Monday, July 21, 2008
Welcome to the Hostel Cassis
[and it's not blood. it's cherry juice. best. cherries. ever.]
I get into Cassis, finally, exactly 24 hours late.
The tourist office is closed and the phone at the hostel isn't answering. I have to buy groceries and find the hostel before dark.
Let me explain:
Cassis Youth Hostel is situated on top of a mountain an hour hike outside the city of cassis. It runs on well water and self-generated energy. You must bring your own food to cook in the kitchen. Check in time is between 6-9 PM.
I get a map from a nearby hotel, applaud my thinking skills and set out to where I think I'm supposed to go...
About an hour later, I'm sweaty and scared walking on the side of a highway.
THIS WAS NOT THE RIGHT WAY. DUH.
From this point it takes 2 hitched rides with strange men and a few rather confusing incidents- but I arrive.
It is a fucking paradise. Mike benko's sister was right on.
Quaint yellow building.
In the middle of a nature reserve.
Overlooking the town.
Overlooking the water.
Vines and figs and candelit tables.
Old men reading.
Me eating in wonder-lust.
The water is a 40 minute hike, but there are no beaches. Just calanques- rock cliffs directly to the water.
You spend all day reading, hiking, swimming, sunbathing on rocks, cooking delicious meals and drinking french wine.
I stayed three nights. Learning how to use wine to make my food. Learning to cook for one. Dancing under the moonlight to the hostel cassis version of "hotel california". Smoking joints and picking berries for dessert.
it's no wonder people who discover this place come back year after year and never forget it.
come with me, next time.