Salceda To Lavacolla

Day Fifty Two. 20.3 K., 12.6 Mi.

Written on June 20, 2014.

We are a day closer to Santiago de Compostela! We have chosen to spend the night in Lavacolla so that we will have a short walk into Santiago in the morning. Much of the walk today was through eucalyptus groves.

A creative bench in a grove.

A tractor and a “trailer” on the Camimo.

Vern, Angel, and I love to see furry friends. Today I saw a beautiful Cocker.

A Cocker with a mission.

As I made my way down a mountain and finally made it to level ground I saw a beautiful waymarker. I was ready to take a photo when a Pilgrim motioned to me that he would take the photo of me and the waymarker.

Thanks to the Pilgrim from France for taking this photo.

 

Rabanal del Camino To El Acebo

Day Forty Four. 20.6 K., 12.8 Mi.

Written on June 12, 2014.

The walk out of Rabanal del Camino is uphill and uphill some more! Almost 5 miles of walking uphill. We chose to walk on the road for most of the way to La Cruz de Ferro. While on the road I heard an unusual sound behind me. I turned around just in time to see two Pilgrims using their walking sticks to push a Pilgrim in a wheel chair up the steep hill. I asked them if it was ok to take a photo….they chose not to have a photo taken. As much as possible I ask for permission to include photos of people in my blog.

Cruz de Ferro has become a personalized symbol for many Pilgrims. What I mean is: some Pilgrims walk hundreds of miles with a stone or some other lightweight remembrance of home or of a loved one.

Tony Chapin was my boyfriend throughout high school. We had a son together and over the years we were friends and support for each other. In 2012 Tony gave me a Disabled American Vets Patch to place just below the cross in Cruz de Ferro. For this Camino Tony sent me a custom made bead, locally made where he lives in Alaska. I received the bead in the mail…..Tony passed away four days later. I had promised to leave the bead for him. I believe that it was his way of being a part of our journey.

The bead Tony sent me.

Placing the bead at Cruz de Ferro.

Vern placing a rock from a beach in Crescent City, California.

Barbara and Angel preparing to place their momentos.

Angel and I on our way to El Acebo.

The first sight of El Acebo.

 

Villar de Mazarife to Astorga

Day Forty One. 32.0 K., *19.9 Mi.

Written on June 9, 2014.

*I mentioned in an earlier post that I am relying more on my pedometer than the accuracy of the mileage in my guidebook. Today we saw a woman with a spray paint can painting yellow arrows on the road in the opposite direction of the already established arrows….she sprayed silver paint over the yellow arrows already in place. I will no longer make a note that I am using the mileage from my pedometer.

Storks on top of a water tower.

I have heard many times on the Camino that you always see the same person twice. I am not sure how many times we have seen Steve Allen from Michigan but many days have passed.

Vern and Steve Allen.

Vern had just stepped outside of a bar in Hospital de Orbigo to speak to Angel on the phone when Steve walked by. Everyone has a “story” of challenge and triumph….Steve is no exception. He had been dealing with a strained leg when he had devised a system to elevate his leg in an Albergue.

A creative waymarker area.

A donation stand on the way to Astorga.

The man in the yellow shirt on the right and some friends have set up a food/beverage stand for all Pilgrims!

 

Rest Day Leon

Day Thirty Nine.

Written on June 7, 2014.

This was not a planned rest day. Yesterday after arriving in Leon: Vern, Angel, and I met up with Jim from Florida. We wanted to spend some time with Jim. He walks faster than us…this was a great opportunity to see him. There was a festival in Leon. Some vendors were passing out food samples. Vern ate some chorizo from a sample plate. A few hours later he was sick. We had reserved a room for one night, not two. When it seemed that we would need two nights the receptionist said they were completely full for the next night. I did not know it but she continued to try to find us a room in “sold out” Leon. In the morning she informed me that she found us a room…just a 5 minute walk. Thank you La Posada Regia for taking good care of us.

Angel and I made sure that Vern had everything he needed. We went out looking for ginger ale. While we walked around we saw more festival activity.

Festival “Knights”.

An herb stand.

A “ride” for kids.

 

Terradillos de los Templarios To Bercianos Real Camino

Day Thirty Six. 25.1 K., 15.6 Mi., (my pedometer).

Written on June 4, 2014.

Not long after we left Terradillos there was a small Labyrinth on the side of the trail. A great way to start a day of walking…walking a Labyrinth. I was focused on saying mantras and being grateful for all of my experiences. Thanks to anyone and everyone who created the Labyrinth.

After our first break Vern walked ahead to Sahagun. While I was walking two women were passing me. I greeted them and noticed that one of them had a very cool band on her hat. I complimented her hat and they both proceeded to tell me what they were doing and why they were walking.

Sidney and Izabela walking for children in Africa.

A placard on the back of each woman's backpack.

To find out more: “like” and follow them at: Facebook.com/walkforhopeofchildren. Also, more info at: clotheavillagenow.com.

A bridge on the way to Sahagun.

Today Angel left Terradillos after us, passed us, and arrived in Bercianos with plenty of time to settle in to the Albergue Santa Clara and get acquainted with more Pilgrims.

A card “magic” trick performed by Ruben. Angel, where is the 9 of hearts?

A sign at a bar in Bercianos.

 

Belorado to San Juan de Ortega

Day Twenty Eight. 26.6 K., 16.5 Mi.

Written on May 27, 2014.

The above distances are what Vern and Angel walked. When I woke up at the Albergue I was not feeling well. At breakfast all I felt like having was tea. Thanks Angel for bringing it to my bed! I started walking with every intention of getting to San Juan de Ortega.

An ancient Hermitage on the way to Villafranca de Oca.

Vern and Angel were already in Villafranca de Oca taking a break with Sonja and Izzy when I arrived. By this time I was not feeling much better. Several people started telling me that Sonja, Izzy, and Monica, among others, were going to take the bus. Angel and Vern suggested that I follow them to the bus stop and go ahead to San Juan de Ortega to take care of myself. As I was walking up the road toward the bus stop I became sick on the side of the road….thanks Sonja, Izzy, and everyone who helped me at that moment!

When the bus arrived Monica was speaking to the driver. Monica lives in Guatemala and speaks fluent Spanish. She told me that the bus does not go to San Juan de Ortega but somewhere in between there and the next Camino village.

I sat back and was very grateful that I would be getting off the bus with Monica….not really sure where that would be. When the bus stopped only Monica and I got off, everyone else was going to Burgos. We were not even in a village, we were left in front of a few structures. Monica listened carefully and heard voices. She walked toward a couple unloading their car. She spoke with them for a few minutes with a lot of pointing and and head nodding. I heard them say that there were no taxis in the area and no way to get to Ages, the closest village to them. San Juan de Ortega was at least 7K from them, Ages only 2K. I just said to myself, “I am safe and I'm with Monica”. The woman motioned for us to follow her. She pointed down a dirt road in the middle of fields. Monica and I walked at least a mile until we reached Ages.

Ages, Spain.

A church on a hill on the way to Ages.
When we reached the Albergue in Ages Monica got in line to check into the Albergue. She decided to stay there. I was still comtemplating how I was going to get to San Juan de Ortega. I had the phone number for the Casa Rural that we had reservations at. Monica was kind enough to speak to the owner when he answered. Within ten minutes I had a ride to San Juan de Ortega. Today I walked 9.4 miles.
An Angel named Monica!
 
 

 

 

Santo Domingo de la Calzada to Belorado

Day Twenty Seven. 25.1 K., 15.6 Mi.

Written on May 26, 2014.

There are a few villages on the way to Belorado today. It helps to have a place to sit and have coffee or juice every few miles. Angel has met an American from Michigan, Steve Allen.

Vern, Angel, a cat, and Steve Allen.

Most of the way today I walked by myself. Vern and Angel were walking ahead to Belorado. Two Pilgrims were hitchhilking. The husband's leg was hurting, he thought it would injure his leg more to walk the two miles to Belorado. One of the owners of Albergue Cuatro Cantones drove from Belorado to pick them up.

The entrance to Albergue Cuatro Cantones, Belorado.

Most of the landscape today looked like this.

Belorado is a city with many murals throughout. Some are very sophisticated. Some are intricate and some are tags.

A beautiful mural in Belorado.