Aug. 21, 2000
By senior Vanessa Fuchs
Each night here in Nice I have told myself that I will take the morning to
sleep in but it never seems to work out like I planned. I am not sure why
that is, but my feeling is that the sights and sounds of the city just
outside our hotel are just too magnificent to stay in bed and miss. I went
to bed last night at 3:00 a.m., but the rocky beach of the French Riviera
came calling me at 9:30 a.m. Today the game plan was similar to the past
two days– hit the beach to catch some more rays, play around with a few
more water toys and find some more cute shops to spend my francs. I still
hadn’t had my turn at the wave runner, and para-sailing with Brooke Wyckoff
yesterday was so much fun, that I decided I just had to fly one more time.
Kristin Brookens and I paired up to do both. The biggest achievement of the
day had to be when we convinced Coach Johnson to para-sail. She is
terrified of heights, so this was not an easy task. Coach Sue is frequently
telling us to, “get outside our comfort zones,” so I think this was a great
example of that! Way to go Coach J!!!
I must say, three days on the beach has brought out skin color tones that I
never knew we had! Many of us are walking around looking like crispy
critters, sore from the rough abuse of the water toys and yet we still come
back the next day for more.
Later on in the afternoon we got cleaned up, put on some spiffy clothes,
and pulled out around 3:00 p.m., for the luxurious country of Monaco. The
bus ride was close to an hour, but there was plenty of scenery to pass the
time-Elton John’s mansion, several capes and harbors filled with boats, and
the Monaco soccer stadium. I don’t think the locals could ever get bored
with the beautiful sights that are here. My camera, well actually Brooke’s
camera (mine was stolen back in Paris-ooops!), has been glued to me at all
times. I have taken 10 rolls of film so far. It has become a joke among
the team. Shinikki Whiting has been hoping that my battery runs out so that
she does not have to pose in any more of my pictures. I can withstand some
teasing knowing that these pictures will capture some really great memories.
Monaco was filled with more great sights. We stopped by the palace of the
king, watched the changing of the guards, and had some free time to shop
and, of course, take pictures. Sarah Heintz, Coach Heintz’s daughter,
bought an adorable porcelain doll from one of the merchants. This area is
obsessed with cars and racing because every shop had Monaco Grand Prix
Our whole entourage ate dinner at a fancy restaurant called Caf? Du Paris.
They seated us on the outdoor patio right across from the famous Monte Carlo
Casino. The restaurant atmosphere was extravagant, and the patrons were
even more so. But by now, we fit right in or at least we try! Following
dinner, those of us who were of age (21) took a stroll through the casino.
People were crammed inside, each one mesmerized by the slot machine in front
of them. But don’t worry Mr. Minnix, we didn’t bet on it! There must have
been some high rollers in the casino because the cars parked outside were
impressive. Bentleys, Ferraris, Rolles Royces, Jaguars, Alpha Romeos were
all in attendance.
We left Monaco about 9:30 p.m., and headed back to Nice. Tony, our
hilarious bus driver, dropped some of us off near the open market area so we
could do some more shopping. Here it was, 10:30 p.m., on a Sunday and the
place was hopping. There were tons of people walking around, eating at the
cafes, and stopping by vendors who were set up all over the place. Life in
the French Riviera. We headed back to the hotel to pack for an early
I can’t believe we go home tomorrow. Most of us are ready to head back to
the states, but the time we have shared here will never leave us. It has
truly been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I can’t wait to come
home and tell everyone about it. To the soccer and football teams, we
haven’t forgotten about you and we are looking forward to your games this
weekend. Good luck!!