We have been MIA the past number of weeks. Truth be told our last month and a bit has been pure insanity. Jameson is traversing time zones and racking up airmiles like a crazy person- not that this is anything new. But between his 90 hours work weeks and flight delays we have also been wrangling some work on our house in Victoria, prepping for the US work visa lottery and grieving the very big loss of my grandpa. We have been having all the big conversations about what comes next for us if I win or if lose the US visa lottery in April. Needless to say our plates have been full.
In the middle of it though we have managed to sneak away with two of our favourite people for the weekend. This group of NYC fam jam is who we do all our travels with, and all we wanted from the weekend was to set time aside to connect with our most cherished. In very un-Renée fashion I had zero plans for our escape other than locating a cabin on AirBnB. Our only goal was to simply press pause for a few brief moments and regain some sanity. We managed to accomplish just that by barely leaving the cabin the entity of the weekend. Instead, we built fires, cozied in under warm blankets and sipped at a glass of wine while we read books. We did switch it up a bit by watching old VHS tapes of 90s rom coms but the climax of our days were long naps, hot baths and home cooked dinners. It was perfection in the truest sense.
Okay now for a little west coast piety. I should preface with the irrefutable fact that the Catskills are beautiful and perfect and wonderful. Each little hamlet is the perfect mix of quaint, quirky and seemingly progressive vibes. However, I had to laugh because prior to our arrival a few people from our neighbourhood kept remarking how huge the Catskills were. However, the west coast has spoiled me entirely because my demarkation for mammoth mountains must have become a little lofty. My ears didn’t even pop on the drive up to our cabin which was nestled near the crest of one mountain. However, what the Catskils lack in west coast size, they make up for in incredibly friendly people, cute cafes and barnone best homemade granola ever.
When we did manage to escape the warm allure of our cabin we explored the villages of Phoenicia, Mt. Tremper and Woodstock. The man at Phoenicia Wine and Liquors was beyond kind and kept us well supplied during our stay. If you are passing through Woodstock, be sure to grab some farm to table bites and good coffee at Oriole 9. Also do not leave without a bag of their homemade granola. It is so flipping good I am half debating driving the 2.5 hours just to procure some more.
However, if you are planning a trip to the Catskills try not to plan at all. Just find a place to set up camp and then take it slow. Go for long walks, mountain hikes and talk to your neighbours. If you take this approach I am confident that you will love your mountain escape.