precious honey which burst and spilled all over the contents). I was tired but felt inspired for a new trip which could be as ‘my cup of tea’ as this one was.