Comeback Queen

October 20, 2008

Line stared at her two shoe options, as chosen by her styliste, Mona, who declared that both shoes were hot, next season, and dying for her feet.

One was a black strappy and studded pointy-toe Versace pump. The five inch heels screamed “Sex!” and she wasn’t sure if that was the statement she wanted to be making.

The other shoe was a divine silver strappy sandal, a Jimmy Choo, with crystals going up the back of the heel, so delicate, so beautiful.

Either shoe went perfectly with her short, ruffled and layered Rodarte mini-dress – which was the perfect shade of pale pink – not too nude, not too orange, and just the right amount of sheerness. Just enough to subtly show off her assets.

Lina really wasn’t overly perplexed over her shoe decision, but she was definitely trying to waste time, to push off this gala thing she had to go to – the only reason for going was to prove that she still ‘had it’, after all.

But when she looked in the mirror, she didn’t see the sexy supermodel anymore, all she saw was a scared not-so-little girl staring back at her. Asking her if she even had an ounce of “it” anymore.

It was at that precise moment that her best gay boyfriend and sometime hairdresser, Michel, walked into the room. He was wearing an ultra-tight shiny Dolce & Gabbana suit in the same colour as her dress.

“Lina!” He exclaimed in his crap ‘high society British’ accent that he put on when going to high society galas, and also when he was just a little bit too high.

“For Godssakes darling! Put on a shoe and let’s carry on! The car is waiting! The camera’s are waiting! The World is waiting!”

Lina watched his performance and his expectant face, her smokey-made-up eyes glanced at him, making her look mysterious, almost like someone else, she noted.

“Michel… I just don’t know if I’m ready. I mean, really really. I just don’t think so.” She gave him a shrug and looked back at her reflection.

“Look Darling! If Kate Moss can make it back from a little scandal so can you!”

“I guess,” Lina looked at him doubtedly, then posed a couple of times for good measure.

“See! You still got it! Now chop chop! The car is waiting!”

She held up both shoes to him, daring him to pick one.

“Hmm. The black pumps. Sexy.”

Lina slipped on the sex-bomb Versaces and left her home in the Bentley Michel had secured for the Gala Event.

Michel spent the whole ride on his phone – calling, emailing, texting – which allowed Lina to think more about the scandal that led her life to its present tense.

She thought back to when she was a fourteen year-old hot-at-the-moment model, hired for all the Euro runways, by eighteen an internationally known supermodel. Known for her long legs, her soulful eyes, and her lips, which were perfectly full, and whose slight smile made men and photographers weak at their knees – because Lina Minski didn’t smile for just anybody.

At twenty, Lina’s mysterious smile had been on every major fashion magazine cover in the world, and was a host on a modelling competition television show in her native France.

She had met Peter Winstorm at a gala function, she was twenty-two, he was twenty-four, a sexy footballer on some English team, and she fell in love.

Her wedding was featured in OK! and written about in Vogue – after a two-month  honeymoon travelling through Spain, Fiji and the Greek Islands, Lina found herself pregnant.

She spent her pregnancy decorating her two mansions, one in London and the other in Paris, two sitting rooms, two master suites, two baby rooms.

She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Chloe Helene, and whose pictures were also featured in OK! in a ten-page spread. The spread showcased their London home, the life she and Peter had created for each other, and their addition to their family, their gorgeous little girl.

When Chloe was six months old, pictures were leaked to the press of Peter partaking in drugs and other women while partying with teammates.

And although she was beyond embarassed, he promised her it would never happen again, and she forgave him and they moved on.

But two months later, the drugs came back, kicking him off the team temporarily, and only caused him to party and cheat more.

Lina stayed with Chloe at their Parisian home, and Peter stayed across the river in their London home. Lina became a recluse from the public eye, now the papers were rampant with stories about her and Peter almost everyday.

They eventually got a divorce, she kept her Paris home, he kept the London one, and, because of his drug addiction problems, she had sole custody, allowing him monitered visits twice monthly.

This painful and seemingly private family breakup destroyed more than just her heart.

Her body was no longer what she once had. The stories persisted aobout her and Peter for months after the divorce, and the stress had taken its’ toll. She didn’t eat properly, stopped working out and because frighteningly thin for a while. She didn’t dare step outside her property, if she did the paps got another picture of her looking scary and giving newspapers more stories about her.

What hurt most were the allegations of her own drug use, and accusations of being an unfit mother.

Now, almost four years later, most had forgoten about Lina Minski, so much so that even she had found herself irrelevant.

And yet, there she was, in next seasons frocks and shoes, on her way to a fashion gala, trying to prove that she still had “it”, that she was still somebody to see, someone to book for jobs.

Although Lina was never going to be poor again, thanks to a rather hefty divorce settlement, it would still be nice to do something with her life, to show her daughter than her mommy was a sombody to be proud of, not some washed-up has-been.

Lina was being nudged by Michel to get out of her daydream.

“Lina, darling, have a bump – You’ll be more yourself!”

She obliged, sniffing some coke, passing the silver vial back to her friend and smoothing out her hair, getting ready for the paps.

The car stopped in front of the building, in front of the red carpet, which she had begged not to walk, to which Michel insisted that she may not even bother going if she wasn’t going to walk the Red Carpet.

And so, she obliged.

Michel walked out first, allowing Lina a more demure exit out of the car. Lina was blinded for a moment stepping out of the car, and then she was reminded of the old days. Looking beyond the flashes of lights, her seductive pouty lips forming the slightest of smiles that was her signature, pushing her left hip back, extending her right leg out, and giving the paps what they wanted for exactly ten seconds.

Lina allowed herself to be led up the steps with Michel holding her arm, and at the very top, she tossed her head around, getting a high off the extra flashes, oohs, and aahs she received from the crowd and entered the building.

The night was beautiful. She mingled, drank champagne, and ate very little.

She went home late, tucked herself deep under her plush covers and fell into a deep sleep.

A week later, on a bright and sunny Saturday morning, a five year old Chloe ran into her mama’s bedroom with magazines in hand. Shouting “Mama! Mama!” and giggling and speaking so quickly in French that Lina’s could only smile her biggest smile, which she kept only for her daughter.

Lina’s “comeback” had landed all the tabloid magazines, but the satisfaction and happiness in her heart came from her daughter’s face, looking at her mama with all the stars in her eyes. Lina felt happy again.

Lost in Celine

August 9, 2008

Celine sat on the bench in Paris, the setting sun casting an angelic glow upon her golden hair, the wind causing her skin to shiver, hugging her huge YSL Tribute tote and glancing around at the crowd, waiting for someone. But who?

Who was going to save her?

Celine had started her day off in a small town on the French Riviera, close to Cannes, sprawled out on a yacht that belonged to a rich business man she had been seeing. They spent three days drinking wine, fucking in the sun, and getting body treatments at the spa close by. It all had to end when his Spanish wife came aboard, furious, slapping her husband and screaming profanities at him in her language.

A maid told her to quickly get off the boat, so Celine stuffed her bag with whatever she could get her hands on, and walked her tanned little butt onto shore. The rich businessman called her phone repeatedly until she finally answered – to which she heard a few half-assed apologies and ended up hanging up on him.

She went to a little cafe for a late breakfast, where she met the most beautiful Hungarian boy, who loved her YSL tote, loved her sense of style, and was going to Paris that day to see his boyfriend. Celine realised that she had nowhere to stay and nowhere to go, so she went with this beautiful gay boy named Harry to Paris.

Hungarian Harry drove a sporty Peugot and took Celine across France to Paris. It was a long trip that took up most of the day, but she learned enough about Harry to know that he was somebody to know. He was a stylist at heart, a makeup artist by trade, and loved to take photos of beautiful people in dirty places.

He made her promise to pose for him one day soon.

She agreed and quickly fell asleep.

Celine awoke to cars honking, people shouting and french rap music. Harry was stuck in Paris traffic and looking for a place to park.

“Celine, I can’t wait for you to meet Frederik! He is darling! Beautiful! Almost like you!” Harry’s Hungarian accent was muddled with a bit of French. Celine just smiled and waited for the car to stop. She loved going places, but she hated travelling, the constant movement always made her feel uneasy. She just wanted to get where she was going.

They met up with Frederik at a cafe close to the Eiffel Tower, a little kitsch and touristy for Celine, but the warm latte filled her up and the ambience all around her made the morning seem like it happened ages ago.

Harry and Frederik insisted that Celine wasn’t being a third wheel, but their body language and their eyes said something else – Celine took off ‘sightseeing’ and saw the cute boys go up into Frederik’s apartment building.

She didn’t know where to go though. She just kept walking. She heard her heels hit the pavement with a satisfying clap, and she ended up on a bench in a park that she had never seen before. She had been to Paris many times, but she didn’t recognize the neighborhood she was in.

The bench looked welcoming enough though and she sat down, watching the crowd around her.

She saw familes with young children, couples laughing, smiling, kissing. She wondered if a normal life would ever happen for her. If she could settle like they did, get married, find someone who was normal too. That seemed like half of her battle, finding that normal person.

She wondered what she looked like to all these normal people. A beautiful skinny blonde girl, dressed in a colourful dress that could be worn on the beach or to a cocktail party, with bright purple shoes and a patent black leather YSL tote. Did people think she was a model? Did people think she looked sad? Or did they envy her perfect looking life?

The sun was almost gone now, the dusk settling on the park left her a bit uneasy, especially when she remembered that she didn’t know where she was. But still she sat. Waiting.

“Mademoiselle? Mademoiselle?”

Celine looked over her shoulder to see a dark haired Frenchman looking at her curiously. She told him that she had lost her bearings and wasn’t sure where she was, and they started to walk. His name was Marco, he was going to a party for a friend who had written a book, and was very well dressed.

And then Celine stopped him. They were right in front of Hermes. She knew exactly where she was now. She was in front of Hermes with Marco, in Paris, and she was going to a party with him. She was a little hungry so they had a small snack at an Escargot restaurant and went to the party.

She had a fabulous time, and the night ended with her going home to Marco’s beautiful penthouse apartment, after much insistence from him that she shouldn’t waste money on a hotel room and that she could have her own bed in his house.

She awoke the next morning in Marco’s large bed to the smell of coffee and strawberries and crepes. She spent the day shopping with him, as her luggage was stolen and she had no clothes to wear.

The following week she posed in those clothes for Harry and Frederik, who styled and photographed her for a full two days.

And Celine was saved once again.

One Day in Paris

July 22, 2008

I spent one day in Paris last month. One miniscule day in which I took over 100 pictures of the sights of the city of my dreams. It was beautiful, romantic, and rainy – which made it even more romantic as it was a warm, light rain. I went to a cafe and had a latte and a crepe. I went to the Eiffel Tower and kissed underneath it. I went to the Louvre and looked at amazing pieces of art.

I had lunch in front of the Notre Dame – at a really touristy restaurant where drinks came with sparkly straws and the waiter thought that we were Italian and speaking to us in a broken down Ital-French language.

It was simply amazing.

More from Europe coming soon…