Day 42 - Porto, Portugal to Vila Do Conde

Date: June 15, 2015

Location: From: Porto, Portugal  To: Vila Do Conde

Mileage: 22.1 km

Weather: Beautiful blue skies with a nice gentle breeze coming in off the ocean

Temperature: 66° F

Lodging and Cost: Bellamar Hostel - 40 €

GPS Location: ’41.352008” N and ’ -8.740857” W

Highlights: Walking along the coast all day long watching people play on the beach

Summary of the Day: 

I would like to say I woke up at 7:00 a.m. as I had planned, but the truth of the matter is I was pretty much awake off and on all night. First of all, I had no dinner the night before because the restaurant was closed as it was Sunday and secondly, there weren't any places around the hotel because it was pretty much in a residential neighborhood. Even the little neighborhood cafes were all closed because it was Sunday, so there was NO MEAL FOR ME!

I had to figure out how to get to the subway train and get all the way across the city to where I was going to pick up the trail at the beach. I was mildly uncomfortable with the neighborhood and walking the streets with a pack on your back pretty much leaves you defenseless should something happen. The other thing was, even after I found the subway, what did I do with it. I didn't speak Portuguese nor read it either, so I needed to try and figure out which train to take and exactly where to get off.

At any rate I got up and got myself ready to go and then went to the hotel restaurant to eat their breakfast. I had two bowls of corn flakes and a slice of toast with jelly, along with coffee and orange juice. I asked the woman that was running the breakfast, in both Spanish and English, how much is breakfast and both times she said 7.50, which was exactly what time it was. At least ways I got the right answer, but to the wrong question. Oh well!

I finally made my way out of the hotel and started walking to the Metro station to find a train. It was a nice walk and I then felt perfectly safe. When I got there it was like I thought it would be: completely automated and in Portuguese. As I stood there staring at the machine this woman comes up and in English asked if I needed help. There was a very quick response of “YES” that came from me and she took over and in a matter of minutes she had me a ticket with instructions on what train to get on and where to get off. This was great, maybe it was going to work out after all. I got on the train and followed her instructions to the letter and within about 40 minutes I was at my stop. I got off but then I needed to find the beach.

Soon I saw the lighthouse in the distance and knew that it had to be the beach and in no time I was on my way. I found the first way marker, but unfortunately it was one of only three that I saw today. I did know that the trail stayed right on the beach all the way to Vila de Conde so I wasn’t worried. I didn't see any other Pilgrims on the trail so I figured that I might be the only one coming this route. I just kept going. After my experience in Porto this was a delightful change. The water was a deep blue and the sands were really white and the sky didn't have a cloud in it. There were people scuba diving out just past the waves and kids playing on the beach. The groups of kids playing were like school groups on a field trip. Each group wore a different color hat. There were blue, orange, red, and green groups. They were all about 5 or 6 years old. It was fun to watch them all run up and down the beach and nobody went near the water, probably because it was so cold. 

After a while I thought I saw another hiker ahead so I sped up a little to try to catch up. It’s a funny thing on the Camino... you don't know if they are Pilgrims or not, or if they speak English. I finally caught up and it turned out to be a woman and she was hiking the Portuguese way. She was from Sweden and spoke English. We walked the rest of the day together and got into town about 2:30 and went to our own Hostels, but agreed to meet for dinner around 6:30. We met up and headed around this little town looking for some place to get a meal. We found a nice little restaurant down by the harbor and the owner came out and greeted us and went over the menu, so we decided to stay. I had a hamburger which was huge! It had, I'd say a 1/3 of a pound of beef and bacon, lettuce, tomato and something that I had never had before, a fried egg on top. Still nobody puts mayo, mustard or ketchup on their food. This was a great meal. I couldn't believe it was only 11.00€ and the I had a glass of wine which was only 1.80 €. A friend of mine told me that in the states he had paid as much as $8.00 a glass. After dinner we decided that we'd meet on the square of the little town at 6:30 in the morning and walk together tomorrow.

All in all this day, which started out a little nerve racking turned out to be a great day. I found the trail, I walked a beautiful beach, I met someone to hike with and in the end I had a great meal. Dare I say that Forest Gump was right, “Life is like a box of chocolates... you never know what you're gonna to get.” That’s what today was. Well I guess that about sums it up for now so I'll say …Buen Camino from the Portuguese Way.

Day 41 - Santiago to Porto, Portugal

Date: June 14, 2015

Location: From: Santiago To: Porto, Portugal

Mileage: About 143 miles by bus

Weather: Pretty and warm, a few showers while on the bus

Temperature: 66° F

Lodging and Cost: Hotel Miradouro - 39€

GPS Location: ’41.155643” N and ’ -8.602561” W

Highlights: Not many – whizzed by too fast

Summary of the Day:

I got up at 6:00 this morning and started to get ready and see what I could find for some kind of lodging when I got to Porto. I had picked a few places out last night but hadn’t finalized on any of them. All I could do was look at pictures and prices and see what they said was the location. I was trying to get where my friend and his wife stayed last year but it was full so I picked a place that was 1.8 Km from them. They said theirs was nice, clean and reasonably priced and from what they indicated they walked around the town.

I left one of the best hotels that I stayed at on the Camino and walked up to the bus station to catch my 10:00 bus. We started loading at 9:30 and left promptly at 10:00. We were a packed house for sure. It was similar to a milk run because we made a number of stops along the way, but after three hours we finally got to Porto.

The driver pulled in and stopped, opened the door and said "Porto." I didn’t know if it was Centro (center of town) or not. I had to ask someone who was a local that was getting off the bus and they told me "yes." Well if this is the center of town I don’t want to be put out in their industrial neighborhood. There were a number of cabs sitting there and I knew that I was going to need one and I better hurry up because they were going fast. I went up to one cab driver and asked in Spanish if he was available and he just said something I didn’t understand but opened his trunk for me to put my stuff in. I did and ask "hablas Espanol?", "speak English?" Again nothing. I then said, "Portugue?" and he shook his head and responded something else that I didn’t understand. I was beginning to have a very bad feeling about this. I had a piece of paper that I had written the name and address of this hotel on and showed it to him. I pointed at him and the address and he indicated get in. I was beginning to feel like I was back in the Stone Age with grunts and groans.

I got in and he took off like he was off to the races. I want to tell you I was more than a little nervous. We blew threw the city and out the other side and then into the historical side of town. I was beginning to think that I had made a mistake on this hotel, but who knew? Surely not me. After what seemed like a long time riding,he pulls through another sort of residential neighborhood and stops at this hotel. I wasn’t even sure if they had a room or not because I couldn't book in advance. I indicated for him to wait for me and I went in to ask. They had two double rooms and the one single, which was on the floor below the kitchen. She said that it might be a little noisy until 10:00 p.m. So I took the double, but it still only has one bed. It makes you wonder! Anyway I’ve got a place to stay tonight. The television doesn't work, but I don't understand a lick of Portuguese anyway. I went for a short walk and there is only a couple of neighborhood restaurants here and the rest is row housing. This just goes to show you that you can't believe all the things on either.

Tomorrow morning, long after daylight breaks, I’ve got to walk to the Metro station and catch a subway to get to the coast and pick up the trail and start walking, fast, very fast. I want to get back to Spain where I speak the language atleastways functionally. I think I’m about 4 to 5 days out. I know it will get better once I'm out of the big city, but it's a little frustrating at the moment. Oh yeah the restaurant is closed because it is Sunday. So how bout those apples! Oh well that’s about all that's happened today… and so it goes and a new adventure begins! And with that I will say…Buen Camino?

Day 40 - Santiago

Date: June 13, 2015

Location: Santiago de Compostela

Mileage: 0 km

Weather: Overcast and cool and looking like rain

Temperature: 55° F

Lodging and Cost: Hotel Rua Villar - 75€

GPS Location: ’42.879848” N and ’ -8.544221” W

Highlights: Venturing around the city all day and laying around resting.

Summary of the Day:

Well today was a kind of a do nothing, rest day. I had planned it to do nothing and just lay around which I did. First I woke up at 4:45 as usual, but didn't get up. I tried to go back to sleep but that didn’t happen for a while. I heard Ross and Athenia’s cab pull up so I got up and looked out the window to the street and saw them waiting on Mahala and her friend to come up. They were sharing a cab to the airport. I looked down and saw them get in and as the cab started to pull away I slowly waved goodbye to them as they went up the street. It was a little sad knowing that I was pushing on alone, but that’s the way it always is. We have talked about going to Scotland and walking the Coast to Coast Trail sometime soon or possibly Ross and I will hike the John Muir Trail. I do hope that we can hike again sometime as they were fun and I really enjoyed their companionship.

Anyway I laid back down and dozed until about 8:30 a.m. and then got up and got ready to go eat breakfast. I went for a short walk around town and then went back to the Oficina de Peregrino’s and bought two new Credentials for the Portugue’s route and the route to Finisterre and Muxia. I walked up to the bus station and got information on the bus to Porto tomorrow and bought my ticket so I’m set for that at 10:00 in the morning. I don’t know exactly where the bus will let me off in Porto or exactly where I will stay. All I know is that I leave at 10:00 and get there at 12:00 and the rest is by the seat of my pants. I did find out that I have to take a 40 minute bus ride on the metro to get to the coastal trail and then walk 22 km first day to find a place to stay, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

I came back to the room and studied for a while and worked on the Camino Portugue and didn’t leave again until I went to dinner. I found a nice pizza parlor where I had a veggie pizza and it was just what I wanted. I will pack up in a little while and then watch some Spanish television. Right now there is a Steven Segal movie in Spanish on so I will probably watch that. It has been a very slow day on several levels. One I’m not walking and and two I’m in town without friends, and it’s raining. Tomorrow is kind of exciting, I’ll get to see new places and things and the Camino continues. With that there isn’t anything else to report so I’ll just say…Buen Camino!

Day 39 - Lavacolla to Santiago

Date: June 12, 2015

Location: From: Lavacolla To: Santiago

Mileage: 12.3 km or so the book says. It seems like only about 6.0 km.

Weather: Overcast and cool, but no wind

Temperature: Mid 50s° F at 5:30 a.m. and mid 50s° with rain at 4:00 p.m. 

Lodging and Cost: Hotel Rua Villar - 75€

GPS Location: ’42.879848” N and ’ -8.544221” W

Highlights: Finding our way after getting lost, or as I like to say “Misplaced” at 5:30 a.m., the little chapel and statue with Pope John ll about 3 km outside of Santiago, and most of all Santiago and the cathedral.

Summary of the Day:

This day had a strange start to it. We were all up before 5:00 and ready to go by 5:20. The one thing that we didn’t do the day before was to check out the exit strategy to make sure that we had the route laid out for a dark departure. It was pretty simple and I thought I remembered exactly how to turn when we left, but I guess I was wrong. I thought we came out and went straight out to the road and crossed it and then crossed the bridge and back into the woods. After walking around in a circle for about 30 minutes I asked a policeman that was there with someone pulled over if he knew which way the trail went. He stood there and looked up and then down the road and finally pointed up the road and said “That way!" He was right. I asked Athenia if she thought that he had just seen us look every way except for the way he pointed and calculated that if we didn't find it the way we were looking it must be the way he pointed. She doubted it. I think that she was right.

Anyway we were on our way now and much happier and excited to be headed to Santiago for the final day on the Camino de Frances. The trail started an uphill trend to it but we didn’t care, we were on a mission and a little thing like uphill wasn’t going to distract us from our goal. The mantra was Santiago, Santiago, Santiago. It wasn’t anytime at all and we were at the little chapel and the statue of Pope John Paul ll. The chapel was closed. I wanted to get my last on the trail "sello" or stamp there before the final one at the Oficina de Peregrino that certifies the completion of the walk, but that wasn't to happen this day so I settled for one at a little restaurant just inside the city with a final café con leche. It was all good, the café and the stamp.

We arrived at our hotel at 7:45 a.m. and while it was too early to check in, we were able to leave our backpacks at the hotel while we went directly across the street to the office. It was only a few minutes after eight and we only waited a few very short minutes until we were all holding on to our very own Compostela. With our mission complete we turned our attention to FOOD! We went right back across the little street and went in and found a place to sit. It was going to be, eggs, bacon, and bread all around. The food was really good. It wasn’t long and the rooms were ready and they said that our backpacks were in the rooms. I went back and changed my stay to two nights instead of one. I just felt that I would do better on the trail with another day of rest.

After we got settled we all started to take care of our town business that needed to be done. I decided that I would ship my old Keen shoes home that way not only did I not have to carry them anymore, but I wouldn’t have a problem at the airport next month when I leave. I played the hurry up and wait at the Post Office and 26€ later the shoes are supposed to be “Urgently” shipped back home. "Urgent" was the only way they would ship them. I’ve noticed that we have something like that in the U.S. They make you ship "Express" when shipping outside the U.S. It just basically means that you have to declare a value on the items being shipped. I only wonder how much value an old smelly pair of hiking shoes have. I gave it the benefit of the doubt that they have a lot more miles on them and I put 40€. Now the big or bigger question is will they make it home??? Time will tell.

Now that all our work and various business was done, it was down to celebrating the completion of the walk. Imagine walking a total of 815 Km counting the 25 km from St Jean to Roncevalles. We started to meet up with all our friends that we had met along the way, both when we were together and even before we met. It was great. It was a great time. I don’t eat fish or seafood of any kind but I had made my daughter a promise that I would be open to trying some new things this time here, and one of them was eating fish. Well in the past few days I have eaten Paeilla, with all kinds of little sea creatures in it, and clams, Razor Clams, and Calamari, or Squid, so I’ve lived up to my word. I have to admit that not all of it was bad and some was actually really good.

I’m not finished yet because I will be leaving and going to Portugal in a few days to walk the coastal route on the Camino Portugues and there is a lot of seafood to be tried there. There were a lot of folks sitting around talking and eating and having a few drinks, but then about 10:00 it was time to head back to the room and get ready to go to bed. It was time to tell all our Camino friends good bye. Ross, Athenia and myself walked back up the streets to our hotel talking and remembering our incredible journey together and a little sad that it’s time to part and go our separate ways. They are leaving in the morning at 6:00 a.m. to go to the airport so they can fly to Madrid and start another incredible adventure. Athenia is going to meet for the very first time a brother that she never knew she had up until a few years ago. They have been corresponding with one another for several years but have never actually met in person. He is coming from Scotland to spend the day with her. She is excited about this meeting and I am also for her. Even though it is a little sad about the parting, we will stay in touch and are talking about getting together and doing another trail or two in the near future. I enjoyed being with them. We talked and laughed and ate a lot of different things and just enjoyed each other's company.

Today was really a full day and the day off tomorrow for me, before heading to Porto on Sunday morning is very well needed. So with that I will say, that tomorrow the journey continues and we’ll see what happens next. Until then I will bid you a…Buen Camino!

Day 38 - Arzua to Lavacolla

Date: June 11, 2015

Location: From: Arzua To: Lavacolla

Mileage: 29.2 km

Weather: Nice day. Over cast and very cool but not windy

Temperature: mid 50s° F at 5:30 in the morning then in the mid 60s° F 5:00 p.m.

Lodging and Cost: San Paio - 29€

GPS Location: ’42.900492” N and ’ -8.447848” W

Highlights: The beautiful walk both before and after the sunrise along the path. It was a gravel path with a large rock wall, some times as much as 6 feet high or a deep drench that looked like the trail had been dug out.

Summary of the Day:

I woke up this morning at 4:30 a.m., just laid there for about 10 minutes, and then I got up. I was packed up by 5:00 for a 5:20 departure. We have been getting out by 5:30 for a while now and I like it as it is cool to cold and there aren’t too many people on the trail yet. The only down side to this is that there aren't any bars open for café con leche or some kind of breakfast. We slipped out quietly from the Pension at the owner's request and were on our way. It was a great place to stay and I’d recommend it to anybody. It is neat and clean and the price is very reasonable. The one thing about this Pension is that after I settled in the owner came to my room and asked me if everything was ok and if the WiFi was ok? I have never had anything like that happen and I got it all for 25€.

Anyway we moved on quickly and didn’t see a single person. The path was great and it was like walking down a giant ditch but with a good tread way. Finally after about three hours we finally came to a bar that was open and when I went in and asked if they had breakfast the man said yes so I asked for a menu only to be told that there wasn’t a menu only bagged food stuffs (chocolate donuts and junk food) was available. We drank café con leche and left. 

Today's section was chocked full of live stock. We saw some beautiful horses and sheep. There were many cows along the way not to mention cats and dogs. There was one place where a Magpie (bird) chased after a cat. I believe that the bird was twice the size of the cat. The cat ran and every time it stopped the bird would land on it and attack. If it had been a little slower I could have gotten a picture of it. The forests were incredible, some of the biggest trees that I’ve seen in some time. Lavacolla is a small village that has a hotel with a restaurant and two bar/cafes and that is all.

I stayed here two years ago and I thought it was pretty nice. It was kind of funny when we first came into the village you have to come down the street and turn right to go to the hotel and then you go through an archway to get to the hotel and at first glance it looks like the hotel is about to fall down and the windows are all gone including the frames. The hotel is right next to that building and it is attached to the same wall. Athenia asked me if that was the hotel and the look on her face was priceless, but fortunately that wasn’t the hotel. Ross laughed about that. Truthfully two years ago when I first came here it looked like part of the hotel or that the hotel was a slum, but it wasn’t.

After we got in and cleaned up we went to get something to drink and unwind. The rest of the afternoon was just resting and preparing for tomorrow’s early departure for Santiago. We have been hearing of long lines to get our compostela so we want to be there when then open. That is about all the news for today, but will bring you more tomorrow from the big city of Santiago with Compostelas in hand. Until then…Buen Camino!

Day 37 - Palas de Rei to Aruza

Date: June 10, 2015

Location: From: Palas de Rei To: Aruza

Mileage: 28.8 km

Weather: Another beautiful day. A little overcast this morning and cold and very windy. The wind died down as the day progressed and the clouds cleared, but still stayed very coo.l

Temperature: In the low to mid 50s° F at 5:30 a.m. and then 64° F at 7:00 p.m.

Lodging and Cost: Pension Arzua - 25€

GPS Location: ’42.873239” N and ’ -7.869297” W

Highlights: Walking the trails through the woods and seeing all the animals along the way. The old bridges. The flowers that are blooming.

Summary of the Day:

We decided last night that we would get up a little earlier and try to leave by 5:20 a.m. and head out because it was going to be a longer day as well as a higher mileage day. We are trying to set up for an early entry into Santiago on the 12th as Ross and Athenia have to catch a flight on the morning of the 13th and would like to have some time on the 12th to see the city as well as get their Compostela. We have been hearing that the wait at the Oficina de Peregrino could be as much as three hours. We have already reserved our rooms in Santiago so we will go into town and check in and drop our gear and head straight to the office and get in line.

At any rate we were going to be gone in the morning by 5:30 a.m. and walking out of town. It was a little overcast and cold with high winds. We walked for about an hour and then we saw a Bar/Café that was opening, but for café con leche and pastries only, no breakfast. That was ok with us. Ross started to have a little problem with his left leg and it hurt. It was something like a pulled muscle. He took some Advil and after a while it started to ease a little. He wanted Athenia to push on and he would come on, but that wasn’t going to happen. We were together and planned to stay together to the end. I’ve been with them for a couple of weeks and have been having a good time and I enjoy their company and I want to finish with them. After a while Ross said that his leg was feeling better, but I could still see him favoring it some.

The Brierley book said the the trail was to be level to down hill all day, but that wasn’t true. We had a fair amount of uphill. It wasn’t too bad but Ross was having a little trouble with it. He was able to walk through the pain of it. Athenia has really gotten stronger over the past week. She motored up all the hills we had without a complaint. What a trooper! We started seeing a lot of bars along the way today and stopped at a number of them for café con leche and Athenia and I got an ice cream at one of them. It’s nice to have an ice cream with someone who enjoys ice cream as much as I do.

All in all we pushed on through the day and finally got to Arzua at about 12:45, which was really good considering that we took a lot of breaks and the trail had a few more ups than we expected. A couple of days ago we booked our lodging for tonight. Athenia used her phone and called this Pension here in Arzua by the name of Ultrilla. It was full but told her that she had booked us at a Pension by the name of Arua which was right down the street. Well when we came into town we saw Arua and we saw Ultrilla two doors down, so we went to Arua to check and see if that was in fact the right place. The woman at Arua said that we didn’t have a reservation there and wasn’t too friendly so we headed to the other place and explained it to the lady there only to be told she didn’t have anything for us either. Athenia got her cell phone out and showed her the number that she called and the woman then knew who it was. She called the number and confirmed it for us and then gave us some directions on how to get there. It was about a block away and on the next street over. The owner was waiting outside for us and greeted us as we came up. The place is great and we got our rooms. Mine is 25€, and Ross and Athenia’s is 30€, so we are happy and clean and set up for a good nights rest.

We decided to go out and eat an early Pilgrim’s meal. This was my time to eat sea food. I have been eating tuna, but now Paella for the second time since coming to Spain. It was really good and I ate a lot. Athenia and I split a bottle of white wine with the meal. I also had my standard mixed salad and everything was really good. After we finished lunch/dinner we went out and walked around town for a little while before going back and getting our clothes that we washed from the clothes line.

Now it’s rest time for tomorrow. Today has been a lot of fun and we’ve only got a few more days together on the Camino de Frances and they have to go back to Canada and I leave for Portugal. Tomorrow is another long mileage day so we’ll leave early again. I will fill you in on all the news then. Until then…Buen Camino!

Day 36 - Portomarin to Palas de Rei

Date: June 9, 2015

Location: From: Portomarin To: Palas de Rei

Mileage: 24.8 km

Weather: Overcast with fog early and cool, then clearing in mid day and warm to overcast and sprinkles in the early evening.

Temperature: Upper 50s° F at 5:30 a.m. and Mid 60s° F mid day and mid 50s° F early evening

Lodging and Cost: Pension Casa Curro - 30€

GPS Location: ’42.873239” N and ’ -7.869297” W

Highlights: Today was a beautiful walk from early morning with headlamp climbing out of Portomarin in the fog to walking the level trail along side tall rock walls.

Summary of the Day:

We were all up at 4:50 a.m. and gone by 5:20 a.m. As you remember from yesterday the three of us, Ross, Athenia, and myself, shared the room last night. I believe that was the first time in almost two years since I have shared a room with other hikers. Believe it or not, it’s nice to do from time to time as some really good conservations breakout that you might not have otherwise, such was the case last night. We talked about gear and other trails that we had hiked or wanted to hike.

We walked out of Portomarin by the street lights. This is about the best, larger city that I have left that is marked very well. Most only will take you near the city limit and then they don’t give you good markings to get you out so you end up wandering around the streets looking for a marker. We made it back down to the River Mino and crossed up from where we first crossed coming into town. This is a nice mid-sized town and I enjoyed it very much. After we crossed the river we walked up the street for a short distance and then crossed and entered the woods and started up. Soon we started to get into some foggy areas. Up in the distance we saw someone ahead of us, so we knew that we weren’t alone this morning. It wasn’t long before we saw about six more hikers out early this morning. More and more people are starting to leave early for one reason or another, either to beat the heat, which there wasn’t today, or get the jump on other Peregrinos to get a place to stay because they don’t have a place reserved, or lastly they are putting in bigger mileage to hurry up and finish.

In no time we had made it to Gonzar, 8 km up the trail and we saw a Bar/Café open and it was packed with people. We stopped and all had breakfast. I for a change had two eggs, toast, and potatoes with a big glass of orange juice and café con leche. I was stuffed when I finished. We pushed on and had a great time just talking as we walked. On up the trail Athenia saw someone that she knew from early on the trail named Carla. We all paused and talked for a few minutes, and then pushed on. A little while later we came up to the little village of Eirexe and they had a Bar/Café and I think that we all had to go to the bathroom so we stopped and ordered something else to eat or drink. Shortly after Carla came in and stopped to eat breakfast. We spent some time with her talking. She is a nice lady and has written three books; one is a novel. After a while, we all packed up and left.

By this time we were only about 6 km away from our destination so we just pushed into town. At the entrance of the town there was a tourist information booth so we stopped to asked for directions to the Pension where we had reservations. The lady was great and told us exactly where it was. She spoke fairly good English, but still jumped back to Spanish. I used this opportunity to practice some conservational Spanish with her and we talked for a good five minutes or so. I know it doesn’t seem like a lot but every bit helps. She told me that I was doing well and if I stayed in Spain and practiced until the 7th of July I’d be perfect. I know that she was just being kind and that I wouldn’t be perfect if I stayed for another six months, but I do feel like it really is getting better and that I can understand a lot more than before.

Anyway we went on into town and found the Pension. I told the lady that we had reservations for a double and a single. They now had no record of it. I went on to tell them that the lady in Sarria at the hotel called for us two days ago, but nothing. They called some man and he came and couldn’t find it either but they gave us both a room, so all is right with the world, except that we don’t have WiFi, but life is good even without that. After getting settled in and cleaned up we decided to go get something to eat. This is a smaller town than I had remembered. It seemed more like just a strip rather than a town. It had only a few restaurants and several small shops, but it served all our needs.

Today was a really great day for walking. The trail was good and we made good time, and the weather was pleasant too. I hope that the rest of my time in Spain can be like this, but time will tell. Tomorrow is going to be a pretty long day as the crowds will be growing and we’re going to try and position ourselves for Santiago in a few days. We are hearing that the lines to get your Compostela have been as long as long as three hours long. I hope not. Again it is something that we will just have to wait and see. Until then I hope that we all have a…Buen Camino.

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