antibes . . . faisant mon chemin dans la vie quotidienne
Je crois que je reviens à Antibes pour voir, pour revoir, pour me détacher plus facilement. C’est en tout cas ce que je me suis dit jusqu’a aujourd’hui, le 20 janvier 2017 où les États-Unis a un nouveaux président.
Pour le moment j’invente que ce pays, la France, est devenu mon inspiration, que ce n’est pas mon histoire que je décris, que ce n’est pas pour essayer de retrouver le passé que je reviens, non, c’est plutôt pour comprendre comment je peux vivre une vie quotidienne différente à l’étranger.
I believe that I return to Antibes in order to experience, to rediscover, to free myself more easily. In any case, that is what I told myself until today, the 20th of January when the United States has a new president.
At the moment I imagine that France has become my inspiration, that it isn’t my story that I am describing, that it isn’t to try to locate the pass again that I return, but it is above all to understand how I can live a different life abroad.
Le Vieil Antibes is a favorite hangout. Do you want to find me between 10:00 and 12:00? You may chance an encounter here. I go to the tabac Le Balto next door and buy Le Monde, settle at Le Vieil Antibes, and wait for the server so I can order un déca and read the paper.
I pass Le Vieil Antibes and walk up the street to the Marché Provençal. Before I walk too far, I must window shop at the English bookstore. The new owner has made the store much more appealing by moving it to its present location and, frankly, tidying up the old store. It has a lovely garden area in the back.
Today is Friday and it is January. Friday does not mean much; but since it is January, few market stalls are open and few people shop. Saturday and Sunday will be much busier. (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)
Today I wanted cheese. The former cheese monger has been replaced by a younger couple with a more modern, varied selection of French cheeses. I might see some foreign cheese, such as parmesan or la mozzarella di bufala, but cheese from the United States, never. Jamais !
A favorite street in the maze near the market is la rue du Saint-Esprit where the restaurant Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit can be found. On each side of the entrance to the restaurant are two artfully designed doors. Like many other streets in Vieil Antibes, une passerelle crosses from on building to another. (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)
Can you spot the photographer? Across from Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit is an artisanal shop for painting. When I passed, a man was receiving instruction. Around the corner one can peek though a window into the back room and see some of the supplies. (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail.)
Hidden inside the ramparts in Vieil Antibes are many narrow, serpentine streets that lead to surprising places. Above the Marché Provençal is une petite place, a serene plaza where the noise from the outside is muffled.
On a small street behind me here I will eat lunch at L’Arazur, a small new restaurant that has taken over the space of the former restaurant Broc en Bouche. Three courses await me and two glasses of wine, white and red.