This morning we were grateful that this, viewed from our lodgings, turned out to be fog and not rain
D2 was grateful that these stairs were at the beginning of the day, and not the end, otherwise I may have stamped my foot, and thrown a tantrum and refused to go any further! Thank goodness we couldn’t see into the future!
I wonder if anyone has noticed that while I have waxed lyrically about flowers, fields, mountains, valleys and tree-lined paths, I have not mentioned the fresh clean country air. That’s because most of the Camino has been accompanied by the rather sour and sometimes fetid smell of animals
The fog lifted, the sun shone and the Camino was alive with the chatter and laughter of groups of pilgrims who joined the Way in Sarria. It’s been quite a long time since we’ve seen large groups of pilgrims, they have either spread out to walk at their own pace, or have left the Camino for one reason or another. I have become used to the quiet solitude of the recent Camino, the crunch of boots on the path, the click clack of walking sticks, the birds, the murmur of pilgrims walking past, then fading into the distance.
“Who are these people?” said the devil on my shoulder? “They’re not really pilgrims, look at their tiny little backpacks, and clean boots. They don’t have dirt splattered up the legs of their pants. No-one’s limping or hobbling, they are not real pilgrims.”
“Everyone does their own Camino” the Angel reminded me. “No matter how long or short, everyone’s Camino is unique.”
I amused myself for a while deciding how you could tell who was a ‘real’ pilgrim and who was ‘pretend’
A real pilgrim tramped right on through the mud, whilst pretend ones picked their way delicately around the edges
I could continue on but the Angel is reminding me that a true pilgrim does not judge anyone else’s Camino. Except I will say that the guy who dragged his walking sticks along the road when he wasn’t using them was exceedingly annoying and I wanted to punch him on the nose.
Since Sarria we had been counting down the kilometres to the magic 100. D2 decided it was more fun to celebrate 101 km
Whatever the number, how amazing that we have come this far, we are still getting up each morning and heading off, admittedly with increasingly battered feet and tired legs. And in three or four days it will be over!
The rest of the afternoon was quite pleasant but tiring and I was looking forward to a rest. The road into Portomarin was very steep but I hoped that the D2 had found us somewhere on the Camino route that was easy to get to. She rang to say she had found somewhere and asked if I had reached the steps yet. Steps???? There was a pause when I asked if there were lots of steps, which she then ignored and said brightly she would meet me there.
But wait, there was more….before the steps which I could see in the distance, there was a long, high, narrow bridge over the river.
The steps were a killer