(Sent from Perpignan) Nice 7/21 After going as far east as Aix I decided I needed to go 150 miles farther east and see the French Riviera. The Alps have no Piedmont here and come crashing into the Mediterranean. Scenery on the drive is as spectacular as American Southwest -- reminds me of it since it's so arid. Now in July the big names -- Cannes and Nice are crowded with the rich and college kids. Hotel density makes Miami Beach look sparse by comparison. At least one nearby town -- Villefrainche is not so crowded and is gorgeous.

The French love dogs. They carry them in their purses and feed them water in restaurants. City folk have little or tiny dogs -- poodles and terriers. While these pets no doubt contribute to the mental health of their owners, it does make walking, not to mention running, a challenge. But France isn't a place for the easily offended to visit. Bullfights, beaches topless everywhere and nude in places, stinky cheeses, everyone smokes, 'alouettes sans tetes' on menus, no seatbelt or helmit laws would make our easily-offended politically correct American souls just die.