La Pointe des Fous: 2017
On this promontory where Vinnie was murdered, five tourists are ostensibly taking photos of a streaky sky, toothy rocks and agitated sea. In reality, they’re only photographing themselves, documenting their presence in Biarritz. They know nothing of Vinnie. Why should they? Thirty-four years have passed since his death. Perhaps I’m the only person who remembers him; I’m certainly the only one to make a pilgrimage in his name.
How Biarritz has changed. Run-down and ragged when I lived here, the promoters, decorators and architects have since taken things in hand; and destroying monuments, manors, exotic parks, they’ve created featureless apartments for retirees, sterile hotels for tourists who demand an Internet connection. Or perhaps I’m the one at fault, always out of step with contemporary taste, contemporary aspirations, contemporary conversation and contemporary behaviour.
I have no reason to remain — this is merely a trip down memory lane — and it’s a pleasant enough town, despite the modern ravages. The air is rich with the odours of southern vegetation and damp salt; and minus the holiday crowd, the sea front is elegant. Yet, when I lived here, I thought it a sad, sullen place. But I was a different person back then: a desperate creature, fleeing Dominique’s exactions; a lonely woman, spending days in cafés, noting down the conversations of others and the dull details of my own eventless life. I was a dreamer waiting for perfect love.
And, like Vinnie, I was an easy victim, scrabbling into other people’s lives and believing their lies.