Saturday, 28 June 2014

L'autre Belle Poubelle

Cannes snapshots 2

The horrors of beauty. At one point we saw three generations of plastic surgery tottering down the street. 

In cafés old French men sit with their wives. When a young beauty glides past in hot-pants or bikini or sarong they let out a guttural growl. It is half lust, half despair. The wives seem unmoved or moved to pity by this infidelity. 

I try it with Annabel for a game. We search out the "woofable" but I can't quite manage it even in jest. 

On the first night we sit by the sea and watch. I am moved to bad poetry again. I keep hoping someone might comment and say. "Alex that is really good poetry, you should be a poet" but it just never happens. I follow a really bad poet on twitter, he is relentless, a bit like the sea. 

On the third day we hit the sea properly in the traditional swimming costume clad manner. It is warm and full of plastic objects and other objects that aren't plastic. We do the fun thing of clinging together in the waves until one rabbit-punches us. We are knocked down laughing and crawl out on our knees. 

Never laugh in the sea it can leave a bad taste in your mouth. 

The "I can see the sea!" moment is my favourite sea related experience. It always signalled the end of an horrifically boring and hot car journey which had to be endured nearly every summer of my childhood.

Wordsworth remembered something similar though more dramatic upon his approach to Whitehaven. 

"With this coast I have been familiar from my earliest childhood, and remember being struck for the first time by the town and port of Whitehaven, and the white waves breaking against its quays and piers, as the whole came into view from the top of the high ground down which the road (it has since been altered) then descended abruptly. My sister, when she first heard the voice of the sea from this point, and beheld the scene spread before her, burst into tears. Our family then lived at Cockermouth, and this fact was often mentioned among us as indicating the sensibility for which she was so remarkable."

I like the idea that the sea has a voice. In Cannes it woofs. 

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