Riviera of No ReturnJune 7, 1994 Here I am back in the land where a taxi driver carries not a weapon but the two-volume Brothers Karamazov. Mine is two-thirds the way through volume I and clearly anticipating II. Can it be that this urge to read accounts for the national system of taxi stands rather than New York’s gas-guzzling cruising? J’aime aussi Dostoyevsky, I offer as he deposits me at my hotel unfashionably facing the train station. This hotel is one of those Cannes stories. Last year another journalist and I turned over $250 apiece to a perky, Paris-based but purely American publicist — call her Miss P — who said she’d found us coveted lodging. Someone was selling rights to two festival reservations he’d “owned” for years, she said, and now we would have the rooms “for life” or could sell them if we so chose. During our stay, a friendly desk clerk informed us that the hotel, under new management, had been closed the previous year for renovation, and that Miss P herself had simply reserved our rooms. After we went home, the concierge later reported, she stopped by to reregister us, in case we’d merely assumed “owner’s… Read full this story
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