Well, folks. Amid the insanity that is Monte Carlo and all the reasons I am here, I had a nice day at the beach. I did it! I sat for four hours which is the longest I have sat anywhere since having kids, excluding labor itself, and even then, I walked around quite a bit.
I sat at the Monte Carlo Beach Club on a chaise lounge with my iPod nano and my fancy headphones and I listened and I watched. Then I strolled along the water and sat at the edge of the sea. Then I people watched from my lounge chair. Then I drank a mojito and ate some Triscuits. Then I wrote in my journal. Then I sketched some of the guys working for the beach club, who seem entirely thrilled to spend the day running around in the hot sun bringing rich folks bowls of fruit and Evian. It was awesome.
Here are some features of a day at the beach with Mayim:
1. The outfit. I don’t generally wear a swim costume (AKA bathing suit for all you non-Europeans–ahem). There are tznius (modest) bathing suits in existence and I just ordered one for the summer, but sometimes I just don’t even bother, putting on my black Capezio bathing suit with a t-shirt. Then I don’t feel weird and yucky comparing my body to everyone else’s and I just enjoy the other aspects of the beach. Also, the water was freezing I’m told so I didn’t miss out. I wore a long cotton striped skirt and a 3/4 sleeve t-shirt. I even avoided black (my normal favorite color of clothing), aren’t you proud of me?
2. I hate the sun. I snagged the one shady chair under two lovely small trees and I did not get sunburned at all, not even on the parts of me that showed! The sun is bad for skin. It’s even worse for actors who need their faces to stay young and unfreckled and un-age-spotted. So I avoided the sun and since I was in the shade, didn’t even need a hat all day. My publicist and friends all got burnt to a crisp, “even though I put on sunscreen!” Um, newsflash: you have to reapply it frequently and not lay down and bake in it to not get sunburnt!
3. French men. French men are adorable. I’m sorry, but it’s just true. I favor thin effortless lanky men. I don’t like quaffed buff dudes, and the French man does not disappoint. And I could have sat four more hours than I did watching tan French men kiss each other hello on the cheeks. That’s a standard greeting for these dudes. I love it.
4. French women. French women clearly all use surrogates to carry their babies because there is no way babies come out of these bodies. I saw many French mamas with small kids (and a nanny to boot) and they seriously looked like they must have squeezed a child out of their ear. Granted, these are very wealthy people I am seeing who likely have trainers and chefs and the like, but let’s just say even if I had a bathing suit I probably would not have wanted to walk around in it unless I had a phone appointment with my therapist scheduled for afterwards. Seriously.
5. The water. My name means “water” in Hebrew. The beach is my favorite place. I stared at the water while listening to Adele for a long time. The waves are relentless, crashing over and over and over again with no help from me. Each crash moves the rocks on the floor of the ocean sometimes slightly, sometimes greatly. But each time everything shifts and will never be the same again. I feel very close to The Divine when I see aspects of nature that are impossible to calculate or understand. This is not my world, it’s truly God’s world.
Tonight marks the end of the Golden Nymph Monte Carlo experience. I know returning home to my sons will be wonderful, and I am sure that within 15 minutes I will wonder why I missed the clinging or kvetching or shoving or shouting. But I don’t belong here among the rich and famous. I belong at home among the small and delicious tiny versions of me and my husband.
Maybe one day our boys will experience Monte Carlo and they will have their own love for the beaches, or the casinos, or the beautiful rich people who come here to live the life of luxury Monte Carlo provides. And on that day, I can marvel at how time has changed the city and the beach through the stories they tell me.
But the waves will still be crashing with no help from us, and the sea bed will still be shifting slightly, ever so slightly, one wave at a time.