Welcome to my friend, Gibi’s, mountain retreat. It’s an hour hike from the town that captured my heart years ago, Saorge. If you’re hardy enough to make the climb, he’ll welcome you with a glass of homemade grape juice or wine that he toted in his backpack on one of his jaunts up the mountain.

If you’re lucky, he’ll invite you to stay for lunch, but as he preps the outdoor grill, he’ll encourage you to meander down the path among the abandoned houses and derelict church on Paspus. 

When you return, he’ll have a salad made from wild greens he picked on his hike. A few cats may weave through your legs, and he’ll toss them bits of meat to make you laugh as they attack them as if they were fresh kill.

Just don’t stay too long. Because the longer you take in the views and fresh air from that mountain, the harder it will be for you to want to leave.