How I Turned My New Normal Into A New Life

Le plus important en fin de compte, ce ne sont pas les cartes qu’on vous a données, c’est ce que vous en faites…C’est la leçon que j’ai apprise de mon expérience avec le cancer et c’est le sujet de mon nouvel article pour I Had Cancer! Ihadcancer.com
 
What really matters in the end, is not really the cards you are dealt but rather how you play the hand…This is the lesson I have learned from my experience with cancer and that’s the topic of my new article for I Had Cancer! Ihadcancer.com
 
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When I got diagnosed with cancer in the midst of my 30s, I did not let the news bring me down. Instead, I immediately turned into a brave little soldier and accepted all the treatments that were thrown my way without flinching. I was convinced that I would win this fight and that life would just be brilliant afterwards.

But unfortunately this is not what happened… Indeed, when the euphoria that followed the end of the ordeal died down, it finally hit me. My body was still not in as good a shape as it has been and no matter how hard I tried or wanted it to happen, I just could not fit back into my old life. And, if at first I was just happy to celebrate my friends’ weddings, baby showers and professional successes, I began feeling like my life was passing me by and that I was becoming a mere spectator who was not allowed to have their share of the cake.

It was as if all the repressed fears and pains were slowing coming out. I started suffering from insomnia and getting stressed over menial things. I became angry more quickly and began losing interest in some of the things I used to love. I basically felt that I no longer had any control on what would happen to me and was terrified that my cancer would come back. Mostly, and it took me a while to admit it, I was feeling vulnerable because of what had happened to me.

I felt ashamed because I was one of the lucky ones. So many of my fellow cancer fighters had lost their battle while I had been given a second chance, so who was I to complain? And with nobody around to listen to my worries, for my family and friends had already turned the page and moved on, I had to find the resources within myself to give a new meaning to my life. And this is how I adopted my 3-way plan to make the most of what I had been left with.

It started with taking some baby steps. I first had to accept that I was no longer the same person I used to be, and that it was okay if I was not able to bounce back in a day. I had been through a lot and I needed to acknowledge the changes cancer had brought to my life before I could accept them. I was no less of a person because I needed time to grieve. I therefore allowed myself to cry, and I did cry a lot at that time, or vent my frustration. But at the same time, I also made sure to pat myself on the back when I was making progress, or to be forgiving when I did not.

Little by little, it became easier to start planning a future based on my new reality and, as a consequence, to lower my expectations. That was the second step. I had always been one of those girls who dreamed big and always wanted more. I now knew that I had fewer options but did not want to let those unfortunate chances hold me back any more. Life is full of opportunities once we no longer let ourselves be burdens by the standards imposed by society. It is way easier to take a new direction without the pressure to necessarily make the most of our existence.

It is way easier to take a new direction without the pressure to necessarily make the most of our existence.

I thus left the stressful corporate world and a job that had become meaningless for a position in a small governmental entity. This may be less glamourous on paper, but it gives me the impression that I am finally making a difference in this world.

With a new purpose in life, the third step was to simply count my blessings. I now make a list every evening of all the good things that has happened to me over the last 24 hours. If I first started with some very little things, I now have the impression that my life is made of many beautiful moments – whether it is simply a splendid sunny day or a nice lunch with a friend.

After all, what really matters in the end, is not really the cards you are dealt but rather how you play the hand.

What have you done to take back your new normal?

Photo courtesy of Jason Briscoe.

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AUX DEUX CHEFS – TWO CHEFS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE

Le secret le mieux gardé de Nice? Nice’s best kept secret?

One chef by the oven in the kitchen, the other in the dining room looking after the customers. That’s the recipe for success adopted by Aux Deux Chefs.

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A lovely neighbourhood restaurant, Aux Deux Chefs is located on rue Dabray, a stone’s throw from the Gare du Sud. But describing the place as just a spot for the locals would definitely be doing it a misjustice.

Making their own the saying of famous chef Paul Bocuse: “There is no good food if initially it is not done out of friendship for the person to whom it is intended”, the two young cooks at the helm of the restaurant, Jean-François and Vivian, both graduates from the Nice and Menton culinary schools, offer a gastronomic menu full of surprises, each more delightful than the last, in an atmosphere reminiscent of that of Lyon’s Bouchons.

The accent is put on seasonal and fresh products and if the dishes are all pretty traditional, they each come with a twist to excite even the more demanding palate.

Take, for instance, the Hamburger Nissart, made of beef, sun-dried tomatoes, black olives and pesto. Meanwhile, the fillet of duck breast is caramelized with honey and lavender, the cod loin is served with a rouille, a Provençal mayonnaise made of olive oil, and the sea bass is cooked with Parmesan cheese and pesto.

The prices are very reasonable, especially considering the quality of the cuisine. A “menu plaisir” that consists of an appetizer, an entrée, and a dessert costs just €25, while the dishes “à la carte” range from €13 to €22.

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The two chefs want you to have an unforgettable experience so they are always happy to answer your questions and adapt, if necessary, the dishes to suit your needs or desires.

With the Libération district getting trendier by the minute, don’t wait any longer to try this gem…we have a feeling that this will soon be the Place To Be!

CONTACT DETAILS
Restaurant Aux Deux Chefs
56, rue Dabray
06000 NICE      

Tel: +33 4 93 52 56 50

Open Monday to Saturday from 11:30am to 2pm and on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings from 7pm to 10pm.

 

All images courtesy Aux Deux Chefs

INTERNATIONAL PRODUCTION SHOT ON THE RIVIERA PROMISES TO BE THE NEXT BIG TV HIT

Glamour, drame, fourberie…C’est la recette de Riviera,  une production internationale qui devrait être le prochain gros succès télé. Glamour,  drama, double-dealing…That’s the recipe of Riviera, an international production that should be the next big TV hit.

Shot last summer on our shores, Sky Atlantic’s eagerly anticipated drama Riviera got its big debut recently at miptv, in front of players from the TV and digital industry.

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There could not have been a more appropriate setting for the world premiere of Riviera, a new 10-part television series which is all about complex relationships and audacious excesses in the sun drenched luxury of the French Riviera!

Created by Oscar-winning writer and director Neil Jordan (The Borgias, The Crying Game), based on an idea by former U2 manager, Paul McGuiness, and co-written by Booker Prize-winning author John Banville (The Sea), the glamour thriller tells the story of Midwestern girl, Georgina, played by Hollywood star Julia Stiles (Jason Bourne) who was married to billionaire and art collector Constantine Clios, played by Anthony LaPaglia (Lantana), until his demise in a yacht explosion. As she tries to uncover the truth about his death, the heroine slowly comes face to face with the extent of her husband’s questionable business dealings, as well as a world of deceit, depravity, and corruption.

Aside from Stiles and LaPaglia, the international cast also includes some big names like Adrian Lester (London Spy) as Georgina’s friend and art dealer Robert Carver, Lena Olin (Chocolat) as Irina, the first wife of the dead man, and Iwan Rheon (Game of Thrones) and Dimitri Leonidas (The Monument Men) as Constantine’s sons, Adam and Christos.

A murder, a glamorous location, a handful of colourful characters and a great dose of double-dealing, Riviera definitely has all the ingredients to become the next huge TV hit. While there are no fixed dates set for its release, the series is expected to launch in the UK and Ireland in late 2017, while many countries around the world have already bought the broadcasting rights.

 

All images courtesy Sky Atlantic

BEWARE THE ULTIMATE NINJA WARRIORS OF CANNES!

La nouvelle saison du jeu populaire se passe une nouvelle à Cannes. The new season of the popular is once again taking place in Cannes.
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Following the success of its first season, the French version of TV series Ninja Warrior  will be back on our screens this summer, once again featuring numerous shots of the old port of Cannes.

Filming is underway on the Esplanade Pantiero, right in the heart of the city, and will continue until Thursday the 13th. A great occasion for locals to see hundreds of wannabe ninjas compete to become the ultimate warrior.

Based on the global hit « Sasuke », which is now in its 31st season in Japan and has led to many spin-offs around the globe, including Singapore, Malaysia, Sweden, Denmark, the UK, and the US, the extreme fitness show is definitely the biggest and most impossible obstacle course in the world. To date, only three contestants have completed it, so the 250 participants who are currently taking part in the French version of the game are sure to be in for a rough ride.

They will first have to tackle the six obstacles of the assault course in an attempt to reach the Top 10 and earn themselves a place in the final, which will be decided in a timed race on the last day of the event. Last year, no competitor was able to complete the entire course and so the prize money of €100,000 was left unclaimed.

The second season will once again air on French TV channel TF1, which acquired the rights for the show in 2015, and will see the return of popular presenters Sandrine Quétier, Denis Brogniart and Christophe Beaugrand.

250 seats are available each day for the event, allocated on a first come, first served basis, so if you want to see what the buzz is all about, get thee along to Cannes!

CONTACT DETAILS
Esplanade Pantiero
06400 Cannes

NICE SHOWS SOME AMERICAN LOVE WITH NEW EXHIBIT

Nice se met à l’heure américaine cette année! Nice is showing some American love this year!

When US Congress declared war on Germany on 6th April, 1917, the Niçois city fathers decided to rename its famous « Quai du midi » to « Quai des Etats-Unis ».

A century later, it was thus natural for Nice, which has been commemorating the First World War with a series of yearly exhibitions since 2014, to celebrate the impact the American presence had, not only on the city, but also the entire French Riviera.

1917 Nice l'américaine expoEntitled « 1917: Nice l’Américaine », the exhibit starts in 1787 with Thomas Jefferson, who was the first known American to travel to the south of France, and follows with Uncle Sam’s soldiers on “rest and recreation” as they showed locals the pleasures of bathing and sunbathing. Soon after, with the region transforming itself from a winter to a summer resort, it was the turn of the crème de la crème of American high society to flock to the region’s villas, private beaches and night clubs, to rub shoulders with famous artists from the ‘Lost Generation’.

The region had by then earned its reputation as a hedonistic paradise, and became a mixture of opulence, glamour, joie de vivre, and jazz music. Cole Porter rented a house on Cap d’Antibes for two summers in 1921 and 1922 and played in American-owned cocktail bar le Pam Pam. The wealthy Murphys took advantage of the strong US dollar to escape Prohibition at home and to make the Riviera their home. There, they entertained their many friends from the artistic community. Gertrude Stein, Ernest Hemingway, Man Ray, and John Do Passo were just a few of the A-listers who participated in their wild parties, while F. Scott Fitzgerald perfectly captured the atmosphere of the era in his famous novel ‘Tender is the Night’.

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While the roaring 20’s came to an abrupt end in 1929 with the stock market crash, the interest in the Côte d’Azur never really waned, and American money played an important part in the region’s development. Billionaire Frank Jay Gould opened the magnificent Palais de la Méditerranée right on the Promenade des Anglais, while American director Rex Ingram rescued the Victorine Studios from bankruptcy, giving them an international dimension.

The exhibition ‘1917: Nice l’Américaine’ is being held at the Archives Municipales in Nice until the 29th of September and will also include conferences, educational workshops, jazz sessions, and a cycle of American films held at the Cinémathèque de Nice.

photos © RIVIERA BUZZ

NOTRE DAME DE PARIS THE MUSICAL IS COMING TO NICE

Pour célébrer le printemps, Notre Dame de Paris arrive à Nice.To celebrate Spring, Notre Dame de Paris is coming to Nice!

Nearly twenty years after it premiered in Paris to both critical and popular acclaim, musical spectacular Notre Dame de Paris is coming to Nice for a three day run this April.

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Set in 15th century Paris and based on the Victor Hugo masterpiece, the highly popular musical tells the story of Notre Dame cathedral bell ringer, the hunchback Quasimodo, and of his hopeless devotion for the beautiful gypsy girl, Esmeralda, who is being lusted after by the handsome, yet unfaithful, captain of the king’s archers, Phoebus, and by Frollo, a priest torn between his faith to God and his desires of the flesh.

As Gringoire, the poet, helplessly witnesses the tragedy unfold, the six other principal singers perform the beautiful score, composed by Richard Cocciante, with lyrics by Luc Plamondon, and which includes Le Temps des Cathedrals, Belle, and Vivre. Meanwhile, some 24 dancers and acrobats fly across the stage, break dance and gracefully arch their bodies to create an atmosphere similar to that of a French circus.

This poignant tale of impossible love may not have a happy ending, its many interwoven storylines remain today more relevant than ever with topics such as racism, refugees seeking asylum, and the role of religion. Hence the standing ovations every night!

Notre Dame de Paris has already attracted audiences of more than four million in France alone, and has been staged in more than 20 other countries, from Italy and the United Kingdom, to the United States and South Korea.

Only time will now tell whether the musical becomes the new Les Mis, but there is little doubt that it will capture many more hearts in the years to come with its timeless story of love and betrayal.

Notre Dame de Paris runs from the 21st to the 23rd of April at the Palais Nikaïa in Nice. Tickets range in price from 28€ to 69€ and can be purchased through all the usual outlets or reserved online.

CONTACT DETAILS
Palais Nikaïa
163, boulevard du Mercantour
06200 Nice

Tel: +33 4 92 29 31 29

MONACO PAYS TRIBUTE TO LONG FORGOTTEN LOCAL ARTIST HERCULE FLORENCE

Nouvelle expo à ne pas manquer à Monaco. New not-to-be-missed exhibit in Monaco.

Villa Paloma in Monaco hosts a new exhibition of the works of long forgotten local artist and explorer, Hercule Florence.

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He may have developed a method for printing photographic images using silver nitrate and urine in 1833, and had his experiments published in a Rio de Janeiro journal, but Monegasque-Brazilian artist Hercule Florence nonetheless lived most of his life in relative obscurity. He never got the place he deserved in history for his contributions to modern photographic processes.

A new exhibition of his works being held at Villa Paloma in Monaco is thankfully rectifying this, and finally giving him the proper credit he should have received much earlier.

Born in Nice to a surgeon in Napaloeon Bonaparte’s army and to a Monegasque mother, Augustine Vignalis, Hercule Florence grew up in the Principality. At the age of 20, he was hired as a cabin boy on the French ship Marie-Thérèse, which was touring the world and it was during a stopover in Rio in 1824, that he decided to stay in the city. A year later he was selected by the Baron of Langsdorff to document his scientific expedition to South America.

For five years, Florence was in charge of collecting information about the flora, fauna, and native tribes of the Amazonas. To do so, he invented what has been dubbed the Zoophonie to record the musical notation of bird songs as well as the Polygraphia, a printing method based on the principles of photography.

He also produced a series of drawings documenting the culture of coffee in the north of Sao Paulo and the native populations, put together a “Picturesque-Celestial Atlas” that depicted clouds in the sky of Campinas, and also produced many scientific manuscripts and biographical diaries, in which he detailed his research as well as the Langsdorff expedition which came to a tragic end..

Part of theses drawings and manuscripts are among the 400 pieces of art on display in Monaco alongside the first photographic copy of the history of the Americas as well as works created specifically exhibition by international artists such as Lucia Koch, Jochen Lempert, Leticia Ramos and Daniel Steegmann Mangrané.

‘Hercule Florence, Le Nouveau Robinson’ exhibit at the Villa Paloma runs until the 11th of June 2017. Tickets costs €6 and the exhibition is open daily from 11am to 7 pm.

CONTACT DETAILS
Villa Paloma
56, boulevard du Jardin Exotique
98000 Monaco

Tel: +377 98 98 91 26

STEP INTO THE SECRET WORLD OF CHINA’S LAST EMPERORS THIS SUMMER IN MONACO

Un bel été en perspective à Monaco! A beautiful summer on the horizon in Monaco!

The Forbidden City comes to the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco this July, promising another spectacular summer exhibition to rival past editions.

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Each year the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco takes us on a wonderful journey through history and art with its summer exhibition:  Moscow, Splendours of the Romanovs, Queens of Egypt, The Grace Kelly Years, and Art Lovers Stories of Art in the Pinault collection are just some of the more recent triumphs.

The 2017 edition will be no different, offering visitors a unique chance to immerse themselves in China’s rich past and get a glimpse into the extraordinary life of the country’s imperial life, as more than 250 artifacts from the Forbidden City will be on display from the 14th of July to the 10th of September.

The exhibitionThe Forbidden City in Monaco. Life of the Court of Emperors and Empresses of China”, jointly curated by Jean-Paul Desroches, Honorary General Curator, and Wang Yuegong, Director of the Imperial Court Life Department at the Forbidden City, will shed light on the mysterious life inside the world’s largest imperial palace, which the last imperial Chinese dynasty, the Qing (1644-1911), called home but which was off-limits to all but the emperor, his family and thousands of servants, including concubines and eunuchs.

 Located in the heart of Beijing and named as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1987, the palace is a grandiose complex spanning approximately 727,000 square metres and made up of more than 980 buildings, as well as approximately 8,700 rooms. It became a museum in 1925, one year after Fu Yi, the Last Emperor, went into exile, and houses the largest collection of China’s imperial collections of paintings, ceramics, and decorative objects.

This summer in Monaco, visitors will be able to admire these national treasures, including portraits, ceremonial costumes, furniture, precious art objects and scientific instruments, straight from the Emperors’ former palace, as well as other masterpieces on loan from major European and American collections, including the Musée du Louvre in Paris and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.

16 years after the Grimaldi Forum’s successful exhibit “China of the First Emperor”,the Principality is getting ready to once again celebrate all the splendour and magnificence of a civilization that still fascinates centuries later.

The Forbidden City in Monaco. Life of the Court of Emperors and Empresses of China”will take place from the 14th July to the 10th of September. Pre-sale tickets are currently available for purchase online for just €5.

CONTACT DETAILS
Grimaldi Forum
10, avenue Princesse Grace
98000 Monaco

Tel: +377 99 99 20 00

 

JAIN AND THE AVENER TO HEADLINE NICE MUSIC LIVE FESTIVAL

Le Music Live Festival est de retour! The Music Live Festival is back!

Cancelled last summer in the wake of the tragic events that plunged the entire region into mourning, the Nice Music Live Festival is back this July.

Back with a vengeance and stronger than ever, the Nice Music Live Festival returns with an eclectic line-up featuring the best of French music from today and yesteryear. The festival, which successfully replaced the very popular Crazy Week back in 2015, will welcome The Insus?, Camille, the young Niçois, The Avener, and one of the musical sensations of the moment, Jain, all in a superb location, the Théâtre de Verdure / Place Masséna.

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The festivities will kick off on Saturday the 22nd of July on a rock’n’roll note, as three former members of the legendary French band Téléphone take to the stage. Highly popular in the 70’s and 80’s, The Insus?, as they are now called, have recently reunited after a hiatus of nearly 30 years and have been electrifying audiences with their energetic renditions of the band’s most famous hits such as New York avec toi, Cendrillon, and Un autre monde.

They will be followed on Monday by multi-cultural pop singer Jain who has been making a splash both at home and on the international scene over the past year with her unique blend of reggae, electro sounds and Arabic percussions.

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Influenced by the many places she called home while growing up, from Toulouse to Dubai, and from Congo to Madagascar, she won two Victoires de la Musique (the French equivalent to the Grammys®) earlier this year, for Best female Artist and Video of the Year for his first album “Zanaka”, which includes the hit singles “Come”and “Makeba”, a song dedicated to South African and civil rights activist Miriam Makeba.

The next evening, it will be time for some avant-garde music with Camille, a singer/songwriter who has been hailed as Björk’s natural successor, before The Avener closes the festival on Wednesday. After conquering the world at the end of 2013 with his rework of the Phoebe Kildeer song “Fade out Lines”, the local artist should bring the audience to their feet with his uplifting electronic sound.

The festival takes place from the 22nd to the 26th of July. Tickets cost from €33 to €60.50 and can be bought from all usual outlets or reserved online.

What better way to start celebrating music and life again!

MAMAC CELEBRATES GUSTAV METZGER, THE FATHER OF AUTO-DESTRUCTIVE ART

Dernier article en date pour Riviera Buzz. Latest article to date for Riviera Buzz.

The Musée d’art moderne et d’art contemporain in Nice (MAMAC), presents a retrospective of the work of Gustav Metzger, running until the 14th of May.

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Gustav Metzger, best-known for his auto-destructive art and left-wing activism, was born in Nuremberg in 1926 to Polish-Jewish parents. For more than six decades, he has been using everyday materials like newspapers, cardboard, and paper bags to address issues close to his heart, such as extinction, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, terrorist bombings, climate change and environmental pollution.

The art, architecture and design world needs to take a stand against the ongoing erasure of species – even where there is little chance of ultimate success. It is our privilege and our duty to be at the forefront of the struggle. There is no choice but to follow the path of ethics into aesthetics. We live in societies suffocating in waste. Our task is to remind people of the richness and complexity in nature; to protect nature as far as we can and by doing so art will enter new territories that are inherently creative, that are primarily for the good of the universe.” – Gustav Metzger

Metzger’s work has been presented in solo exhibitions around the world, from The New Museum in New York (2011), to the Serpentine Gallery in London (2009), but calls for public participation are really what lies at the core of his artistic practice.

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In 1961, for instance, wearing a gas mask, Metzger performed one of the most famous acts of auto-destructive art when he threw hydrochloric acid at a sheet of nylon on London’s South Bank.

This is why, in parallel with MAMAC’s main exhibition, Remember Nature, the public were invited to witness the reenactment of two are Metzger’s main creations. Aside from the aforementioned South Bank demonstration which was recreated earlier this month, students from the École de Condé also recreated Mobbile, a sculpture placed inside a clear Plexiglas box, affixed to the roof of a car that was driven through the streets of Nice for a week at the end of January.

Remember Nature runs daily from 11am to 6pm until the 14th of May (closed Mondays).

CONTACT DETAILS
MAMAC
Place Yves Klein
06364 Nice cedex 4