MONACO – MONTE CARLO
I wish I had a big story to go with this blog.
It’s very simple. Glenn had a business meeting in Monte Carlo. Neither one of us had ever been there. So on Friday morning we took the hour and forty-five minute flight from London to Nice and hour after that found ourselves in the lobby of The Hotel de Paris in Monte Carlo:
It is perfect for a weekend, if you need to be there or find yourself close by. I don’t know that I would go out of my way to see it, though I am thrilled I now have. But, I would go to North Korea if someone invited me. I would actually love to see North Korea.
Not that there are two places on the planet less alike than North Korea and Monaco.
The sparse, spare, dark, cut off, totalitarian provision-less North Korea and over the top, blingy, glitzy, foreign money stash haven Monte Carlo should not even share the same sentence.
Everywhere you look in Monte Carlo you see giant yachts, Maseratis, Ferraris, Bentleys, jewelry stores and big, tall Russian girls, with pouty, silicone lips and towering sparkly shoes clutching brand new Hermes bags.
It looks like the pilot for a new Simon Cowell show called The World’s Got Money. Which of course, most of it doesn’t, so there is an air of irony and fantasy that hangs over the place if you don’t take any of it too seriously.
While it is pretty, very pretty actually, there is not a hell of a lot to do. Thus we spent much of our forty-eight hours in the neighboring seaside towns of France.
Monaco being a tiny principality, that happens to be tucked into the South of France. In fact it is so much a part of France, my friend Madelaine, (who you will hear about later in the week) showed me a part of town, where one side of the street is Monaco and the other is France. You can buy your milk in Monaco and cross the street and buy your bread in France. There is a whole tax thing that goes on with that, but it’s too complicated to get into.
Gambling is a big deal there. We don’t gamble. But after dinner the first night we took an obligatory stroll through the casino and promptly left. While lots Russians were tossing Euros around like they had just minted them.
According to Glenn “It’s a place where people nest like ancient Dodo birds a top their money.
That being said, we had a great time.