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on some moments in antibes during the covid-19 pandemic

Antibes, France is a small tourist town nestled between Cannes and Nice on the Côte d’Azure. One advantage is its size, but still the TGV–the bullet train–stops there. Good restaurants are plentiful. Three beaches are within easy walking distance from the business areas. And, the Mediterranean Sea and the Mediterranean climate make living easy.

Antibes has an old section, Vieil Antibes. It is small and easily explored within a couple of hours. Like most old villages dating back to the middle ages, the streets–les ruelles–resemble a maze with confusing twists and turn.

Picasso painted here, and left some of his works to Antibes after a promise that a museum would be established. Renoir, Cezanne, Matisse, and others found the light inspiring and returned often or like Renoir bought homes nearby and stayed longer.

I suppose, if one is to be confined somewhere for a long period of time, a small corner of paradise  should be good.

I am confined to my apartment; and as I have noted, I must carry l’attestation with me that explains why I am away from the apartment. Some friends and I agreed to meet in front of the Monoprix, a super market, on Place de Gaulle. For l’attestation, before leaving I must check the box:

« Déplacements pour effectuer des achats de fournitures nécessaires à l’activité professionnelle et des achats de première nécessité dans des établissements dont les activités demeurent autorisées (liste sur gouvernement.fr). »

In other words, it is understood that I am shopping for food at a state approved business.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

We were gathering, and one of five had not arrived. Four of us were standing, not in a group, that is not allowed, but in a group with approved one to two meters distance between us. Talking. Catching up on news. We were exposed, however, and a little nervous for it.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

A police car with four officers arrived and stopped. I wanted to go in the opposite direction. A friend walked away. Two other friends walked toward them.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

I called, “What are you doing?” The police car was between us and the Monoprix. I caught up with them. They explained that our attestations were for shopping. “Let’s go shopping.”

The police did not stop us and ask for our papers.. They went straight for the people sitting on benches. It was sunny that day, warm, comfortable. We shopped and covered our lists for couscous later in the week.

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