28 March 2009

lesson learned for traveling

I found myself in the south of France celebrat- ing a friend’s wedding and wanted to explore the coast a little bit. I drove from the small town of Antibes west along the shore staying as close to the coast as possible stopping for coffee in Marseille and lunch in Mont- pellier. I toured the old castle of Carcassonne, Cathedrals of Toulouse, visited new friends in Toulouse, stayed in a wonderful little resort hidden in the hills above Nimes, and for two nights slept by the Sea in the tiny little town of Collioure.

My guide book brought me there as a special beach town not unlike St. Tropez before it got commercial. Granted, now was not the season for lying on the beach as you can tell from my photographs but it was beautiful none the less.

I had booked a hotel with my French speaking friend back in Antibes but as the day was drawing to a close and I seemed lost in the endless barrage of round-a-bouts in Perpignan, I was about to give up and seek shelter elsewhere. Sometimes my stubbornness pays off as it did that evening pushing for this hidden gem of a town taking my skeleton key from the innkeeper and walking along a narrow aisle of stone built up over rocks on the Mediterranean as the sun set. My small room only fit a tiny sink mounted to the wall, a molded chair, and a queen size bed facing the shutter like doors that took up

almost the whole wall overlooking the Sea. There were two sets of doors, one made o

f glass panes that latched without locking, and an inner set made of solid wood with a sturdy lock.

The light hung in the sky providing a calming vista of the rolling waves lapping the shore below me. My eye lids grew heavy as I

watched the waves roll in. How special it would be to awaken in the

morning with this same view? I was traveling alone and didn’t quite feel comfortable to

sleep with only the glass door unlocked as it was.

Shutting the inner doors would completely obscure my view. It was a quandary. I searched

the room for some sort of barrier or rope to secure the door. For a few minutes I found myself following the telephone cord to see how easy it might be to pull up and wrap over the door knobs. I wasn’t planning on using the phone, but of course if someone were to try and break into the room so easily spied upon, I just might need the phone. It was this experience that leads me to pack 10 feet of twine on every trip because you just never know.