So I survived the Cannes Film Festival. I ran between interviews, screenings and parties for 12 days and wasn't sure just how I would pull it off given that no bedtime came before 3.30am and yet not only am I still standing but I feel great.
Had a lovely chat with Jay Z at Kanye West's premiere party at Palm Beach. First off, I couldn't believe my eyes when I spotted him shimmying on the spot to the disco classic All Night Long right next to me. 'It's Jay Z isn't it?' I said and he held out his hand and said 'Yes maam,' shaking mine. We're both sporting short crops at the moment and he said:'I love your hair. I thanked him and said it was easy to just wash and go and he added: 'Hey tell me about it,' gesturing to his close cropped hair. It was a moment. Kim Kardashian and Kanye, pictured in the background above, looked cosy.
Despite a crippling schedule, I saw and loved Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom, Brad Pitt's satirical gangster yarn Killing Them Softly, On The Road, based on Jack Kerouac's iconic novel and Michael Haneke's Amour about the love between an old Parisian couple as she falls ill, rendering him as her carer. Not much happens, and for most of the film it is a two-hander in their apartment but I defy anyone to watch it and not be moved. It well deserved the Palme d'Or for director Michael Haneke.
Other highlights? Well Brad looked gorgeous as always on the red carpet and I drank two months rations of Laurent-Perrier at the parties...Calvin Klein's was the ritziest, at a sumptuous villa above Cannes with A listers galore including Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Chris Rock and Alec Baldwin. I saw Ronnie Wood perform at VIP Room with Cyndi Lauper, Aloe Blacc at the Eden Roc and reluctantly passed on Simple Minds private Replay gig. I also mooched about on Eva Longoria's yacht.
The Filmmakers Dinner at Eden Roc was also pretty special but by day 9 I was starting to flag and blew out a late invite for dinner at the Carlton with Nicole Kidman, John Cusack, Matthew McConaughey and Zac Efron for a quiet supper with Iain and the girls in sleepy Le Rouret instead. It was a no brainer. The glamour and glitz is great but normal life is even better.
I am a London-born journalist, married with two daughters, who one day took a punt and upped sticks with my family, our cats and dogs to start a new life in the South of France.
Prompted by the desire to have an improved quality of life and better manage the balance between working and tasting the coffee, we sold up lock stock and barrel and headed for the little Provencal village of Le Bar sur Loup, 30 minutes from Nice.
Our beautiful Victorian house in Hertfordshire was swapped for a derelict villa on a hillside which represents a huge black hole into which we throw endless fistfuls of money but hey, we have sunshine, views to die for and the best rose in the world to drink.