We got to Cannes but then found that we couldn’t get a berth in Nice or Monaco, in fact there wasn’t a berth for us in any marina on the French Riviera to the east of Cannes. In fact the only place we could find was San Remo, Italy, luckily also on our list of places to visit. So we had to re assess our plans to visit Nice and Monaco. Nice we did by train from Cannes and Monaco we plan to visit by train from San Remo.
So instead of going from Cannes to Nice, we went from Cannes to the Rade de Villefranche, just round the corner. In leaving Cannes we sailed passed the Ile de Marguerite, most famous for its fortress prison, the Fort Royal, in which the so-called Man in the Iron Mask was held in the 17th century, not the Chateau D’If in Marseille.
Arriving in the Rade de Villefranche we anchored opposite the marina we couldn’t get into. This was a very pleasant anchorage, sheltered and quiet and very picturesque. We were anchored in 6 metres of water and it was so clear you could see the sea bed with worrying clarity …. It looked far shallower! If we hadn’t been wanting to move along we’d have stayed another day just to chill!
Another worryingly clear sight was naked Germans. This isn’t an isolated sighting either, in almost every anchorage we have been to, we have observed that the crew of any yacht wearing a German ensign has a remarkably consistent lack of clothing; ‘naked German yachtsman’ is a phrase you could classify as a ‘tortology’, like saying ‘fatally dead’. But they do seem to have towels, but no deck chairs …
Mind you even in marinas we have seen some disturbing sights. In Toulon there was the guy on the boat across the jetty from us who didn’t appear to own any clothes other than his underpants …… and then, on Sunday, his underpants and a t shirt – he did have guests after all. It was only on the Sunday evening when he left his boat we realised he actually owned trousers. Or the guy in Cannes on the next yacht who I christened ‘Captain Underpants’ ….. always seemed to be wandering around his boat in the morning in the same pair of baggy grey ‘Y’ fronts. Honestly, it wouldn’t be so bad if they were ‘the beautiful people’, surely there are standards, this is the Cote d’Azur for goodness sake! But no, unfortunately these people are not Boat Bunnies, and obviously their boats don’t have the luxury of mirrors.
They say that if you have it flaunt it, well surely the unspoken flipside is if you haven’t, don’t.
Seriously, please, don’t.