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I should have used hyphens?) enables you to walk five miles punctuating
every step with a new exclamation of delight.

Only we did not walk. Joseph-Marie, who would have been Giuseppe-Maria
at Nice, stopped to look over the Artist's shoulder and incidentally to
suggest that we might have cigarettes. A veteran of two years at
twenty, his empty left sleeve told why he was _reformé_. Glad to get
out of the mess so easily, he explained to us laconically; and now he
was eking out his pension by driving a cart for the Vallauris pottery.
The express train "burned" (as he put it) the pottery station, and he
had come to put on _grande vitesse_ parcels at Antibes. Cannes was a
hopeless place for the potters: baskets of flowers always took
precedence there over dishes and jugs. The Artist believed that
Joseph-Marie's horse could take us around the cape with less effects
from the heat than we should suffer, and that for ten francs
Joseph-Marie could submit to his boss's wrath or invent a story of
unavoidable delay. I agreed. So did Joseph-Marie. If we proved too
much heavier than pottery, we would take turns walking. At any rate,
the Artist's kit had found a porter.

We took the Boulevard du Cap to Les Nielles, were lucky in finding the
garden of the Villa Thuret open, and then let our horse climb up the
Boulevard Notre-Dame to the lighthouse on top of La Garoupe, as the
peninsula's hill is called. Here the Riviera coast can be seen in both
directions. The view is not as extended as that of Cap Roux, for
Cannes is shut off by the Cap de la Croisette. But in compensation you
have Nice and the hill towns of the Var, and while lacking the clear
detail of Cap Ferrat and Cap Martin you get the background of the
Maritime Alps which is not visible east of Nice. And the Iles de
Lérins look so different from their usual aspect as sentinels to Cannes
that it is hard to believe they are the same islands. Near the
lighthouse and semaphore a paved path, marked with the stations of the
cross, leads to a chapel.

The Villa Thuret is the property of the state, and is used as a
botanical nursery for the Jardin des Plantes at Paris. In variety,
however, it does not rival the Giardino Hanbury near Menton, and in
beauty it is surpassed by the private garden of Villa Eilenroc, near
the end of the Cap d'Antibes. These two gardens, the most remarkable
of the Riviera, were made by Englishmen who preferred the sun and
warmth of the Riviera to their native land. The most wonderful garden
on Cap Ferrat is the creation of an American. Cannes was "made" by
Lord Brougham. The other important estate of the Cap d'Antibes,
Château de la Garoupe, is the property of an Englishman. As at
Arcachon and Biarritz and Pau, as at Aix-les-Bains, Anglo-Saxon
ownership of villas and German ownership of hotels and the prevalence
of Teutons as shopkeepers and waiters prove the passion of men of the
north for lands of the south.

Twenty years ago, just after Fashoda, there was a strong current of
uneasiness among British residents on the Riviera. The experiences of
civilians caught by Napoleon and kept prisoners for years had passed
into English history and literature. British consuls were surprised to
find that thousands of their compatriots, of whom they had had no
previous knowledge, were living all the year round on the Riviera.
These people came to make inquiry about what would be done to them if
France did declare war suddenly against Great Britain. Would they be
given time to leave the country? Fifteen years later the calamity of a
sudden interruption of a peaceful existence, basking in the sun, did
fall upon foreigners, but statesmen had shuffled the cards around, and
this time the civilians caught in the net were Germans and Austrians.
The Napoleonic principle still held. Italy could be seen with the
naked eye. But none were allowed to pass out. Tourists and residents,
subjects of the Central Powers, were arrested and imprisoned on the
Iles de Lérins, where they remained five years, many of them in sight
of their villas on the coast and the hotels they had built and managed.
They stayed longer than Marshal Bazaine, who managed to escape, but not
as long as the mysterious Man with the Iron Mask.

One of the keepers at the Antibes lighthouse had been an auxiliary
soldier in the fort of Sainte-Marguerite during the early years of the
war. He told us that some of the trapped tourists were very restive,
but that most of the German civilians who were residents of the Riviera
were far from being discontented with their lot. Better a prison on
the Ile Sainte-Marguerite than exile from the Riviera! This was better
taste and wiser philosophy than we expected of Germans. One could go
far and fare worse than an enforced sojourn on one of the loveliest
islands of the Mediterranean, whose pine forests are reminiscent of
Prinkipo. From 1914 to 1919 life was much harsher beyond those Alps.

Saint-Honorat, the smaller island half a mile from Sainte-Marguerite,
was a monastic establishment from the fourth century to the French
Revolution. It passed into ecclesiastical hands again in the Second
Empire and became a Cistercian monastery. Although the restoration was
accomplished with distressing thoroughness forty years ago, some parts
of the chapel date back to the seventh century, and a huge double
donjon - the dominating feature of the island from the coast - remains
from the twelfth-century fortifications. A road, on which are ruins of
four medieval chapels, runs round the island. We were unable to visit
Sainte-Marguerite and on Saint-Honorat pencil and paper had to be kept
out of sight. But I must not wander to another day.

Joseph-Marie liked our tobacco and the horse did not mind stopping en
route. It was six o'clock when we reached Juan-les-Pins, only a mile
from Antibes on the other side of the cape. Two miles farther along
the coast, at Golfe-Juan, where the road turns in to Vallauris, we
climbed down from the cart, brushed much dust from our clothes, and
started home along the coast road to Cannes. Joseph-Marie waved his
empty sleeve in farewell, happy in our promise to look him up some day
in Vallauris with a pocketful of cigarettes.




CHAPTER XI

CANNES

Of one-half of Tarascon the prince whom Tartarin met in Algiers
displayed an astonishingly detailed knowledge. Concerning the rest of
the town he was as astonishingly noncommittal. When it leaked out that
the prince had been in the Tarascon jail long enough to become familiar
with what could be seen from one window, Tartarin understood his
limitation. My picture of Cannes is as indelible as the prince's
picture of Tarascon. For most of my Riviera days were spent in a villa
across the Golfe de la Napoule from Cannes. Not infrequently our baby
Hope gave us the privilege of seeing Cannes by sunrise. We ate and
worked on a terrace below our bedroom windows. Every evening we
watched Cannes disappear or become fairyland in the moonlight.

What we saw from the Villa Étoile was the Golfe de la Napoule from the
Pointe de l'Esquillon to the Cap de la Croisette. The Corniche de
l'Estérel rounded the Esquillon and came down to sea level at Théoule
through a forest of pines. It passed our villa. The curve of the gulf
between us and Cannes was only seven miles. First came La Napoule,
above whose old tower on the sea rose a hill crowned with the ruins of
a chapel. A viaduct with narrow arches carried the railway across the
last ravine of the Estérel. In the plain, between two little rivers,
the Siagne and the Riou, was a grove of umbrella pines. Here began the
Boulevard Jean Hibert, protected by a sea-wall in concrete, leading
into Cannes. The town of Cannes, flanked on the left by Mont Chevalier
and on the right by La Croisette, displayed a solid mass of hotels on
the water front. Red-roofed villas climbed to Le Cannet and La
Californie, elbowing each other in the town and scattering in the
suburbs until the upper villas were almost lost in foliage. Behind
were the Maritime Alps. Not far beyond La Croisette, the Cap d'Antibes
jutted out into the sea. At night the lighthouses of Cannes and
Antibes flashed alternately red and green, and between them Cannes
sparkled. Inland to the left of Cannes were Mougins on a hill and
Grasse above on the mountain side. Occasional trails of smoke marked
the main line of the railway along the coast and the branch line from
Cannes to Grasse. In the sea lay the Iles de Lérins, Sainte-Marguerite
almost touching the point of La Croisette.

[Illustration: "La Napoule, above whose tower on the sea rose a hill
crowned with the ruins of a chapel. Behind were the Maritime Alps."]

But unlike the Prince, we did have a chance to see Cannes at other
angles. Cannes was the metropolis to which we went hopefully to hire
cooks, find amusement, and buy food and drink. Théoule had neither
stores nor cafés, and after the Artist came we were glad to vary the
monotony of suburban life. It is always that way with city folk. How
wonderful the quiet, how delightful the seclusion of the "real
country"! But after a few weeks, while you may hate yourself for
wanting noise and lights, while you may still affect to despise the
herding instinct, you find yourself quite willing to commune with
nature a little less intimately than in the first enthusiastic days of
your escape from the whirl and the turmoil of your accustomed
atmosphere. Not that Cannes is ever exactly "whirl and turmoil;" but
you could have tea at Rumpelmayer's, you could dance and listen to
music and see shows at the Casino, and you could look in shop windows.
On the terrace of the Villa Étoile we thanked God that we were out in
the country, and we loved our walks on the Corniche road and back into
the Estérel. But it was a comfort to have Cannes so near! We were not
dependent upon the twice-a-day _omnibus_ train, which made all the
stops between Marseilles and Nice. An hour and a half of brisker
walking than one would have cared to indulge in farther east on the
Riviera took us to Cannes, and the _cochers_ were always reasonable
about driving out to Théoule in the evening.

From our villa to La Napoule we were still in the Estérel. Then we
crossed the mouth of the Siagne by a bridge, and came down to the sea
on the Boulevard Jean Hibert. Between the mouth of the Siagne and Mont
Chevalier are the original villas of Cannes and the hotels of the
Second Empire. Here Lord Brougham built the Villa Eleonore Louise in
1834, when Cannes was a fishing village, not better known than any
other hamlet along the coast. Here are the Château Vallombrosa (now
the Hôtel du Pare), the Villa Larochefoucauld and the Villa Rothschild,
whose unrivaled gardens are shut off by high walls and shrubbery. They
are well worth a visit: but you must know when and how to get into
them. As you near Mont Chevalier, the sea wall, no longer needed to
protect the railway (which for a couple of miles had to run right on
the sea to avoid the grounds and villas laid out before it was dreamed
of), recedes for a few hundred feet and leaves a beach.

On Mont Chevalier is the Old Town, grouped around a ruined castle and
an eleventh-century tower. The parish church is of the thirteenth
century. The buildings on the quay below, facing the port, are of the
middle of the nineteenth century. But they look much older. For they
were built by townspeople, and serve the needs of the small portion of
the population which would be living in Cannes if it were not a
fashionable watering place. Despite its marvelous growth, Nice has
always maintained a life and industries apart from tourists and
residents of the leisure class. Cannes, on the other hand, with the
exception of the little Quartier du Suquet, is a watering place. It
needs Mont Chevalier, as Monte Carlo needs Monaco, to make us realize
that Cannes existed before this spot was taken up and developed by
French and British nobility. The square tower and the cluster of
buildings around it, the hotels and restaurants of fishermen on the
Quai Saint Pierre, dominate the port. This bit out of the past, and of
another world in the present, is at the end of the vista as one walks
along the Promenade de la Croisette: and the Boulevard Jean Hibert runs
right into it. The touch of antiquity would otherwise be lacking, and
the Artist would scarcely have considered it worth his while to take
his kit when we went to Cannes.

The port is formed by a breakwater extending out from the point of Mont
Chevalier, with a jetty opposite. Except for the fishermen, who are
strong individualists and sell their catch right from their boat, the
harbor's business is in keeping with the city's business. Its shipping
consists of pleasure craft. Among the yachts whose home is Cannes one
used to see the _Lysistrata_ of Commodore James Gordon Bennett. How
many times have I received irate messages and the other kind, too, both
alike for my own good, sent from that vessel! In the garden of his
beautiful home at Beaulieu, between Villefranche and Monaco, the
Commodore told me of the offer he had received from the Russian
Government for this famous yacht. Not many months after the
_Lysistrata_ disappeared from its anchorage at Cannes, the man who had
been the reason - and means - of Riviera visits to more journalists than
myself died at Beaulieu.

Only on the side of Mont Chevalier has the harbor a quay. The inner
side is bordered by the Allées de la Liberté, a huge rectangle with
rows of old trees under which the flower market is held every morning.
At the Old Town end is the Hôtel de Ville and at the east end the
Casino. Running out seaward from beside the Casino is the Jetée Albert
Edouard. To its very end the jetty is paved, and when a stiff sea wind
is blowing you can drink in the spray to your heart's content. Behind
the Casino is a generous beach. This is one great advantage of Cannes
over Nice, where instead of sand you have gravel and pebbles. The
Riviera is largely deserted before the bathing season sets in, but one
does miss the sand. At Cannes kiddies are not deprived of pails and
shovels and grownups can stretch out their blankets and plant their
umbrellas.

The Promenade de la Croisette runs along the sea from the Casino to the
Restaurant de la Réserve on La Croisette. The difference between the
Promenade de la Croisette and the Promenade des Anglais was summed up
by an English friend of mine in five words. "More go-carts and less
dogs," he said. "More wives and less _cocottes_," the Artist put it.
Of course there are some children at Nice and some _cocottes_ at
Cannes. And where fashion reigns the difference between _mondaine_ and
_demi-mondaine_ is unfortunately not always apparent. Gold frequently
glitters. But Cannes is less garish than Nice in buildings and in
people.

Doubling the Cap de la Croisette, we are in the Golfe Juan, with the
Cap d'Antibes beyond. Here Napoleon, fearing his possible reception at
Saint-Raphaël, landed on his return from Elba. A column marks the
spot. Bound for the final test of arms at Waterloo, Napoleon little
dreamed that twenty years later his English foes would begin to make a
peaceable conquest of this coast, and that within a hundred years
French and English would be fighting side by side on French soil
against the Germans. How much did the Englishman's love of the Riviera
have to do with the Entente Cordiale? What part did the Riviera play
in the Franco-Russian Alliance? British and Russian sovereigns always
showed as passionate a fondness for this corner of France as their
subjects. There were even English and Russian churches at Cannes and
Nice. Men who played a vital part in forming political alliances were
regular visitors to the Riviera. At the beginning of the Promenade de
la Croisette, only three miles from the Napoleon column, stands Puech's
remarkable statue of Edward VII, who spoke French with a German accent,
but who never concealed his preference for France over the land of his
ancestors.

One charm of Cannes is the feeling one has of not being crowded. At
Nice and along the eastern Riviera hotels and villas jostle each other.
Around Cannes the gardens are more important than the buildings.
Striking straight inland from the Casino past the railway station, the
broad Boulevard Carnot gradually ascends to Le Cannet. This is the
only straight road out of Cannes. All the other roads wind and turn,
bringing you constantly around unexpected corners until you have lost
your sense of direction. Branches of trees stick out over garden walls
overhung with vines. Many of the largest hotels can be reached only by
these _chemins_. You realize that the city has grown haphazard, and
that no methodical city architect was allowed to make boulevards and
streets that would disturb the seclusion of the villa-builders, who
plotted out their grounds with never a thought of those who might later
build higher up. So roads skirted properties. The result does not
commend itself to those who are in a hurry. But it gives suburban
Cannes an aspect unique on the Riviera. Many of the hotels thus hidden
away are built on private estates, and if you want to get to them you
have to follow all the curves.

The labyrinthine approach adds greatly to the delight of a climb to La
Californie. If you go by carriage, unless you have a map, you are
tempted to feel that the _cocher_ is taking a roundabout route to
justify the high price he asked you. But if you go afoot - and without
a map - you may find yourself back at the point of departure before you
know it. But however extended your wanderings, the beauty of the roads
is ample compensation, and when you reach at last the Square du
Splendide-Panorama, nearly eight hundred feet above the city, you are
rewarded by a view of mountains and sea, from Nice to Cap Roux, which
makes you say once more - as you have so often done in Riviera
explorations - "This is the best!"

After lunch at the observatory we decided to walk on to Vallauris and
look up our friend of Antibes at the pottery. A _cocher_ without a
fare persuaded us to visit the aqueduct at Clausonne en route to
Vallauris. He painted the glories of the scenery and of Roman masonry.
"You will never regret listening to me," he urged. We followed the
wave of his hand, and climbed meekly aboard, although at lunch we had
been carrying on an antiphonal hymn of praise to the pleasure and
benefit of shanks' mare.

We did not regret abandoning our walk. I managed to get the Artist by
the Chapelle de Saint-Antoine on the Col de Vallauris and to limit him
to a hasty _croquis_ of the Clausonne Aqueduct. We were out for
pleasure, with no thought of articles. When you feel that you are
going to have to turn your adventures to a practical use, it does take
away from the sense of relaxation that a writer like anyone else craves
for on his day off. On the road to Vallauris we were more struck by
the heather than any other form of vegetation. The mountains and hills
were covered with it, and whatever else we saw, heather was always in
the picture on the hills and mimosa along the roadside. From the roots
of transplanted Mediterranean heather - and not from briar - are made
what we call briarwood pipes. When a salesman assures you that the
pipe he offers is "genuine briar," if it really was briar, you would
think it wasn't. When names have become trademarks, we have to persist
in their misuse.

Vallauris was called the golden valley (_vallis aurea_) because of the
pottery the Romans discovered the natives making from the fine clay of
the banks of the little stream that runs into the Golfe Juan. For
twenty centuries the inhabitants of Vallauris have found no reason to
change their _métier_. They are still making dishes and vases and
statuettes, and there is still plenty of clay. Moreover, modern
methods have not found a substitute either for the potter at his wheel
or for the little ovens of limited capacity when it comes to turning
out work that is flawless and bears the stamp of individuality. We can
manufacture almost everything en masse and in series except pottery.
Joseph-Marie was not in evidence at Vallauris: but we found the potters
glad to show us their work, seemingly for the pride they had in it. Of
course you did have a chance to buy: but salesmanship was not obtrusive.

The great industry of Cannes is fresh cut flowers. The flower market
of a morning in the Allées de la Liberté is richer in variety than that
of Nice. There is less charm, however, in the sellers. In Nice you
simply cannot help buying what is offered you. Pretty faces and soft
pleading voices draw the money from your pocket. You look from the
flowers to those who offer them: and then you buy the flowers. At
Cannes, on the other hand, you ask yourself first what in the world you
are going to do with them after you have them. Perhaps this difference
in your mood is the reason of the enormous industry that has been
developed in Cannes. You are not asked to buy flowers because a seller
wants you to and is able to lure you with a smile. You are told that
here is the unique chance to send your friends in Paris and London a
bit of the springtime fragrance of the Riviera.

"Three francs, five francs, ten francs, _monsieur_, and tomorrow
morning in Paris or tomorrow evening in London the postman will deliver
the flowers to your friend."

Pen and ink, cards, gummed labels or tags are put under your nose. You
are shown the little reed baskets, in rectangular form, that will carry
your gift. If your Paris or London friend knows Latin, and thinks a
minute, he will realize that Cannes is living up to her name in thus
utilizing her reeds to send out over Europe an Easter greeting,
jonquils, carnations, roses, geraniums with the smell of lemons, orange
blossoms, cassia, jessamine, lilacs, violets and mimosa.




CHAPTER XII

MOUGINS

We were about to enter the Casino at Cannes. The coin had been flipped
to decide which of us should pay, and we were starting up the steps
when a yell and a clatter of horses' hoofs made us look around. A
victoria was bearing down upon us. The _cocher_ was waving his whip in
our direction. We recognized the man who had driven us to Grasse.

"A superb afternoon," he explained, "and Mougins is only twelve
kilometers away. With Mougins at twelve kilometers, it is incredible
to think that you would be spending an afternoon like this in the
Casino. I would surely be lacking in my duty - "

"What is Mougins?" I interrupted.

"All that is beautiful," explained the _cocher_ enthusiastically. "A
city on a hill. A glorious view."

"That settles it," said the Artist, turning away. "Every city is on a
hill, and all views are glorious."

"But Mougins is different," insisted the _cocher_, "and the view is
different. Besides, the wine is unique. It is sparkling, and can be
taken at five o'clock with little cakes. There are roads you have not
seen, and pretty girls at work in the rose fields. We shall drive
slowly."

There had been much wandering during the past fortnight and we were
ready for a quiet afternoon at the Casino. But we allowed ourselves to
be persuaded. The Casino was always there, and we had never heard of
_vin mousseux_ on the Riviera. Baedeker, as if in duty bound to miss
nothing, records the existence of Mougins, three kilometers east of the
Cannes-Grasse road after you pass the ten-kilometer stone on the way to
Grasse - then gives the next town. Mougins is not starred, and nothing
around Mougins is starred. Was not that a reason for going there?

English royalty used to come to Cannes, and every season more middle
class Britishers woke up to the fact that it would be pleasant to write
home to one's friends from Cannes. Hôtels and villas increased
rapidly. When English royalty went elsewhere, Russian Grand Dukes and
Balkan princelings saved the day for the snobs. Consequently, the town
has spread annoyingly into the country. A row of hotels faces the sea,
and on side streets are less pretentious hotels, invariably advertised
as a minute's walk from the sea. A mile inland is another quarter of
fashionable hotels for those whom the splashing of the waves makes
nervous. Then the interminable suburbs of villas and _pensions_
commence.

When city people seek a change of climate, they do not always want a
change of environment. They are intent upon living the same life as at
home, upon following the same round of amusements. They cannot be


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