Photograph Me Like One Of Your French Girls

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Every morning I walk past a pet shop selling dog tweed coats. A dog’s tuxedo in American urban speak is referring to something hip or cool, or incredibly pointless and over the top. Some dogs have better outfits than some people, including me, I don’t own a Barbour jackets while my neighbor’s spaniel must have at least couple. Those lucky pooches in their dashing tweeds relishing their dog days in Hampstead Heath… Let’s move on to people. In my research about everything in hope to come up with the next great middle-class guardian article, dog tweed jackets progressed into men tweed jackets. Being vaguely familiar with London’s elite crowd, I alway held a certain stigma against Chelsea boys and their country houses, as a writer (and a single woman), I must keep an open mind, so I gave boys a second chance. In my research, I discovered an entire catalogue of young, wealthy and successfull young men – in tweed.

I alway held a certain stigma against Chelsea boys and their country houses, as a writer (and a single woman), I must keep an open mind, so I gave boys a second chance.

The online magazine’s journal entry read ’12 Men’ (in tweed). Each of the entries tells a story of culture savvy young gentlemen wearing a garment made of elusive cloth as an alternative to the City dress code. According to the writer, City dress code is a sign of聽frankly declining standards聽within the narrow brief leading to聽consensual聽disarray, [while] the purveyors of art are allowed to express themselves聽within a greater, more exciting gamut’. The聽disarray of so called City decadent culture is no match to the mix of Japanese cotton and merino yarn used in the fine attire of those elusive creative types of high society. They are men in their late 20s, early 30s championing the field of art dealers, artists and entrepreneurs. I held on to my objectivity until I came across the profile post of a guy whom I went on a date聽with a couple of weeks ago, courtesy of an acquaintance who genuinely believed we were made for each other.

Suddenly I felt like a definition of disarray, as sophisticated as a table cloth from Primark.

Suddenly I felt like a definition of disarray, as sophisticated as a table cloth from Primark. There he was – the full technicolour Mr. Dashing Tweed and his full blown contempt. I skipped the article and went straight for the selfie 2.0 (a video) taken by himself exclusively about himself, exclusively for himself. Weirdly enough there was nothing weird about it. Years of professional training by the best photography mentor in Florence, Mr. Dashing Tweed was a textbook definition of affluence and cultural opulence only presumably appreciated by the best of us. Well traveled, well spoken, well dressed, well mannered – every working class women’s wet dream. Sentence after sentence of this mediocre written testament of personal success, evading few real life details, life story which would bore a tabloid reader to death. But I had my own story.

I learned that you can actually reveal your drunk side without having a single drink.

At the beginning of our first spontaneous ‘let’s-get-it-over-with’ date I learned that Mr. Dashing Tweed carried multiple shades of tweed. My investigative side was working hard to find any dirt on his picture perfect resume, but I hit the dead end. There was no way I could complete this blog post without sounding class envy. I didn’t envy, I was rather curious why this man was still single. To my relief, in the course of our 3 hour date in the pub, I learned that you can actually reveal your drunk side without having a single drink. He didn’t drink. In fact, he doesn’t drink, smoke or does drugs. He photographs precious stones and fine jewellery, restores vintage cars, and wait for this, is a self-proclaimed vagina whisperer. He had me at the vagina.

While I was getting to know him, one large glass of rose couldn’t get me drunk enough to piece this epic story together. Screw vintage cars and bling – the man makes women come as a hobby. I must have had hit some universal jackpot. This is how the conversation went:

*talking about some superficial relationships and commitment issues*

MDT: *out of nowhere* Have you had a guy making you come during sex?

Me *Mrs. Red Face* Yeah, like once or twice….WHY DO YOU ASK?

MTD *genuinely surprised* : Really?! How did it happen?

Me: *about to pass out but still intrigued by the subject*: Erm…. Oral…..I guess… ?!

Did I just say聽oral sex on the first date? Where is this going? Is he suggesting something? IS HE?!

MRD: I’ve been with girls who never came in their lives and they only ever came with me.

He wasn’t kidding, and I wasn’t hallucinating. Mr. Dashing Tweed actually has a list of referees to testify on his behalf. He makes women come, and all of it is due to his genuine interest in female anatomy and general biology, also his ability to listen and make women relaxed in his presence. I tried to shake his confidence by suggesting that these (proverbial) women could be lying, but again science strikes back – Mr. Dashing Tweed knows when women come. Now, I have to give credit to this guy, despite his over self confidence and expertise in his field,聽he already answered three of the sphinx’s riddles: he knows WHERE clitoris is, HOW it works, and WHEN woman comes. He is well ahead of most of my dates. Women would agree that men, generally, don’t approach the subject with the same level of forensic accuracy. It’s women who usually read tomes of books on how to please your man.

He already answered three of the sphinx’s riddles: he knows WHERE clitoris is, HOW it works, and WHEN woman comes.

Mr. Dashing Tweed agreed although he couldn’t take the subject of the intercourse to the existential discussion. It was still a dirty talk, but he made it sound as if he was offering the best cup of tea of my life. The more I think about it, the more he deserves to brag about it, like speaking a foreign language or play a musical instrument. As intrigued as I was at the time, I wasn’t entirely convinced I should jump the shark聽and straight into bed with a clit whisperer. Mr. Dashing Tweed had something else up his Barbour sleeve. Turns out he was also a nude photographer. Pause for reaction. All his fascination with Man Ray’esque play of light didn’t stop at聽fine bling, he also liked to play with female curves, in an arty way of course.

Damn right it is an art. The mystique of a female body baffled men for ages. Putting them in corsets, high heels, bras and pantyhose, only for a sole purpose – to undress them. Mr. Dashing Tweed skipping the middle man as in seduction and courting, offers, presumably, what every woman wants – to get naked in front of the camera. This must be a hard sell as lots of women get naked in front of a man without the promise of a nude Instagram picture. Taking clothes off for art is more daunting. Why is it so? No brainer, especially when some of the most famous women in the world are now cautionary revenge tales. As liberated as would like to think of myself, I had to draw the line. Finding the shot of your bare arse somewhere on the internet does not sound liberating to me.

The offer was there, and it stood out like a sore thumb pointing at my mundane existence that I have been experiencing lately. In fact, I was craving something or someone out of line to remind myself there is more to life than the daily commute to work, 聽good manners, and a pension plan. The more I thought about the proposal, the more unsure I was. No way any of this spelled relationship, but it may as well be something I could tell my grandchildren perhaps? Maybe not. I kept it to myself of course. The night carried on, and I was feeling the weight of his advances. The more he spoke about nude photography, the more I drank in vain hope he would write me off as a wasted gutter woman, but ironically, it only gave him more reason to drag me to his studio around the corner.聽

The storm was forecasted that night, and I had to make my move before I heard another ground breaking revelation from Mr. Dashing Tweed.聽By the time I walked through the door, the storm was in full swing, somewhat ominous. I haven’t slept very well that night, mostly because I was having nightmares about this date. Mr. Dashing Tweed followed up with one more message asking if I want to come down and pose for him on Thursday. There wasn’t really a decision to be made but told him I had to think about it anyway. A couple of weeks went by until I heard from him again and we met on a random Tuesday. Although he wasn’t my cup of tea, I still felt I need to give him another shot to redeem himself.

I was already familiar with his inability of maintaining a casual conversation for too long, perhaps it was the nerves, perhaps he is just too eccentric, may be just an arsehole.

Over the course of 40 minutes of our conversation, Mr. Dashing Tweed didn’t hold his breath making a small talk. I was already familiar with his inability of maintaining a casual conversation for too long, perhaps it was the nerves, perhaps he is just too eccentric, may be just an arsehole. The suggestion of visiting his studio came up one more time, and I took up on it. Driven by sheer curiosity and imposed ignorance I followed him into his basement photography studio. I must admit there was a small sigh of relief on my part it didn’t resemble a torture chamber.

It was filled with photography paraphernalia, it smelled of incense and looked like he spent a lot of time in there doing whatever he was doing. However, the topic of nude photography didn’t come up until then. I realised that the clearer I made myself about the offer the less likely he will spend another 10minutes trying to persuade me. I announced that nude photography just wasn’t for me, providing my reasons without trying to get him to understand them. There was a distinct annoyance in his voice as he was suggesting I should be more adventurous and live a little. My eyes rolled to the back of my skull, but I didn’t feel the need to disagree. Although I should have said that owning a camera doesn’t make you Man Ray and owning a professional studio doesn’t make you a professional. Neither the refusing to bare my arse in front of him make me a prude.

Owning a camera doesn’t make you Man Ray and owning a professional studio doesn’t make you a professional.

There was also something else. There was a huge gap between us, not only in terms of background and social status but also in the perception of actual reality. 聽Mr. Dashing Tweed inhibited a parallel universe which he carefully crafted for himself. In his universe, the women were gorgeous and naked, where he was rich and famous, where his status would grant him a right to act like an imbecile without ever being accused of it. He didn’t try to seduce me, even the attempt to kiss me was devoid of any affection. How can somebody with so many resources be so unimaginative? It didn’t bother me at all. All I tried to understand was how my friend who set us up thought we were ‘made for each other.’

I got two lessons out of this. One – no amount of luxurious Japanese cotton blend tweeds can give you class, no amount of education give you common sense and certainly no amount of pleased vaginas will bring you love. The other was never allow your friends to fix you up.

 

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Photograph Me Like One Of Your French Girls

Secret Life of an Anti-Hero

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESLike a good novel, the character must be multilayered with a narrative perfectly answering the needs of the new audience. Last weekend I went on a date with somebody I actually really liked. He聽took me to see superhero movie followed by a long walk. I haven’t heard from him since.聽聽I am suspecting my character wasn’t superhero enough. Some women are like coming of age聽sci-fi thriller,聽聽I am more like post-apocalyptic teenage novel.

The society set strict rules on personal expression and prefer idealised scenes from classical mythology to anything resembling real life. People are increasingly hard to please these days. The lack of patience and abundance of choice, men and women are on the mission to find the existential eden where every one is good looking, young and successful.聽Life is getting tad bit too intense, we want simpler storyline, lower budget and better actors.

Number of times while I was executing my own happily ever-after story, I asked why my character had to be in a therapy? Why is she an 聽academic underachiever and why does she swear so much? Slowly聽I became my own antagonist. But then, on the second thought, world is a tough crowd to please. 聽No matter how hard you try to be Carry Bradshaw, there will always be someone who prefers Samantha.

Many of people we meet, arrived in our lives by accident therefore there is every chance they would leave at any moment; it is crucial they should never be made to work hard, the more familiar the storyline and the character type, the better. My heroine realised just being isn’t dramatic enough: she needed to offer something special. I struggled to grasp the concept of special.

Should my character embark on a spiritual journey beyond the self? She should embrace her neurosis, inferiority complexes and any other non-pathologised disorders to connect to other characters. She should engage in self-destructive activities, join the sub-culture or at least become the part of any resistance movement. And all of this cleverly packaged under veneer of successful and beautiful new age empowered woman!聽Would that keep my date captivated for at least three dates, before I unload the really heavy stuff, like how I know lyrics to all Backstreet Boys songs? Probably, yeah….

 

Secret Life of an Anti-Hero

Why Are You Still Single?

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It must be me. It was always me, I am needy, clingy, I have daddy issues, and I want to be literally handcuffed to the other person all the time. I know. That’s why I am single, that’s why men leg it so fast, they leave skid marks on the pavement and that’s the price every woman must pay in order to keep her marbles together in London. In the past month I was asked in total 聽of three times, the same age old question – Why are you still single? and again and again I find myself making up reasons why I haven’t got that special one (as opposed to other ‘normal’ people). It’s a short leap from mental illness and unlike in medicine there is no pill from singleness, there isn’t a pill which would whisk all your flaws, 聽they won’t prescribe you lobotomy and especially, they won’t hypnotise another person to love you.

There could be an algorithm to happiness, which is called online dating, but then can it calculate the divorce rate? Here’s the perfect match for you, you have 99% matches in music wine preferences, travels and books, however we strategically chose to not include points for neurosis, seasonal depression, bipolar tendencies, AADD, pathological lies, infidelity, fetiches and god knows what else that may come with the 聽package. I have always believed聽the universe prepared a surprise for me in a form of digital prince charming until he failed to turn up to the date. That was a sign impossible to ignore.

People ask me, are my standards too high? Well, define standards. Surely nobody starts a relationship with an attitude: she/he is a 6 after 5 beers. Of course, there is certain expectation in the significant other, unless you have no expectations of yourself and you will go down with pretty much anything anyone throws your way. Is fitness, intelligence, income, and good looks classify as unattainable standards? Is attentiveness, generosity, honesty and respect a high standard? We set standards according to our own, so shouldn’t people be asking me instead if I have such high standards for myself? Live a bit, stop learning that fourth language, 聽cancel your gym membership, take a pay cut, get fat. Can I have a relationship now? Probably not because numbers game is not an answer when searching for ‘the one’.

Is it me? Probably. Is that a problem? Probably not. Am I happy? Definitely yes. Thank you, stop asking why I am single.

 

Why Are You Still Single?

Farewell To My Grandmother

Initially this post was going to be about the time when I got stood up on a date on last Saturday. Typically enough, these things happen to me because, well, I am not exactly sure why. Something else happened the following day which made the unfortunate event less important, if it ever had any importance. I lost my grandmother. It doesn’t find anywhere in the current context of this blog, but this is part of this lifetime, and it’s bigger than anything I’ve ever written.

Her life wasn’t easy. Grandmother always said – going through life isn’t the same as crossing the field – it’s a literal translation, it carried more profound meaning when it was said by her, in Russian. She was born in 1940 Russia when the hardships of war and post-war trauma was weighting heavily on the generation betrayed by the ruling class, the same class which was sent to be slaughtered by Stalin and his parasite huntsmen. The lack of faith in the future and bitter memory of the past was passed on with mothers’ milk to the youth which had no future other than mere survival inflamed by boredom, hard labour and alcoholism. Yet one thing which always remained untainted was love.

My grandmother had a tough start to her life. Being born into peasant family, she got married at the age of 17 to the love of her life, a handsome young man, my grandfather whom I never met. By the age of 25 she already had two young boys and an alcoholic husband. Alcohol, infidelity and violence was a shadow placed upon young woman’s life who didn’t know any better, in fact nobody knew any better, this was the characteristics of the era of the post war small Russian village. However love that she had for my grandfather soothed her existence over the years. Even after his death, she would often speak of him, the love of her life, Nikolay.

Widowed at the age of 33 she remained faithful to him till the end of her life. She lived alone in the remote town called Energetic, Orenburg. She’d come visit both of her sons for a few months every couple of years to look after her grandchildren. I remember her being incredibly stubborn and stern, sometimes clumsy and very protective of her sons which drove my mother mad, but she was also kind and unconditionally loved her grandchildren.

I also remember heated arguments I had with my mother who’d often compare me to grandmother. She criticised my adolescent bitterness, stubbornness and defiance as if it was an inherited flaw. I desperately tried to shake it off, only to realise years later that a so called flaw in character is a flaw my grandmother had no control over. Can you blame somebody for being born into a society which was destroyed and demoralised 聽by war and poverty? 聽A flaw which drove a desperate woman to find herself at the edge of the cliff with two young boys and as if by the same flaw she found her way back to the long lost faith in the future.

I treasure every bit of that flaw I have in me because I am the woman today because of this woman and I am sorry I will never be able to tell her that. I’m terribly sorry. I am sorry I haven’t seen her in more than ten years, I am terribly sorry I didn’t say ‘I love you my darling’ enough. She died in a care home alone, two days before her 77th birthday, far away from where she was born and lived all her life. She often spoke about how she wished to be buried next to her beloved Nikolay, I am sorry her wish didn’t come true. There aren’t enough sorries in the world to redeem the hard life she had. I only hope, that wherever she is right now, she’s at peace in the sweet embrace with the man she loved. R.I.P my darling. I will miss you forever.

Farewell To My Grandmother

When In Doubt, Go French Alps

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Mountains is a pilgrimage destination for depressed, lost and bored. The silent whisper of the God鈥檚 most powerful incarnations is calling us from the distance, we need to get really high to hear it better, in a literal sense. I wasn鈥檛 depressed, but I was bored and thirsty for change. I was standing on the doorstep of the adulthood thinking聽Is this it? Now what? The city was deafening, there was less and less air left to breathe therefore I decided to leave the comfort of mild British winter and travel to the formidable climate of French Alps. Physical exhaustion, elements and the comfort of friendly bar in the presence of the familiar face is a combination resistant to any depression. There is no time to overanalyze, ponder or wallow, only time to act. Go down the slope, go up the slope and embrace raw and untamed power of nature.

The birthday weekend in Chamonix was definitely a change from the usual birthday destination Paris and to my surprise, it opened a new era of adventure which restored the justice to being an early 聽January child. It may not be BBQ in the park, but what BBQ can compare to a glass of gluhwein on the top of Mont Blanc, figuratively speaking. I was wrong thinking that a 4 day trip to the ski resort can only result in a moderate amount of fun and holiday romance is only possible in the backdrop fiery sunsets and bikinis, it鈥檚 just as likely to happen in the backdrop of snowstorms and thermal undergarments.

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Chamonix is reminiscent of an international summer camp abroad. You may want to meet new people but language barrier reduces the experience to making out in the local night club. I did that 15 years ago in Italy, yet today not much has changed, I was still making out in the corner of the club with a guy who hardly spoke any english. And yet, before I turned 30, I was anticipating a visit from the elusive lady called Maturity, which despite my best hopes, remained a no show. Today, I hear, growing up is becoming notoriously unfashionable amongst millennial crowd, and while I am still not entirely sure what generational label I was prescribed, I鈥檒l just chose what suits me the best – do whatever fuck I want.

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The crowd in Chamonix is close to the crowd of Marbella, predominantly english yet not overwhelmingly embarrassing. Stag do’s, company鈥檚 all-lads debauched ski trips, fathers and sons bonding holiday, and what do you know, British Army. Women however, were in the minority which wasn鈥檛 completely bad news for me, although towards the end of the trip I was practicing my biblical eye-roll every time a middle aged bolding John tried to find out where is the best place to hang out or asking where my accent was from. There were also the likes of married Eliots who shamelessly paraded his wedding band while trying to give me a neck massage, Martins from Morrisons who鈥檚 聽young age was his only excuse, unfortunately not great enough to overcompensate his lack of the game skills (if any), there were young British soldiers Gilberts who just turned 20 and already wanted to marry me.

Chamonix is an easy place to lose your sense of age. In Chamonix age becomes an illusion, both in philosophical and practical terms. I felt it especially strong when I was taking my first ever ski lesson next to a string of 5 year olds who were kicking my ass while I struggled to keep my skis in parallel. Children make everything look so easy. Was it the smell of burning log, mountain air, 聽chalet style huts or sheepskins, but being in the mountains makes you feel alive on so many levels. Playfulness definitely presides in the air along with memory of long gone days when climate warming was still a science fiction and our Christmases were white. Nothing is off limits in Chamonix as long as you stay warm and open minded. The friendliness of locals and optimism of seasonaires makes you feel home away from home. If I arrived feeling a little bit off piste, I left Chamonix feeling on top.

When In Doubt, Go French Alps

It’s The Loneliest Time Of The Year

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Christmas time is probably the most extreme time of the year in terms of almost non-existent聽self-control accessorized with even less existent self reflection. I must have read a sad statistic somewhere once, probably in one of those pseudo scientific聽guardian articles on Facebook that the most relationships break in December, effectively me being the best example, while my friend told me a story how she got together with her ex just so she had somebody to cuddle up with on cold December nights. The idea appeared to be tempting, however I had to be realistic and question myself, even if there was a chance in hell of me bringing somebody out of the wood work, was I willing to go through 9 circles I got away from? I didn’t think so.

The thought of being alone on Christmas, yet again, seemed more unsettling this year than any other year. Perhaps it’s due to the inevitability of my 30th birthday in January, I naturally analyse things with rigorous forensic attention to detail – I don’t cut myself any slack and I even find it especially hard to entertain the possibility of any sort of harmless one night stands, because, like everything else, it no longer serves as a thrill, but a tedious obligation to your twenties, usually fuelled by alcohol and gaps in the judgement. I would much rather prefer waking up in the comfort of my own bed and weekend newspaper, than waking up to a stranger, regret and unresponded text message. This is the hell of my own making.

Medieval torture hangovers and puffy face are just a small reminders that I can no longer party like it’s 1999 and neither can I keep up with ever changing women beauty standards, credit card bills, pay gap, brexit, men chasing skirts, men wanting casual sex, men not being able to call women any more, tinder, bumble, grindr. Fair to say,聽I grew tired and cynical, and festive spirit hasn’t made an appearance just yet. The Christmas party glass is never quite half empty. I no longer believe in Santa Claus, but I believe in Christmas spirits – vodka, gin and brandy. Each of them have shown me the side of myself I wish to forget. This Dickensian fantasy is no more fictional than a drunken snog with your work colleague 聽– it happened, but nobody speaks about it.

The confession of the day is my world is suffering from vitamin and romance deficiency. My shrink said to me couple of months ago I need to stop being naive: the dating pool is getting shallower and I am not getting any younger, if I don’t make the single men train, soon I will be making home wrecker, divorcee and midlife crisis train. But she was wrong. It’s not the pool that’s getting shallower, it’s us, who are scraping the bottom of the mulled wine bottle.We shed a tear at Christmas ad, now we go and get drunk on festive eggnog cocktail, skimming over the fact that there is no-one waiting for us at home.

Happy Holidays.

It’s The Loneliest Time Of The Year

Disgrace, Princess of Monaco

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Nice Panorama

Traveling is both an agony and the ecstasy. Everything is a pain in the arse until you get to your destination, and once you get there – everything is rainbows and unicorns. Last week I set off to explore Cote D’Azur. I desperately needed a break on my own – an escape to a fantasy land where every step has a potential to grow into adventure of a life time. Being a francophile as much as I am there was no need to wreck my brain about which destination to go for.

Early on Wednesday morning, I kissed the moody London goodbye and jumped on a plane to Nice. Only a short sleep later, I woke up to the most beautiful dream I ever seen. Recent weeks in London weren’t the best weeks I had since arriving in UK ten years ago. With the impeding gloom and doom of brexit which was progressively getting worse with each news headline, it was effectively completed with perpetual rain which was affecting me on the emotional level. This trip was so overdue,聽I was ready to run away.

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C么te d’Azur

Mediterranean air instantly brought me back to life. I craved for nothing else than to stretch out on the beach and forget about everything that burdened me over the past six months. Like a new born baby, I baptised myself in the Mediterranean sea, smeared some sun lotion and reborn as a pilgrim on the journey for inner peace and fulfilment. I had six days of freedom and I was going to use them to the max potential.

Like any brit tourist who hasn’t seen the sun for the past 100 years, I was doomed to get coup de soleil within first 3 days of my beach session. I also granted myself a permission to do two things which I rarely allow myself in London 聽– smoke and drink to an excess which came naturally in Nice since smoking and drinking wine even in AM hours was a conventional thing to do. Long walks around the city, the promenade, the train journeys along cote d’Azur 聽were soothing.No wonder this region was favourited by worlds elite and royalty over the decades. It’s picturesque landscapes and vast horizons became synonymous with happiness and good life. It has a certain quality of indulgence, a permission to celebrate each day as a gift, rather than living in struggle hoping for the better times ahead. Living in a moment has never been easier, better yet, it was inescapable.

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Monaco, C么te d’Azur

Of course, I was aware of my budget and I could not deny the fact that in order to live the life of fairy tale which is so beautifully advertised on instagram, you must be wealthy. Wealth is another synonym of cote d’Azur. It’s hard to be oblivious of it because it’s stares you directly in the face where ever you go. Luxurious hotels, cars, yachts, designer shops, restaurants, fancy dames with pampered pooches, villas with private swimming pools – all makes a fantastic parallel universe which is equally attainable and lightyears away for ordinary human beings. Yet I have never been to a place which would motivate me more to pursue the good life, to follow my dreams and to make cardinal life changes. And I wasn’t the only one.

There are always two sides of the coin. I was always susceptible to harsh truth which I still greeted with pragmatism. While I was feeling completely free and independent enjoying this trip alone, I had to endurea certain level of abuse which was totally underserved on my part. Not many people will relate to this because majority of people don’t travel alone, but I felt constantly subjected to a judgement which only a young woman can be subjected to on the occasion. I discovered that people in Cote d’Azur have a rather savage perspective on female travellers, especially if they arrive unaccompanied. In my case, I was constantly seen as a prostitute which was at first infuriating to the point I wanted to hide in my room just so I don’t have to explain another man I don’t wish to have his home address or pretend I didn’t hear how group of guys just called me une pute. Must say, you do get used to it after a while.

While I never had to face this type of judgement while living in London since the concept of the prostitute can only be applied to women in west end night clubs, a guy I met in Nice explained to me that south of France, especially places like Monaco and Cannes, is a magnet for women looking to gnaw the piece of that cosmic wealth accumulated in the region. C’est terrible after dark. Meeting a wealthy man is an aspiration for many women and while the cinderella phenomenon was possible few decades ago before dating apps came into place, now it’s so rare, it’s practically impossible. However it doesn’t stop flocks of young Eastern European women from traveling to Monaco looking for a better life.

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Streets of Monaco, C么te d’Azur

This realisation repealed me from even entertaining the idea of meeting the prince charming with a yacht on this holiday. Even if I could compete with model looking 聽courtesans, I would be seen too unsophisticated in my appearance and attitude, leave alone my hostility towards this exchange economy. What I saw instead, under the veneer of endless luxury and sophistication, lies rotting culture of exploitation and objectification. I stayed walking around Monaco until the dusk and left right before, once I again I was subjected to further abuse.

Cote d’Azur still puts me in a dream like state. If you choose to close your eyes on everything what happens in the privacy of luxury apartments, you will witness the beauty of the landscape, joyful holiday makers, and never-ending celebration of life which is so appealing to people around the world. I came back refreshed and full of ambition which I never had before. I am not the one to demonise the wealth, it’s not the money that’s bad, it’s what you can do with it. Princess, Grace of Monaco is a wonderful story indeed which is still being seen as the greatest cinderella story there ever was, but in the changing world we must look for new stories. Stories where women are able of creating their own fairy tales by creating a dream life for themselves without having to sacrifice their ambition or dignity. Until next time, C么te d’Azur! Merci and 脿 bient么t!

A NOTE:

This post 聽was written day before tragic events in Nice this Thursday so please don’t treat it as insensitive. I was still deeply in my holiday mode when I heard the news. I am experiencing immense sadness and regret for all the lives lost. The fact that was walking down the promenade des Anglais only two days ago was the closest I have ever been to a tragedy. Every one I met on this trip are safe and sound. #prayfortheworld

Disgrace, Princess of Monaco