First of all we are now under 90 km to go! Can’t believe it and also lots of people walking with day packs and transporting “living items” via muchila transport or private transport. Today we started earlier after a delish breakfast and wonderful coffee. I really and truly could have lingered over the coffee much longer. And another cup would have been equally nice. However, a very nice climb awaited us. A climb that started right out of the city proper and kept going until 12:30. That’s 4 1/2 hours of asphalt – mostly – and uphill. But we were blessed with overcast skies and a really nice breeze. The countryside was a nice distraction while moving slowly upward. Again, the hydrangea and wisteria continue to amaze me with both their color and abundance.
Almost immediately we ran into the “New York” group. But come to find out, after walking with most of them on and off all day, they’re all from Kentucky. Just Holly, who is riding a bicycle and ” sheparding” them lives in New York. They all attend the same church in Lexington. They are a group of 14 strong with a couple mother daughter couples, several husband and wife duos and “some party busters”. Due to the large number in the group they started stringing out almost immediately. We walked with, between and amongst them most of the day. They are all super nice and enjoyable company with which to walk. Fortunately cafes were spaced a relatively good distance apart today for water and restroom breaks. It just makes life much easier than carrying 4 pounds of water and finding bushes. I’ve also noticed the closer we get to Santiago not only the more pilgrims but the more cafes. Still probably less than 10% of the number of pilgrims we saw/met last year on CF.
After the stroll uphill all morning we were rewarded with the downhill slide. I truly don’t mind going up but down for me is a hot mess. I feel off balance with the pack and toes and knees are being asked to do waaay too much work. Let the quads do the work. We detoured through the small city of Redondela to go uphill to a church, which dates to the 15th century. Th statue above circular window is of Santiago Matamoros and the church is very emblematic of the Camino with shells, walking staffs and peregrinos. It’s a beautiful church that is well used by the community, which does my heart good to see it being used daily.
Going down the hill we saw Anna and Gunnar from Denmark. We chatted a bit and continued on our way. Since Redondela only has municipal albergues we are staying off the beaten path at the beach. Too bad my poor feet cannot tolerate the sand or the heat right now. Gadgetman stayed busy talking sports with one of the Kentucky men and is learning to slow down because it’s not a race but a journey.
The small place we’re staying tonight serves dinner starting at 7:30 – we’ll be there with bells on believe me! One of the sisters where we stayed last night gave each of us a granola bar as we were leaving this morning. It was a wonderful afternoon snack but I’m ready for a meal. As I’m writing the blog a couple of women came in to inquire about dinner. We started talking to one of the ladies and they are a group of moms walking with their teenage children. They’re all friends or related. Carmen went to Berkley and her husband to Univ San Francisco. They met in college and have lived in Texas, 2 sons born in California and Cinncinati as well as Paris. They’re a very international family for sure. There are 14 teenagers walking with them, 12 boys and 2 girls. Tonight might prove to be interesting. Very sweet women and the kids all seem very polite. What an experience to walk this with your kids. Teenage kids – I cannot imagine. But they walked the last 100 km of CF last year and said it went well and was a learning experience for the kids.
Watching the calm peaceful blue waters, drinking a glass of local delicious wine and shivering in a long sleeve pull over. Feet are resting as Gadgetman is charging electronics and “Life is Good”.
Until tomorrow y’all
Evidentially some people think Texas Rocks. The brave women walking the last 100 km of the CP with their teenagers.
Yes that is the hill we came over today.