If a tumultuous past year and a holiday season packed full of socializing has you dreaming of getting off the grid for a while, this Austrian town has a tantalizing offer that might just appeal.
Located in the Austrian state of Salzburg, the town of Saalfelden is soliciting applications for the position of hermit. The right candidate will live in solitude in a 350-year-old hermitage built next to a chapel on the side of a steep cliff.
The Local reports that the successful candidate should have "a Christian outlook," and, perhaps disappointingly for a person hoping to experience total seclusion, "be ready to greet visiting pilgrims and locals."
Local cleric Alois Moser and Saalfelden's mayor Erich Rohrmoser will select the new hermit and The Local reports that, rather than professional experience, "the winning candidate will be chosen more on the basis of personality" — and, perhaps, oddly, looks. Potential hermits are required to submit an up-to-date photo with their resume and a letter explaining why they want the position. The deadline for applications is March 15.
It's only an eight-month commitment, from April through November, but you will have to be prepared to survive with no heating or running water — or, presumably, TV, cell service, or Wi-Fi.
Even though position is sadly unpaid, it is still much sought after by wannabe hermits. In 1970 an unsuccessful applicant for the job was so incensed that he missed out, he fired a shotgun at the hermitage doors. Luckily the resident hermit was uninjured.
Looking for an off-the-grid experience with a shorter commitment? Perhaps you might just check in to one of these remote, but luxe, hotels instead.
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