Bathing Beauty — My Rant Against French Hotel Rooms
Americans aren’t going to like what I’m about to say. But the French do a lot of things much better than we do.
The French are better at cooking. They make more time to celebrate life. Their culture exudes extraordinary art and architecture. Even their dogs have it much better than their American counterparts — as canines are taken everywhere including airports, restaurants, and even fancy hotels.
But one thing the French are miserable at is bathrooms.
That’s right — bathrooms.
Is it too much to ask to get a shower in a $350-a-night hotel room?
I’m currently staying at one of the best hotels on the French Riviera, located right on Promenade de la Croisette, in Cannes. This is the same hotel where all the movie stars and Hollywood people stay in during the famous Cannes Film Festival, which takes place right across the street. This luxury hotel has classic portraits hanging right outside the door of famous people who have stayed in each room. My hotel room has Woody Allen and Orson Wells’ photos out in front. So, I guess that means Woody and Orson once stayed in my room — not together, of course.
Which makes me wonder — how did Orson Wells ever fit inside this bathtub?
Woody Allen — I get that. Well, I can at least visualize it, and the sight is not pretty. But all 400 pounds of Orson Wells? The man was a beast. Fitting him into this bathtub would be like trying to put the cork back on a champagne bottle.
Why the obsession with Orson Wells’ bathing habits? Easy. I’m in the bathroom last night trying to take a shower. Only, I can’t.
There’s no shower curtain. There’s no glass. There’s no source of water, except for the faucet down near the drain plug and a small hand-held metal device they call “a shower.”
But this thing isn’t a shower, at all. It’s more like an oversized Water-Pik.
No doubt, this thing was designed by a masochist. The idea is — you stand up inside the tub. You extend your arm all the way up and hold the “shower” hose over the top of your head. Water barely trickles out, because, you know — there’s hardly any water pressure. Imagine trying to scrub down an elephant with a garden hose.
And forget about actually moving the soap around your body or washing your hair. It’s impossible. I had one hand holding the hose over my head, and the other hand hugging the soap. It was madness.
But what’s most insane of all is, there’s no glass or shower curtain. So, bath water splashes out all over the floor. After my 15-minute attempt at a “shower,” the bathroom floor looked like it was hit by Hurricane Katrina. I’m staying on the third floor, which makes me wonder of the guy on the second floor might benefit from the excess water.
I’m mortified. How can they construct a bathtub like this? Do they think the water will just stay inside the tub all by itself?
And don’t suggest I take a bath instead. That’s not going to happen. I’m a grown man, not a 5-year-old child. What kind of a man takes a bath?
I’m serious. Baths are disgusting. I hate baths. When you are taking a bath all you are doing is laying in the remnants of human bacteria and soap scum. What’s the point of taking a bath? Let’s see — you wash all the filth off your body and then you lay in it for 15 minutes and get out. Aren’t you trying to get all that gunk off your skin, instead of marinating in it?
Well, at least the French did seem to make one improvement to American bathroom. It’s really cool. They made this little bowl of water which is perfect for brushing your teeth. The only oddity is, they built it at toilet bowl level.
Who knows? Maybe Mickey Rooney once stayed in my room, too.