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Corsica day 4 – About the Neighbours

This morning I woke up a bit earlier, so getting into bed a bit earlier might have worked well. And I wasn’t that tired either. And although I had said my mom she should be getting the croissants and pain au chocolat, I decided to go and get them just because I felt like it. And what a surprise, while queuing up I saw the last box of pains going in, and by the time I get there I got the 2 last ones!
So I happily ran back and put them on the table, and then wanted to run off again to play, but my mom said I should wait a bit and stay at our place as she wanted to get something. While she was away I got asked by the neighbours if I wanted to walk along to the entrance again to and when my mom got back I immediately ran after them. I got to meet other dutch kids which were nice and when I came back I ate something quickly, ready to run off again and play. However my mom held me for a moment and let me try the stuff we bought yesterday; Creme de Chatagne (chestnut cream), Gelee de Myrte (Myrte-berry-gelly), Confiture de Clementine Corse (clementine-jam (small oranges)) and Confiture de Figues et Noisettes (fig and nuts jam). I really liked them a lot, as they were very very sweet. They almost tasted like honey.
I then took off to play again, volleybal this time, and when I returned I took my corsican tennisrackets with me, after that I swapped to football again. When I came back to swap shoes the neighbour caught my eyes. He was wearing a bro. A man’s bra, for moobs. I stared at it with big eyes and told my mom that the dad of the dutch boy I’ve been playing with was wearing a bro. She could not stop laughing and explained me that it was a heartrhythm measurement tool. She was still giggling after I walked off, she jumped in the swing and I played with the kids from the camping again.
My mom got the area where our tent was cleaned in the meanwhile, as well as some neighbours went and some new ones came. The young dutchies next to us disappeared and a french mom with her 16y old appeared. They were funny and able to set up their tent inside out. So they had to ask the other neighbours to help them out. I told my mom I wanted to play again and she said she wanted to go shopping, so I said I wanted to have Moules Marinieres. But first my mom said she needed some sleep to recover and so she did.
When I came back the 3rd time to get something to drink she was out and a while later she was awaiting me on the soccerfield. She had the moules almost ready and I was completely excited. She showed me what was in there: Rose, water, 3/4 onion and 2 cloves of garlic. She wondered if it would taste ok because she didn’t put any herbs in it. She said she had been desperately looking for the local ‘maquis’ as herbs, but couldn’t find it. So we just had to eat the moules like they were. And I’ll tell you, they were lovely, fresh, and so much better than the ones we had at the restaurant on Sunday! They were fresh, like they were just out of the sea and no additional taste of anything at all. The other creatures which liked it as much were the wasps, and I had some real big problems with them. The more I waved my arms the more they came to my plate. But then my mom said to tell them mentally that they had a bucket with old moules to feed on next to the table and when I would relax more they would go there as well. At first I didn’t believe her but when I did calm down they indeed went there. Unless I threw a shell at them, then they would come to my plate immediately. It was weird, but it worked.
After food I said I wanted to go play again, but my mom asked if we should do the dishes beforehand. I refused and said I would do them later, but then my mom asked if that would be ‘later’ similar like today, where I complained I shouldn’t have done them ‘later’. I quickly changed my mind because doing the dishes with dried out leftovers of food isn’t fun at all and it takes a lot longer. So we did the dishes together and then I went to play football again. I hope I can play with Kevin again, a little boy with white shorts who can play really well, but I can’t understand a word of what he’s saying. But still, he’s more they would go there as well. At first I didn’t believe her but when I did calm down they indeed went there. Unless I threw a shell at them, then they would come to my plate immediately. It was weird, but it worked.
After food I said I wanted to go play again, but my mom asked if we should do the dishes beforehand. I refused and said I would do them later, but then my mom asked if that would be ‘later’ similar like today, where I complained I shouldn’t have done them ‘later’. I quickly changed my mind because doing the dishes with dried out leftovers of food isn’t fun at all and it takes a lot longer. So we did the dishes together and then I went to play football again. I hope I can play with Kevin again, a little boy with white shorts who can play really well, but I can’t understand a word of what he’s saying. But still, he’s sweet.
Only when it got dark I returned to the tent and I read some of what my mom wrote, after that I went off to the toilets and get ready to sleep. At first I didn’t want to, but then I realized it was better anyway. My mom asked if I thought she was evil, but no, I said she tries everything to make me happy. And that includes making failures and learning from them. So I’ll go to bed early (like if 22:00 is early) and then wake up without being tired, maybe read some. There is so much more that we can do again tomorrow!


Corsica day 3 – The Cable Connection

What a long sleep that was this morning, the wind woke us up as well as the people around us, in every language they had their morning ritual. It was late and I was still so sleepy, Tonight I don’t want to go to bed any later than 9h. So as my mom prepared breakfast I went out to fetch the pain au chocolat and the croissants, as I was really hungry. But after the walk to the reception, they were out of pain and croissants. So I walked the whole way back saying they didn’t had any pain au chocolat and croissants. Then my mom asked me again if I was hungry and what else there was to eat. Well, uhm, I went back to get ourselves a flute. We had the saucage from yesterday evening to go with it, and not only we liked it a lot but the wasps as well.
After breakfast we cleaned up everything, my mom did the tent and prepared for the beach and I went off to the cleaning area of the camping, After we were ready my mom was looking at the power supplies again and what power we needed, and other groceries as well, so we went to the Casino first, a giant super market nearby. What wasn’t that giant was the parking places that were around it and people were fighting to get a place. So my mom squeezed somewhere backwards in a little gap and we could go inside the airconditioned waspnest filled with loud french people, now figthing to get something to eat.
The supermarkets’ entrance was filled with local foods, lots of wine, saucages, cheese and cookies. But once we were a bit further we could find the same but for a bit better price. It smelled delicious and we got some pate de canard (duck liver mousse), cheese from goat milk and the local beer. A bit further was the camping area but no sign of the cableadapter we needed, so we strolled further through the supermarket. Lots of nice foods which brought a lot of good old memories, and then there was the fresh fish bit, which was sooo lovely. I wanted to have the crevettes (shrimps) and the moules (mussles), but as we had no power nor cooling nor additional cooking plate yet we couldn’t take them. My mom promised me though we would get it either tomorrow or the day after.
After this super market we had to wait until the bricolage was open, this is where we most likely ould get our power adapter. So my mom took a d-tour around the area uphill and we got stuck 2 times in a row trying to get over the offroad bits. It looked OK on the maps though. So we returned downhill into Calvi to find another supermarket, the Super-U this time.
This was a bit more expensive for some bits, but a lot bigger and unfortunately no fresh fish department, but big enough to search for the adapter in the electricity area. But also here it wasn’t there. My mom asked the personell who asked another woman, but they thought my mom was a bit silly as she kept on saying she needed an adapter for 3 male to 2 female, and no, she didn’t come from the UK nor the USA. The people recommended to go to another store as well, but then, after strolling through the camping area my mom found it. We got some more sirops and breakfast stuff and a bread and then we ran into the woman again who said we were a bit strange. Now she completely understood what it was and she gave my mom a pat on the back :)
So, now time for our well deserved beach afternoon. But then, we were both hungry, but not hungry enough to eat something warm. So my mom made the bread with mousse de canard and the tomme de chevre as well as some saucisse d’ane and took the kiwis in a box. Completely packed we looked at each other.. and then decided to take the car to the beach and park there. We were still so tired and it had nothing to do with lazyness. We had to adjust to the rhythm here and the warmth, the being outside all the time as well as having nothing to do with time.
We got our bodyboard, flippers, snorkel, towels and tent as well as drinks and our food in the car and drove off to park at the parking place near the beach. As soon as we touched the beach at a nice place I was off in the water, first with bodyboard, then with snorkel and bodyboard and then with flippers as there were so many waves. I kind of tried to ignore my mom saying we had to eat something. I was just too excited trying to catch all those fish which were around me. But then my mom caught me and I swallowed the bread with the mousse the canard, it was so lovely! After I ate that I was off in the water again, with either bodyboard, glasses and/or flippers. And after a while I decided to go back to the beach as I thought my mom was looking for me. I had been in the water for over an hour. My mom said that she recognized that and said it was fine, I just had to be careful for the wind.
A while later my mom came swimming to me while I was at a water-playground with huge blow-up figures to jump from. I had some fun with my mom and then I gave her the bodyboard where I swam back to the beach again. My mom swam to the nearest pion in the water which was the border for the speedboats with banana’s and floating seats behind them. When we met each other again I was really really cold but as my mom tidied up the red tent as it was almost blown away by the wind I couldn’t find it anymore. My mo said that she had seen some white patches at the mountains behind us, but if this is snow or not she couldn’t say.
After I had dried and warmed up a bit we went back to the camping as my mom said she didn’t like the dark clouds arriving at the horizon and slowly covering the sun. Also the wind was a lot stronger than the day before and we had to look at securing our tent a bit more. We did so when we were back, and after that we got our Casserole to eat, beans with all kinds of meat and saucages, with the fresh bread from the afternoon. We agreed to wash the dishes together, but then I saw kids playing football at the sports field nearby, so I ran off. I had a great evening playing with friends speaking all languages, and at 9 I heard my mom. I didn’t want to come back yet as I wasn’t tired at all, but my mom insisted, so after I stretched it a bit I dropped on my pillow and was off within minutes. The wind was increasing again and it finally cooled down. The neighbours were funny, the german family with one daughter who was way to old to go on holiday with her parents were having a rant at eachother, the dutchies were talking to their little kids like everything was small, the french kids were running around like it still was afternoon. Tomorrow is another beach day, and we will be eating Moules or Crevettes in the evening, with garlic and a lot of yum food! But first: beach, and the 3 icecreams my mom promised me!

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Corsica day 2 – Fishy fishes

It wasn’t even 7 in the morning and we had to rush out. My mom woke up, even without coffee she managed to pack all the stuff and get ready go to downstairs, towards the car. There was already a bright light at the end so the doors were already open. It went all so quick. And we had my beloved “Corsica Ferries 2014″ sticker on the car! We drove from the Ferry onto the land over a small strip and everything was just right. On the other side cars were piling to get onto the ferry again. It looked a lot more unorganized as in Nice. There were amazing buildings and rocks on mountains around us and I’ve snapped some pictures while my mom was trying to evade the locals. At least, that’s what she called the car from Wiesbaden behind us. In front of us a Citroen Mehari which my mom said was the most ideal 4×4 “car” to drive to the french beaches. It looked very funny and square and it nearly fell over in the curves because there were 5 people in it.
We dunked into a camping place which looked very neat and as we were so early we had to wait till 08:30 untl we could register. So we had our Pain au Chocolat and a croissant as well, after that a baguette. Once we registered to see if there was going to be a place for us, we got told we could return at 12 so we could get a place. And then… we went to the beach! If I wasn’t that tired I would have run there! There was a train going by the beach as well, just next to it, and it sounded like a bus. After a bit walking we found a place with nice sand and a good view on the Citadel of Calvi. I grabbed my board and was out in the blue in a split second, after having setup our beach tent. Wow! More than clear water and fish everywhere! We swam to a little island which was in front of the beach and I saw more fish and very nice seasnails. Just before 12 we went back to the camping and we got driven by someone on an electric scooter to our place. The camping was huge and nice and so is our place. We discussed where the tent could go and built it up together, then my mom put up the swinging chair in the tree with my help and put the beachtent on as well, so you could lay in there and read. Then my mom cooked noodles and I was too tired to do much more than reading. And so my mom was. But she said that tonight we would be going to the beach again, as it was sunday everything was closed anyway. My mom took a nap and I read my book and played nintendo.
After a while my mom woke up and we packed our stuff to get the tent full and the car empty. We took off to Calvi and had a tour around the village and the centre, to see where we could do our shopping, where the beaches were, the parking places and where we could eat some. We then drove all the way up to the Citadel de Calvi to turn around and go back to a parking place near the beach.
We did not have to walk much to reach the boulevard, we were looking for a fishy restaurant. What we both meant was that we could eat fresh fish over there, but afterwards it seems it was a bit fishy as well. The 16,80 EU menu seemed to be nice, bouillabaise (Soupe de Poisson de la maison) and then Moules Marinieres as main dish, followed by a desert. The soup was not warm, the bread was too often toasted and there was this nice taste missing. The roux was well though, as it contained garlic. But the chips served with it were like they were a day old. Then the main meal, we weren’t that sure why the onions tasted that sour, but when we got to the ‘wine’ that was supposed to cook the mussles in, it almost tasted like vinegar. So quickly off to the desert, where we had the choice between carpaccio of ananas and Pana Cota de Castagne, basically thick creamy pudding of chesnuts. And we took the last one and had no regret this time! What yummy that was! A very fast restaurant but unfortunately too well prepared in advance that nothing tastes like it had some love from the cook, nor that it is fresh. Even for that price we both expected a bit better. The best thing was that one of the waiters looked like Woody Allen, and another person looked like a person we both knew, so we could compare and giggle a bit.

We payed quickly and then left to visit the harbor and the citadel. That last one was a bit higher and further than we thought so by the time we were on top it smelled funny and all I could say was “I want to go back, I’m tired”. So we continued until the road went down again, which was a lot shorter than all the stairs we took at the start. From there on we went through a little village which was full of people and shops and light, and there were all kinds of smells, also we could peak at the tables what the people were eating. That looked absolutely lovely so we know where to go next time. A bit further we saw a lot of cool t-shirts, about Corse but about Calvi as well. And then our noses were pulled into a shop where it smelled like saucages, absolutely lovely. I asked the woman to give me a saucage and she asked me if I wanted to taste it first- which I didn’t regret. I got even 2 pieces! After this we walked back and although I was promised an icecream, we didn’t see any further ice cream shops after the first ones of this little road. So I’ll get two tomorrow.
The walk back to the parking lot was very tiresome and I was so glad we were going back. But then, the camping was so big that we could not find our way back. So we had to reverse a few times to finally find our tent, and all I did then was .. sleep. Tomorrow is another day!

Corsica day 1 – It’s about really wanting what you want.

I can’t remember how early it was or what time I got out of bed or went in bed, I do remember that I was tired. Just very tired. My mom had prepared everything the night before, so the whole house which was filled with “stuff to take with us” was gone and in the car when I woke up.
Somehow I managed my breakfast and to get the last bits I wanted to take with me in the car, including myself. Not much later when the sun came over the hills we were on our way, including having to make a d-tour to get out of our village. Everything was covered with a thin layer of haziness around us which made the light very nice. But the speedy trip down south didn’t take long. Not even 45 minutes later we had to stand stil because of an accident. My mom decided to take the exit we were standing next to and we could evade the complete standstill completely.
We made a pitstop to get the swiss Autobahnvignette and something to drink and just before 10 we were over the border near Basel already. The initial plan was to take the St. Gotthardtunnel, but with the increasing waiting time, till up to 3 hours my mom decided quickly to follow the other route, which went over San Bernadino. And then the weather became bad. Really bad. A lot of rain and very foggy so we couldn’t see much of the hills and mountains. However, we got to see some of my favorite cars, a Porsche Grand GT, but it didn’t really go very fast. A few tunnels later we heard a lot of noise and it seemed a Subaru WRX Impreza was racing against a Mitshubishi Evo and also some Mercedes AMK was trying to join in. It was a lot of noise in the tunnel though.
While going down Switzerland we took the “D-tour” close to Liechtenstein via Chur and got stuck in a few traffic jams. But it still was rolling faster than the queue near the Gotthard tunnel. As also the Gotthard pass was half closed my mom thought it would be going faster, despite having to drive longer.
We then got onto the road down south east again, towards Lugano, and we were driving through a lot of tunnels. The funny thing with the navigation system was that it thought the road was going over the hills, so we could see some of the routing lines from the bottom while going “up” a hill. That way we could see how steep the hills were and how high. It made me kind of dizzy though.
The furhther we came into the alps the more wet and cold it got. A few times the car was covered in damp, but then on the outside. The temperature outside dropped to 11 degrees. The little blue wild stream next to us was the rhine river, that amazed me when my mom told me.
More patches of white were visible on the mountains next to us and sometimes even a small waterfall. We were going “over” the highest peak at 14:30 after we had a small break with some local cheese.
Then we went into a longer tunnel this time, and from there on we only went down, through much more tunnels and over a few bridges even. We were above the clouds and it was still very wet, but it turned lighter. And there were so many waterfalls, very big ones even
The houses and churches and even castles looked very different here, also the river was going into a different direction. Not going north but flowing south.
While going further down south my mom quickly checked the route near Milan and it seemed greener than before, and faster as well. So we followed an Audi RS5 and an Audi TT over the Audistrada towards Italy until the border and the first payment stop.
The temperature got higher and the clouds slowly disappeared, and the country was really flat and really green, and to my surprise the Autobahn was almost empty. My mom however mumbled something about the italians and how they randomly switch lanes or even tend to drive over 2 at the same time for a while. And then I saw a Ferarri – doing exactly that what my mom said. With the indicator to the left it swirled over 3 lanes to take the 4th which went to the right. I asked my mom what the indicator was for, if he could speed up more like that. My mom didn’t know so she also put the left indicator on to see what effect it had. And then the Ferrari in front of us tried to move to the right lane, but had problems steering properly so we could not overtake. He had still his left indicator on when he found the straight Autostrada again and quickly disappeared.
We also were on our way pretty quick: I could not believe how quickly the map disappeared below us and how fast the sea was approaching. At 18h we already saw the first glimpse and when we went towards the French direction, we saw the wrecked Costa Concordia as a gigantic white brick being towed to Genova. My mom was completely excited about that, as she explained afterwards she’s been watching this ship on the Giglio webcam daily and even saw it falling over slowly when it all happened, and now shes seen the ship for real. But we moved on, France was waiting!
And 2 hours later and a *lot* of tunnels on the Ventimiglia we crossed the border. The first stop we made was near Eze, and while we were gazing over the Mediterranean Sea my mom said loud “look there!” and aimed at the road. A Bugatti Veyron drove by with the sound of rocks being crunched. That GT in front of us was absolutely nothing compared to that. Strangely the weather turned grey again and it started to rain. But when we came in Nice at 20h everything was clear and sunny again and the sun was about to go down.
There were road signs about the Corsica Ferries going at 21h and then I said “Mom, how about we go with the Ferry today instead of tomorrow?”. That would save us from searching a camping and we would have somewhere to sleep while we were going to cross the sea. So after initially asking the harbor security if this was possible, we were queuing up to change our tickets. I was so excited and so was my mom, she was very proud of me and said that that was an excellent idea.
After we rebooked the ticket we searched for something to eat, and in the little restaurant with the “Pain a Porter” we got the owner to make a very special bread which was not on the list: A Pan Bagnat with fresh salad, tomatoes, mayo, eggs, anchois, tuna and a bit more. It was very tasty and only then I figured out I was hungry. But the Bouillaise and Moules Frites were having to wait a bit longer
We sat down at the harbor and enjoyed the big ferry already unloading cars, the lights of Nice and the little pilot boats going out and in.
Just after 23:30 a big, no, more a huge christmastree quickly entered the harbor. The Mega Smeralda came rushing in backwards to unload the passengers and cars, and not much later we were directed into the ship. One man scared the hell out of me, as he didn’t see a sticker on our car, he smashed one on the windscreen and I was really awake again.
Once in the ship we quickly rushed to the restaurant for sleeping places but all were already taken, so we went back to the deck to get a view of the harbor we were leaving already and then to the bar to drink something. After that my mom walked towards a window in the corner, shoveled the seats away and made us a little covered place to sleep.