Hanging cucumbers, late mail and quick decision makers
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Hanging cucumbers, late mail and quick decision makers

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Finally, the Cannes Film Festival has ended. Every year it is the same ritual with abundant rain that rinses almost all the stars of the red carpet. Today is the last day with drizzling weather and then the temperatures are far above 30 degrees. Yet there are people who claim that the weather has really changed because of climate change: ‘In the past, the summers were warmer.’ Or, ‘in the past, the winters were not that cold.’ Fortunately, there is a handy website where you can find the weather forecast for last year or ten years. ago. And guess what? Ten years ago it also rained a lot in May.


It also rains in the housing market, but then with buyers who all want to reserve the best spot. The Cote d’Azur remains extremely popular with all nationalities and the ever-growing madness of the housing market sometimes creates surprising moments. For example, two weeks ago we were in a green meadow two minutes from the sea with a couple who have been looking for a new apartment of 90-100 m2 for a year with a budget of 650,000 euros. That should be possible, but yes, with sea view in a quiet place, then you have to be able to decide quickly.


Just when we found the ideal apartment, the prospective buyer made a comment that he would like to have the garage for free. I explained once again that there is too much demand for luxury new buildings to sprinkle with expensive gifts, but that we could always try it. When we wanted to enter the sales office to sign the reservation contract, the sales director came to me; “Abé, (that’s what the French call me because Ab is not a name) I have bad news, this apartment has just been reserved by phone.” And so we could do nothing but look at the grass that in this case seemed greener than ever. They could laugh about it, luckily.

A bit further away in Nice, people did not laugh at all this weekend, when more than 30 VTC drivers were demonstrating by driving slowly through the city. Not that someone really noticed the protest, but it made the newspaper. These drivers with those luxurious black-blinded vans complain of course about Uber, the handy taxi service that is many times faster and once again many times cheaper than these drivers that rip you off twice in front of your door. “May is normally a top month for us, but we had the Film Festival and that was very bad for us in terms of work. And for Formula 1, that also looks very bad.” Sad. Maybe they should start thinking about how to beat Uber instead of complaining. Something like more service maybe?

No, then the poor people in Monaco really have cause to complain; here the delivery of the post is structurally much later than people are used to, starting from June 11. The reason for this delay is the relocation of the sorting office from Nice Airport to Toulon. You do not hear me say anything about French efficiency measures, but it is always a long shot whether Post with the French mail arrives at all. You are much better off with e-mail for really important things. And otherwise, there are many similar actives at sharper prices such as in the region www.familyprocourrier.fr or www.step-post.fr, www.postcenter.fr or procourrier.fr

Fortunately, there is also good news to report: it is scientifically proven that optimists live longer. Despite all the grumbling, life expectancy on the Cote d’Azur is well over 80 years. Check out how old you become when you just be happy! The government expects that the number of elderly people aged over 80 in 2050 has doubled and so measures must now be taken in the area of care and housing. The first luxury old people’s homes with daily sports lessons, heated swimming pool, and 3-star restaurant have already been spotted.

Cool old timers

Not only people, cars also last longer and longer. I like to drive my own in my 12-year-old Volvo where many people go aside and I do not wake up with an extra scratch on the paint. And this summer we can use the 16-year-old Peugeot Cabrio of a friend. All those old-timers continue to do well thanks to strict MOT checks that are going to be even stricter. From this week cars are checked for no less than 610 points. For all this care the price goes up from 75 to 100 euros.

And that’s how we stay healthy together; with regular check-ups and of course good food. We are very much into bio gardening; in the end, the nutritional value of a tomato or zucchini is no longer what it was. In our greenhouse, unpressed peppers, tomatoes, cauliflower, courgettes and lots of herbs and lettuce grow. It is fun, tasty on the table and also surprisingly instructive. Because did you know that cucumbers prefer to hang in the sun? I suddenly look at vegetables very differently and like to participate in the rhythm of the cucumber, nicely in my hammock.

We hope to see you soon on the Côte d’Azur!



PS Have you received so many emails this week about the GDPR, the EU’s strict privacy rules? From May 25, the citizen will receive extra protection from, among other things, websites with a newsletter. They will have to explain how privacy and data are regulated. You can find our updated Privacy Statement here.

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About The Author
Ab Kuijer

Experienced communicator and marketeer. Former radio, TV and advertising producer in Amsterdam. Author of ‘Think Small, Grow Big’ that explains why advertising is dead. Owner of an international marketing agency specialised in real estate. Lives in the South of France since 2006 for obvious reasons: sun, sea, wine and healthy food. Became on the Cote d'Azur the first Dutch President of the British Chamber of Commerce, later rebranded the Riviera Business Club. Happily married to Jojo. Ab reads and writes 2000 words per day about different topics.Living on the Côte d'Azur is the first real estate portal with a personal service. A daily fresh collection of more than 1400 high-value luxury properties and new construction projects along the French Riviera; from Menton to Saint Tropez. Clients recommend us for being responsive, professional, honest and accurate.With local multi-lingual teams, Living on the Côte d'Azur provides a 'Good old Dutch' Service for foreign buyers, helping them on the journey from a long-list selection towards visiting the short-list. We explain how French real estate law works, and guide the buyers through the impressive French paperwork and are finally present at the notary for the final deed.