Former London Socialite Managing Life on a Budget and a Prayer

A Virtual Visit to Cannes

Cannes France

Photo Credit:

Over the last few days, I have been itching to get away for a few days – out of the country, not just another village in Portugal or London, away-away. I’ve recently had another health issue pop up and am awaiting the results of the tests so, naturally, I want to run away, be on my own, with my thoughts hoping that time will pass quickly away from the everyday routines of life. It’s not as simple as that.

I had seen a photo of myself sitting on the balcony of a beautiful hotel in Cannes from a trip our family took some years ago, and I thought, that’s the place where I want to be, just for the time being. These moments in these days; with a few books, the phone off, no internet (of course there is internet access in Cannes) but not for me.

I want solitude amongst the masses of beautiful people that I can spy with my little eye as they stroll along the sandy beaches or the Esplanade. Popping in and out of the designer shops; a little Louis Vuitton©, or Jimmy Choo©? Why yes, I don’t mind if I do. A few of the places that I frequented on our last trip there and did some severe damage to our bank account. Now, it’ll be more like window shopping and little damage to my bank account, but I still like to look and looking never hurt anyone, right?

I started searching for my hotel of preference, the Majestic or was it the Martinez? Here begins my quest that leads to the question that brings me here tonight. I went trolling through my 17,000 plus photos to find that one photo of me sitting on that balcony. The penthouse suite with me on the chez lounger with my MacBook Air doing work; well, I think I was doing work on behalf of the other half at the time. I remember he had a big presentation to give when he returned, and I was putting it together for him. He will, of course, have a different recollection of these events.

As I was looking for that damned photo, I realised that I had virtually no images of our life together. Oh, there are a few photos sprinkled here and there of my son or me but mostly our cats, the house, the garden, a few scenes of my son at school events; otherwise, nothing significant of those years we had together. The holidays, the everyday occurrences that were frequently captured by the phone lens or my new camera; there was always a new camera and a new phone for that matter. He liked to buy things for me, for us, even if we had ten of something, you could never have enough, and it had to be newer, better and more expensive than the one he bought yesterday.

No photos. When my ex left, it felt as if he had hit the delete key on the keyboard of our life. However, now I see that I was the one that actually, truly hit the delete key on our life. I erased all those years from any concrete memory records and I realise that I acted hastily. Angry at the situation, left me without the ability to look at my old life ever again. I knew I was angry, I knew I was stupid, but I didn’t realise how angry or how stupid I could be until now. Everyone has their own way of coping with divorce, I think I’m not alone in my method, but I suggest to others that haven’t hit that delete key, to think twice before you do it.

I found an old MySpace account, that’s a delightful stroll down memory lane, but, in general, those years of my life are more or less lost in cyber-space. I have two rolls of undeveloped film that I have been dragging around with me for ten years, who knows if they can even be developed at this point and more to the point, why don’t I get them developed and see what’s on them? And, I never take that leap to get them developed. I’m not sure what I’m afraid of; probably just more photos of the cats, the house, fields of flowers or rape.

My point. Hindsight is always 20/20. Everybody knows this. As I get older, and think about my life then and now and remember the good times, the bad times and everything in between, I realise that despite erasing these photos from cyber-space, the memories still exist in my head. But when I want to do a fact-checking session, like which damned hotel did we used to stay in, I need that bloody photo to do it. We had fun there. Why shouldn’t it still be fun?

I need to be that person that I was then every now and again, I need to be her. Not, the simple, thrifty, low-profile person I have become since then, but the old, somewhat more glamorous version of who I am today. Sometimes when I am in this place, a place of doubt, or worry, a new boyfriend, a change, not having a paying job yet, etc., I have a burning desire to temporarily go back to that old life. To live again, for a short period, the glory days of when I mattered during a time when most things utterly don’t matter.

Thoughts of my former life swarm my brain like bees in a hive and I can’t get them out. I don’t think I can sashay down the boardwalk anymore in my Jimmy Choo©  heels, perfectly coifed long, golden locks of hair, with my Audrey Hepburnesque sunglasses on, and slink back into the fringe of that social scene again, not in jump headfirst into the deep end, but stay in the shallow end and wade around and watch the life I had, relive the days of old, and just be someone else for a few short days. In my head, that’s where I want to be, precisely.

I think, however, this will still be a virtual visit to Cannes and I can relieve these moments in my head for now and the practical person that I’ve become will overpower the desires of reliving my glory days because retail therapy or running away doesn’t solve the problems and I’d probably suffer from the Jewish guilt I was brought up with after frivolously spending too much money on a beautiful hotel in the South of France just to do some people watching….but one never knows…or perhaps it’s time I start now with making new memories with the special people in my life now!

Ciao for now…and as always, thanks for stopping by!


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