Still not feeling 100% again, I got on the road at 7:30am and had a pretty good pace. It was to early to pass through the door of forgiveness, so I will have to wait for that till Santiago, I guess 😉
I left this wonderful village surrounded by mountains in all kind of green colors, yes the Meseta brown was getting a bit too much, and set out for the next mountain. 31k stretch going up to 1300m over sea level. My sped was great, and when Francesco passed me for the first time, he was impressed with my improvement, as he had only seen me walk under soo much pain.
There were two routes, one by the river and the road, and the other with a second little mountain to climb. I decided to take the road route to not upset my, finally obedient, feet again. The walk was unspectacular for the first 15k by the road. I had lunch at a highway roadhouse and set out for the last and hardest part of the stretch.
Passing through a small village, I suddenly heated Pauline call my name. She was stranded here, as she two had issues with her feet, and the lady from the local bakery gave her an apartment and told her to stay for two days, when she saw her crawling up the street. I sat with her and we had a nice time catching up.
The mountains ahead looked a bit frightening, but I immediately thought: hey, you crossed the Pyrenees day one with out training this should not be a problem.
The 8km coming up with a 600m ascend were something new though. My legs were trained now, I did not have to stop as often, but it was a really hard climb, very steep and rocky. And as if that was not enough, it got really muddy, that I thought I was going to slip, and slide the whole darn thing back down.
At the end I was in pain, my pace was down to 20-30 Minutes per km, and I was really struggling on the last 3km. Finally my destination came into site! Through the fog I could make out the first buildings.
Now, the next challenge came closer. People had been saying that the municipal Albergue was closed and there were no kore rooms available. And every one I met was panicking. Now I did. here this almost every day, but since I stopped planning three weeks ago, I have always found a bed. The Camino provides!
I got into this wonderful old village on the top of the mountain, and was created by medical sounding music. It was such a beautiful experience, and I set out to find the Municipal Albergue hoping it was open, and that they still had a bed for me.
When I finally found it at the other end of town, I found it to be open, and sure enough I got bed. Tired, and hurting I took a shower, and set of to find food. I met Francesco in a bar with an Irish and an American girl. After a few beers, they convinced me to join them for the pilgrims mass before dinner. Don’t know why, but I quickly decided to follow them, and we set down in the church.
It was a funny and fun experience, and I was even ready to read the German prayer when the pastor asked, but there was this German woman that was really enthusiastic about it, so I did not get the chance.
At the end we all joined in a circle and the pastor prayed for us and our Camino, and we all got a little stone, I think he said as symbol of gods love. It had a little yellow arrow in it, so it is a really nice souvenir.
I even got one of the wafers, though as catholic he probably should even have given it to me, as far as I know they don’t even like to share with Protestants 😉
But it was a fun day, and we went for dinner, and I finally had my Galizien Pulpo. It was great, though I felt pretty sick when we got back and spent quite some time on the toilet. I don’t know if it was the calamari from the truck atop, or the pulpo, but I immediately took an Imodium akut, and am hoping that all will be good tomorrow. Tomorrow is a rather short day, with little over 20km, so I will leave when they kick us out at 8.