Thursday, June 2, 2016

A Different Kind of Color

miles of walking
 I arrived in Marseille the morning of March 22, for a week of solo travel before my artist residency at AIR Vallauris, scheduled to start on the 29th
(glad I flew through London and not Brussels....)

I didn't even know about the horrific attack in Belgium until hours later when a friend mentioned it in an email. And it's surprising because when I got to Marseille around 10:30 am, they took a perfunctory glimpse at my passport, didn't stamp it, and when I got my bags, there wasn't even one customs officer in sight....
however, while I was waiting for the bus, a stream of cop cars drove up....who knows

Anyway, nothing seemed out of sorts there

I got the bus to Gare St. Charles and then a taxi to my hotel, Mama Shelter. 
Mama Shelter is conveniently located near the branché Cours Julien, in the artsy Quartier des Créateurs. 
There's a daily market, lots of hipsters drinking cafés and vin and a cool multicultural pierced, 
tattooed Brooklyny vibe, even down to lots of trash on the streets 
and graffiti everywhere (actually the entire city is covered in it) 
Mama is a walk-able distance to Le Vieux Port and Le Panier, if you like to walk.  
 walk I did.....10.76 miles in fact

Vieux Port de Marseille, Marché aux Poissons

That afternoon I
walked around the Old Port and Le Panier, 
I checked out the collection at Le Musée Cantini, and generally got the lay of the land, and water!

André Derain 1907 Pinède à Cassis Musée Cantini

Le Panier
Day 2
I got a good night sleep and at 8:30 am after checking out the market and grabbing a croissant, 
spur of the moment, I hopped on the ferry to Île Ratonneau,  
one of four islands in the Frioul Archipelago, about an hour boat ride away. 

 It was perfect weather and after a few hours and miles of walking, 
up to Fort Ratonneau and l'Hôpital Caroline and all around the calanques
I caught the ferry back to have a traditional bouillabaisse sitting on the quai.
Chez Madie les Galinettes
The bouillabaisse at Chez Madie, came with a warning...
have an appetite!
With the obligatory glass of vin, came a basket of bread and some sort of
anchovy butter 
an immense bowl of fish soup was served, (sans poisson), 
 with a rouille
a mayonnaise made of olive oil, garlic, saffron, and cayenne pepper
  put on grilled slices of baguette to drop into the soup and sprinkle with grated cheese.  
Then came a second immense bowl of the same soup with the same accoutrements 
but also with the FISH
a combo of racasse, gronin, congre, lotte, dorade, et oursins

I ate a lot

miles: 7.8
Other than my French being too rusty, it was good to be back in France

that's when the light bulb went off
the water, the walk, the wine, the bouillabaisse, the sun and the stone 
 A Different Kind of Color

Next: train to