Dispatches From The Road: Cote d’ Azur Part I, Cannes

City Travel, Dispatches from the Road, Extras, Food & Wine, France, Shopping & Style — By on July 23, 2009 at 10:23 pm

Today we have guest blogger Kelly M. Newsome sharing one of a series of posts about traveling through Europe. A self-described “recovering business attorney,” Kelly took a career break to explore Asia, Australia, and, now Europe. She’s also a yoga teacher, freelance nonprofit consultant, and community service devotee. She currently resides in Paris. You can read about this trip, and check out her volunteer activities and kids’ yoga classes on her blog. Here’s her take on Cannes, and why it’s okay if you don’t feel “sparks” with every place you visit.

guest blogger“I had such high hopes for Cannes. Having been mesmerized by its reputation, I arrived already intoxicated with possibility. I believed in this city, eagerly anticipated it, and knew I’d fall in love the moment I stepped off of the train on Day 1. So on Day 2, I rationalized, “okay, lukewarm start, no big deal, doesn’t mean sparks won’t fly today.” But, let’s be honest: I usually know on the first date. And I’ve never not known by the second date. There just wasn’t chemistry.

Even if it’s not going to last, though, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time. I bronzed on beaches, paid way too much for martinis (and water), went window shopping down Boulevard de la Croisette like I had money, and people-watched at the Vieux Port like I was getting paid for it. I enjoyed my usual traipse-around-town, first the more modern streets with glamorous hotels and posh cafes, and then the historical quarter, with peeling, wooden-shuttered buildings and 70-year old men feeding pigeons.

It’s not that Cannes isn’t cool; it just sort of tries too hard. I first arrived not long after the film festival, and it still seemed like everyone was trying to keep up with the Joneses. I can’t commit to words like “pretentious” and “disingenuous” – they’re a bit harsh – but if you could put a sugar coating on them, they’d probably do the job.

Of course, I could have it all wrong. Yes, perhaps I should’ve started visiting in May when the hype was at its peak, and our timing simply isn’t right. Absolutely, I could have spent some time on the nearby islands for a little balance. Or maybe I’m just not cool enough to get what makes this town so attractive. Regardless of the reason though, we tried, Cannes and I. I’m disappointed, but I’m okay. Sometimes it just isn’t a match.”

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  • ConnieMotz says:

    Beautiful photographs – thanks for the insight! Have fun & take care.

  • Xohaib Mashwani says:

    First of all I would like to appreciate your blog, nice efforts made here. Well I first came across Cote d' Azur while I was playing NFS 5, the place inspired me enough to start searching it on the internet. I would say its one of my favourite places on earth. I wish to plenty of time one day to pay a nice visit.

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