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Wednesday July 6, 2005

        I woke up at 11:00 and Marcia and I lazed around until 12:30 when we finally got up.  At 1:45 I went down to ask the girl at the desk (Sondrine) to help me get a phone message that came in earlier which I couldn't answer because it was in French.  The phone systems handling the answering machine part in French and it is impossible to operate unless you speak the language.  In Italy, Germany and the UK, they let you choose the language, but not here.

        The message was from Dr. Daniel Aron-Rosa (ophthalmologist from Paris who invented the YAG laser in the early 1980's) and she informed me she was no longer at her home in St. Tropez but had just flown back to Paris.  She had been waiting for us to arrive.  Another foul-up due to the computer fiasco delay in Italy.  She told me to call her daughter-in-law, Angie (who is an American from Southern California) at her house there and we could go for a swim.

        Just before I left, Paul (the artist waiter) came in and handed me the CD with his artwork.  I thanked Sondrine and at 2:00 I was on my run and made it all the way to St. Raphaël where I found a Bouygas Telecom store.  I bought two €75 top up cards and he installed them (again this is impossible in French).  When you buy the large value cards, they give you a lot of extra free time.  I now have €240.52 on the phone.  I placed a call to Angie (Aron-Rosa) but she told me she would have to call me back.  As I walked around I came across the church in St. Raphaël that the town is named after.  It is the one you can see in all the vista shots.  It was built in the 12th Century but looked very modern.

    

        I went by a camera store to see if I could get Canon software (which Clara did not send from home after the first computer died) but they didn't have it so I bought a DVD-RW for €5, since the new computer has a DVD burner on it.  I can backup and store photos on a DVD rather than a CD.  At 3:00 I stopped and had a cappuccino at Rhumerle Le Touring right on the corner where the beach curves seaward.  Since I was inside and it was rather hot and muggy, I didn't stay too long.

        I have been dying for a French crepe since we got here and decided now was the time to try one.  At 3:45 I sat down at Creperie du Dieux Port and ordered one with butter and  sugar since I wasn't in the mood for the other choices.  It was just so so.  The surprise was the €5 ($6)for that tiny little bottle of Perrier.

    

        I got back to the hotel and at 4:30, I took my computer across the street to work on diarios at Le Pagus again with a cappuccino.  When I asked for another one the girl thought I asked for a beer.  So I went ahead and had the beer she had poured.  While I was there Angie called back to tell me she was leaving for Italy tomorrow and would not be in St. Tropez - now its a perfect bust.  I was hoping to see Danielle's place.  I opened the CD with Peter's artwork and it is mostly that of women, rather scantily clad.  Several of them are a little over the top and I couldn't show here.  Some were good but I was not in the need to purchase any.  Here are a few examples:

     

        It was getting late so I went back to the room and changed and we headed out for dinner walking the same strand.  There must be 100 restaurants along here.  This time I felt like a little Italian and picked La Roma [132 Ave Cdt Guilbaud, +33-(0)4-94-190-190] and at 9:40 we had dinner.  We had Aqua minerale con gas split a bottle of Farnet Côtes de Provence.

   

        I had a pizza  margherita and then spaghetti bolognese....

 

...followed by an entree of "pavé d'Autruche sauce poivre"  (ostrich) [staussfilet in German and filleto di Stuzzo in Italian).  It was superbly cooked and ostrich has no cholesterol and almost no fat.

        Marcia had melon (plenty of it) and then pavé de Saumon grillé (grilled slamon).

     

        During dinner we met Serge Guerchon and Sabine who were sitting at the next table.  They are from Nice and they were just wonderful.  They drew a map and told us many places we should visit all over France.  It was a very pleasant encounter and a wonderful evening.  You'll here more about there recommendations later in the trip.

   

        The way you ask for your bill in Italy is to say "il Conto" but here in France you ask for l'addition [lah-dish-ee-own.]  We paid and left at 11:30 and on the walk back I gave in and bought a coffee gelato.  It was so bad I tossed it after a couple bites - this is not Italian gelato.

        We got back to the room and I spent time using the Canon Stitch program to combine panorama photos (like below) and got to bed at 3:15 AM.

        A little about Frèjus: It is a city of 52,000 but was 40,000 in the 1st Century when it was greatly expanded by Augustus Caesar.  It was decimated by the Saracens in the 10th Century.   They have a 25 mile Roman aqueduct to the Siagnole River and a 1st Century Roman  theatre.

KJH                                                                          Go To -> NEXT DIARIO #19 

Kenneth J. Hoffer, MD

KHofferMD@AOL.comRETURN TO INDEX

Fréjus, France

 011-33-66-602-3431 KJH

 011-33-66-892-7343 MH

Sent 7-25-05

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