October 12: Another long day. We only made 28 of our intended 30 km. It was a beautiful walk today under cloudy skies and some rain. Most of the way we walked alongside a minor highway and along a small river but it was very beautiful, mountainous country. The last 8 km was a gruelling climb on rocky trails.
We stopped for a drink at this tiny village at the only restaurant/albergue. As we were leaving, the owner came out speaking in rapid Spanish. We managed to make out that he was saying there may be no room at the only albergue in O’Cebreiro. He then tried to phone them but could get no answer. By this time we were more than ready to stop walking and got two of his last three beds. Good decision.
Our room mates are an older couple (like me) from Ohio, Tom and Pattie, and a younger woman, Suzanne, from Austria. Tom is like a big, friendly, outgoing dog, immediately offering personal information and asking us about ourselves. He spent 28 years in the Defense Department both in uniform and in administration, and he immediately pointed out that as far as he knew he hadn’t directly killed anyone. An interesting way to introduce yourself. Then he talked about how stupid it was to go into Iraq. Pattie seems really nice, too. Suzanne walked 40 km today, which boggles my mind.
This was their second time walking the Camino, the first being two years ago. Pattie said that when she got home she never wanted to put on a backpack again. But here they are, two years later.
Today is Spanish National Day (like Canada Day, I presume) and the restaurant was full of revellers with an accordion player and dancing and singing. Everyone was happy and having a good time. It was noisy but great! The food was excellent, too. We guess that most of the village was in the restaurant which is not that big.
Tomorrow is a lighter day. We enter Galicia just up the road and 23 km should see us caught up to our schedule. It is mostly either level or downhill and the weather looks to be improving for the next week or more. Two days to Sarria where I meet my sweetie!
Not much more to report today — just an enjoyable walk and some good company.