Caviar dreams on a fishstick budget: Nice, French Riviera, April 11

One week and 190 euros later, I got my phone back!

Too bad it DOESN’T WORK.

I didn’t realize this until I was at the Barcelona airport headed to Nice. So I spent my entire first day in Nice talking to AT&T Wireless customer service via my laptop (bless you Google for inventing G-Phone though Gmail), only to conclude my phone was officially dead.

I was so mad at myself for wasting my first day here in my room, worrying about a phone.

But since my next destination is in the Italian mountains, I need a phone to navigate. So I shelled out another $200 and had my best friend overnight me a phone from San Diego (Thank you Bev, I love you.) Until then, it’s back to technology-less exploring!

NiceFranceI always love the oldest parts of a city the most.

That’s why I find Vielle Ville (Old Nice) so charming. It’s a winding maze of colorful houses, shops, churches and cafes. The hills are so steep in some places that the streets are actually stairs!

Oh my God is that a little old French man playing an accordion?!

Yes. Wow, that really happens here. I feel like I’m in a romance movie. I must’ve stood atop the Chateau de Nice viewpoint for hours on multiple days, just listening to him play. And tipping him so he wouldn’t leave 🙂

I love this city so much. It’s not at all like I imagined.

When I thought of Nice, I imagined rich people spending their winters in the South of France, soaking up the sun in the grand French Riviera, eating caviar and a drinking fancy wine I can’t pronounce.

And then all of a sudden I hear Robin Leach’s voice in my head like:

“Oh good, you’re here. The Beckhams need their pillows fluffed! And why aren’t you in uniform? Do you even speak English?”

Even in my dreams, I am mistaken for the help. FML.

And while Nice has its fair share of Jimmy Choo-wearing, Hermes bag-toting tourists, it’s not exclusively for the rich…

…well OBVIOUSLY, cause my unemployed ass is here.

I never feel like I’m compromising anything by not arriving with a purse full of euros. By venturing a bit from the main restaurant strips, you can get dinner and a ½ litre of wine without breaking the bank.

I bought groceries at Carrefour and eat breakfast at home every day. My AirBnB hosts work during the day and let me use their espresso maker, so I have proper French breakfast every morning for only the cost of groceries.

And the beach doesn’t cost a thing. I pack lunch to take to the beach – and a yoga mat because the beach is all rocks, no sand.

So I save my euros for dinner. And gelato. Must have gelato.

IMG_0735When I was in Paris with my friend Jaime in October, we would buy baguettes from the patisserie and pate and wine from Monoprix. Then we would find an empty bench in a park or across from the Eiffel tower and have a picnic….all for just a few euros.

Nevermind that it’s “technically” illegal to drink alcohol in the street – the machine gun-armed policemen seemed to have bigger problems to worry about. So drink away!

Living caviar dreams on a fish stick budget, BITCHES!

The thing is, anyone can do it. Affordable alternatives are everywhere if you put in the effort and do a little research.

And reading my blog doesn’t hurt either, obviously. Look at you, you are SO smart!



  1. Kiki · July 23, 2014

    You are so brilliant.

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