"When good Americans die, they go to Paris." - Oscar Wilde

Monday, May 16, 2011

Monaco's So Rich They Use Louis Vuittons for Trash Bags

This weekend I visited Cannes, Nice, Monaco, and Cap d'Ail. I never have faith in my ability to retell these sorts of things. I'm still dizzy from my 13-hour train ride. And I think I might have caught a cold. Damn you, public transportation.

Ashleigh, Lien, and I left Angers Thursday and took an overnight train to Nice. This was horrible and I barely slept. Nonetheless, we were all giddy to be in Southern France during the CANNES FILM FESTIVAL! We got to our hostel and quickly realized that everyone there spoke English because the owners were Australian and Canadian. Literally, no one made the effort to speak French. This made me feel like I was partying in the U.S. again.

We went to Monaco for the day and I have never felt so underprivileged in my life. Monaco, a separate country from France, is inhabited only by the rich. Each passing car was either a Range Rover, an Aston Martin, a Ferrari, or a Maserati. If a Ford drove by it was a tourist. Indeed, when Americans want to feel poor, they visit Monaco.

Of course, you can't visit Monaco without visiting Monte Carlo, the world-famous casino. We gambled on the slot machines and Ashleigh won 100 euros off of a 1 euro bet. We all grabbed each other and screamed in the middle of the casino. After a half-hour, I started getting the gambler's itch so I left with my depressing 5.60 and Ashleigh promised to buy our drinks for the weekend.

That night, we partied at the hostel. My friends and I now tell people we're Canadian so we can party like rockstars without further tainting the U.S.A.'s shiny reputation. You're welcome. Unfortunately everyone at the hostel was from Canada. We didn't want to be found out so Lien Googled Canada facts on her Blackberry at the bar. We learned that their prime minister is Steve Harper and made toasts to him all night (much to the chagrin of the true Canadians).

The next day we attended the Cannes Film Festival. The energy was incredible. Girls dressed to the nines, hoping to receive an extra ticket to a showing. People held up signs saying, "Un billet, s'il vous plaƮt!" Some lucky by-standers got their tickets. The girls and I lined up for the premiere of Pirates. We pressed our bodies against the gate and leaned over to watch Renaults and Mercedes discard American and French celebrities. Uma Thurman and Jude Law walked three feet in front of us and we all screamed. Lien told Uma she was beautiful and she turned to say, "Thanks." I can't explain the thrill of seeing these people, only reachable on a television screen, walking in front of me. Later, we saw Johnny Depp, Penelope Cruz, de Niro, and Jane Fonda.

We had planned to stay out partying but we were exhausted and headed back to Nice for the night. The next morning we visited Cap d'Ail, a little-known beach surrounded by wealthy landowners. It was stunning, so we drank Coronas in the sun. But it soon began to rain, so we hauled our asses back to the train station for another sleepless night. We arrived in beautiful Angers this morning and now I feel like shit. I must say that I'm glad my last trip (to Brussels) is this weekend, because all of this traveling is making me weak. But would I do it all over again? Absolutely.

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