Y.CO MONACO

As I stood on the terrace with pink bubbles in hand it was hard not to reflect upon the story an acquaintance had once regaled me with.

Words by: DUNCAN QUINN

As I stood on the terrace with pink bubbles in hand it was hard not to reflect upon the story an acquaintance had once regaled me with. He lives in the penthouse next to where I was standing.So it was difficult to caste it out of mind as I beheld the mayhem before me.

It was the story of a man who owned a donkey. And a small pirate enclave claimed by a piratical family in the mists of time. One which had finagled its place into history as a sovereign state.And maintained its place in global affairs through a shrewd deal with a financier who propped up its broken bank in exchange for some of its spoils.

The man with the donkey carried supplies from the craggy cliffs above down into the plateau by the water. And bit by bit he acquired the real estate along the front of what became the port.

The port was Monte Carlo. And the man with the donkey did well.

I’m not sure what the moral of the story is, if there even is one, except that it seemed that such a fantastical display of wealth probably deserved such a fantastical story.

For laid out in front of us as we stood twenty feet or so from the track watching the Monaco Grand Prix and looking down upon a neatly parked row of gin palaces were the good, the bad and the ugly of global society. Crammed into a few square miles and inhabiting every inch of real estate from which anyone could view the blur of high octane fuel and rubber below.

It’s always great to be able to experience first hand magical things which provide stories for lunch.And this was no exception.With the whole of Monaco on lock down for the Grand Prix you can’ teven get close without a pass provided by the principality granting access into the parts of town where the race will take place. If you’re lucky enough to know a man who can, as I do, it can make for some very interesting conversations indeed.

Which is what brought me to Y.CO for some bubbles, ringing ears, and lots of excited smiles. A Mecca of petrol and excess.

Through false starts, accidents and pace cars we ogled and pondered the prowess of the pilots pushing themselves around the road track at speeds well in excess of the speed limit. In the end it was less about who won than about being there. Like being at a certain place, at a certain point in time in history.

Words by DUNCAN QUINN