Saturday, July 12, 2008

Marseille and Cassis

Dont ever go to Marseille! We arrived late in the afternoon, couldnt get any parking and were then told all accomodation was booked out for 50km around the city. We had been told there was a bit of an underworld crime thing going on in the city and when we were blocked from going down a thin one way street by a scooter driver we started to see the uglier side of things. After getting out of the cra to deal with the guy an old woman leaned out of a slightly open window and whispered "be careful, he is dangerous". I couldnt reason with the guy who didnt speak english but seemed to think we had caused him to scratch his scooter (he was going the wrong way down the street). Another lady started to act as interpreter saying we should fill out an accident report form (which implies fault) or give him some cash. After i refused a large crowd gathered and the lady put her hands up and left with a worried look on her face. An old man came up to me and kept whispering "police... police". Owen did his best to look tough behind me and i told the guy nothing was happening without the police which were called and must have told the guy to let us go. We then drove out of town and camped on a beach which we had also been told was very dangerous.

Luckily things got alot better when the next day we drove into Cassis which is awsome! A very nice mediterranean town with a beautiful port that is located next to the Calanques. The Calanques are chasms into the limestone headland which create natural ports. The climbing on the limestone here was superb and the water was crystal clear. So we spent three days here relaxing and climbing and are now ready for some more mountains.
The En Vou Calanque:Another of the many Calanques:We are currently back in Chamonix were a leg of the world cup for climbing is on. The weather is not great though so we may disappear at some stage for the Dolomites in Italy. We also have to be at the wedding on the 17th after which all our plans start getting a bit complicated.

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