Excellent pieces about what it’s like to struggle in the Cannes trenches have been written by MSN Hitlist columnist James Rocchi and Awards Daily‘s Sasha Stone. I was going to excerpt Sasha’s Cannes Diary, Day #1 piece yesterday but the moment passed so here’s Cannes Diary, Day #2. (She’s taking excellent photos besides.) And here’s an excerpt from Rocchi’s article, which just went up:

“You could, theoretically, spend hundreds, if not thousands of Euros here daily — a decent upscale meal starts at 18 Euros, and the exchange rate is stiff. But as a member of the press, you try and conserve your cash. Do you go with the only-in-certain-area?s free wi-fi provided by Euro-telecom Orange, or do you shell out the equivalent of $140 for the works-anywhere pay version? [Wells insert: I bought the $140 wifi yesterday and it’s worth its weight in gold.]

“How much free Nespresso can you drink in lieu of paying three times the everyday price for a regular cup of American joe? Just how many people can share a rental flat without going mad like some cruel sociological experiment?

“Worse than the expenses is the cost of time. How early do you have to line up to get into a film you want to (or, if assigned to review, need to) see? Can you put 20 minutes between two films 200 feet apart, or will you be shut out? How can you combine trying to see 3, 4 films a day while not going mad and still having time to write something, anything. The press badges are prioritized by color — Orange, Yellow, Blue, Pink, Pink with a dot (‘Rose et pastill’) and White — and, trust me, this is the time you do want to be Mr. Pink.”