We had two objectives today. The first was to visit Cannes; a town where I have spent a lot of happy times – mostly during an annual real estate fair called "MIPIM", which I have attended almost every year since it was established more than thirty years ago. Visiting Cannes each year for that, and enjoying wonderful food and drink with colleagues, clients and friends, led me to fall in love with the Côte d'Azur.
In turn that led me to bring the late Mrs P and our daughters here for family holidays. Mrs P II has therefore heard many stories and seen many photographs of Cannes, Mougins and the surrounding area and I was keen to show her the town.
Our second objective was to drive the coastal road - or corniche - from Cannes to Frejus via Saint-Raphael. It's the perfect road for a top-down drive in a sports car, with lots of winding turns and stunning views over the Mediterranean.
This afternoon it was almost as hot as yesterday, but more humid. I had tried to dress reasonably smartly for an anticipated dinner in town, but once out of Speranza's air conditioning, I was soon bedraggled. Shorts and a T-shirt would have been a wiser, more sensible bet. After a short orientation walk, we retired to a cafe for cold drinks and decided that Mrs P II should go about her business while I sought somewhere cool to pass the hours. I found a seat near a fan in Caffe Roma, a favourite meeting spot during MIPIM; today less crowded than I had ever seen it.
When she returned, we found a nearby restaurant to have our dinner and set out on our scenic drive. This got off to a bad start as we sat in a traffic jam trying to leave Cannes. As more of the day's tourists turned off at each junction however, it eased and we were on our way. It was as exhilarating as I remembered. We stopped at a parking spot to take a photo or two before pressing on to the end.
Then we returned more quickly and directly by the autoroute, pausing only to get some supplies from a supermarket.