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Saorge: Returning to the Familiar

Have you ever loved a town so much that you wanted to visit it again and again?

For me, that place is Saorge.

A couple of years ago, when I visited Provence with my family, I stumbled onto this tiny town, call the Tibet of France, on the border of Italy and France. There was just something magical about the town that kept me fixated on it for all the years since. I promised myself I would return, and now I finally have.

When I began planning my yoga retreat in Provence, I knew without a doubt that I absolutely had to fit in a visit to Saorge. It was a priority.

And so here I am, in my mountains, happy as a clam (better analogy needed; I’m allergic. Maybe happy as a…cat?).

And yet I almost didn’t make it. I thought that I would be taking the train here from Ventimiglia, just inside Italy’s border, but it turned out to be a bus. Then I thought the bus would take me to the train station, but it didn’t. It dropped me on the side of the road, and only because I realized where I was (past the station) and asked the driver if he was going to the train station. No.

And so I clumsily descended from the bus on the side of the road with my bags. Fortunately, my Airbnb host, Sophie, was quick to snatch me up from the gas station where I was perched.

It didn’t matter that things didn’t go according to plans. They rarely do when it comes to travel. But as the bus veered around the careening road, I looked up and saw this village on the hill and my eyes welled up with tears. It’s good to be home, if only a temporary one.

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