Pamplona to Puente La Reina

Day Twenty. 25.4 K., 15.8 Mi. (Pedometer).

Written on May 19, 2014.

For Vern, Angel, and I this will be our first day walking on the Camino Frances. This Camino is known by several names: one name is the Camino de Santiago.

The view of where have come from.

We walk for several miles ascending up the mountain to Alto Del Perdon.

Angel, Vern, and I at a Pilgrim sculpture on Alto Del Perdon.

A better view of the sculpture.

As we ascended down the mountain we had to be very careful. It seemed to be the same rock filled path for at least a mile.

Angel on the rock path.

A Pilgrim Memorial close to Utegra.

Angel pointing a boot in a garbage can.

I have seen boots made into flower planters. Boots that have been bronzed. Boots caught on fire in Fisterra. This is the first time I have seen a boot in a garbage can.

 

Santiago To Pamplona By Train

Day Eighteen. Travel by train.

Written on May 17, 2014.

Thanks Kathy for sharing a great three weeks with us. My belief is that the Camino is a microcosm of what we call life. What we tend to ignore or deny rises up. Sometimes it rises up loudly, sometimes in “deafening silence”. I am grateful to have shared this time with you, Kasie, Angel, and Vern. Kathy is starting her journey home to the U.S. Vern, Angel, and I are going to Pamplona today to meet our friend, Dieter from Belgium. Kasie flew out of Santiago on May 11th.

Kathy on the Camino.

Angel and Dieter in Pamplona.

Vern and I met Dieter on the Camino Frances in 2012. He was bicycling and we were walking. It is a miracle that we became friends due to the fact that bicyclists can travel many more miles. Thanks Dieter for taking the time and energy to visit us in Pamplona!

A typical street in Pamplona tonight!

 

Santiago To Pamplona By Train

Day Eighteen. Travel by train.

Written on May 17, 2014.

Thanks Kathy for sharing a great three weeks with us. My belief is that the Camino is a microcosm of what we call life. What we tend to ignore or deny rises up. Sometimes it rises up loudly, sometimes in “deafening silence”. I am grateful to have shared this time with you, Kasie, Angel, and Vern. Kathy is starting her journey home to the U.S. Vern, Angel, and I are going to Pamplona today to meet our friend, Dieter from Belgium. Kasie flew out of Santiago on May 11th.

Kathy on the Camino.

Angel and Dieter in Pamplona.

Vern and I met Dieter on the Camino Frances in 2012. He was bicycling and we were walking. It is a miracle that we became friends due to the fact that bicyclists can travel many more miles. Thanks Dieter for taking the time and energy to visit us in Pamplona!

A typical street in Pamplona tonight.

Check out video below:

http://youtu.be/rJuqKm47T6M

Fisterra To Santiago de Compostela

Day Seventeen. Bus to Santiago.

Written on May 16, 2014.

This is the day that we take the Pilgrim Bus to Santiago de Compostela. One of the buses today leaves at 8:20 a.m. We are up to get ready by 6:30 a.m. so we can have coffee and juice at a local cafe.

Sunrise view from our window.

It was a three hour bus ride along the coast….beautiful. The cost was 13 euros,10! What a bargain. It would cost more for a tour bus without the beautiful coast views.

We arrived in Santiago and walked to our room from the bus station.

Outdoor cafés near our room.

Our family is not able to visit Santiago without having a meal at the Negro Gato! The peppers, seafood, cheese, and bread are excellent!

Angel with Manolo of the Negro Gato, (Black Cat) Cafe.

One of several things that we wanted to accomplish today is: receive a very rare Compostela at the Covento San Francisco. We have been hearing about this Compostela from several Pilgrims. We are not sure of the complete details. It seems that it is only available for two months in 2014. It is not available after May 29, 2014. The next time it is available is 200 years from now. How accurate those few details are…I am not sure. We started out from our room to find the Convento San Francisco. We walked the entire perimeter of Santiago and began asking for help.

Vern, Kathy, Victor, Nancy, Angel, and Maribelle.

Victor and Maribelle are “Angels”! They observed us asking a woman who did not understand. They quickly let us know that they knew where the Convent was and that they would show us. Thank you Victor and Maribelle!!

Convento San Francisco.

My Compostela de Convento San Francisco.

 

Cee To Fisterra

Day Sixteen. 15.3 K., 9.5 Mi.

Written on May 15, 2014.

Cee is a beautiful town to be walking through in the early morning. There is a hill to climb while we were still waking up. It is warm and clear. Not well marked but Vern remembers the way to go from our 2012 walk.

Our shadows on the road.

Kathy, Angel, and Vern on the way to Fisterra.

It's great to see Fisterra!
Vern, Paul the Pilgrim Greeter, Angel, and Nancy.
Thanks to Paul, a Pilgrim volunteer from the U.K. who had information and a place to sit on the way into Fisterra.

Soon after we met Paul we were checking into our rooms. We had something to eat and took a nap. It is now time to walk the 3.5 K. to the lighthouse.

Vern, Nancy, Kathy, and Angel at the 0,00 marker.

A better look at the marker.

Kathy, Vern, and Angel at the “end of the world”.

As we walked down the hill from the lighthouse we met Erik from Belgium. Erik is knowledgeable about the area and the history.

Vern, Erik, Nancy, and Kathy.

We couldn't resist this photo for Angel's surfer brother!

My Fisterra Compostela.

 

Negreira To Olveiroa

Day Fourteen. 35.8 K., 22.2 Mi.

Written on May 13, 2014.

First thing this morning we walked up and up and up a mountain. I'm glad that I had my headlamp…it was still dark out at 6 a.m.

We arrived at the first bar after nine miles of walking. The bar was crowded. Everyone needed coffee, juice, or just a place to sit.

A statue of St. James on the way to Olveiroa.

A dog greeter on a country trail.

Today we walked a lot of miles. I have one focus: get to Olveiroa. There are few bars or places to stay on this stretch of the Camino. This would be a perfect place for a kool-aid stand.

Angel and Kathy walked ahead of us. Vern stayed with me. I was going slow up the mountains and after approximately 15 miles of walking I think I had broken my record for slow.

We finally arrived at Olveiroa after 12 hours of walking. Our beds are upstairs….just enough energy to get to bed.

 

Santiago de Compostela…Rest Day

Day Twelve.

Written on May 11, 2014

Today Kasie has begun her trip back to the U.S. She will have some time in Madrid.

We slept in and were grateful for the opportunity. We immediately looked for coffee. We found great coffee close by and went there twice today. Also the search for “cronuts” was on. In California a cronut is a cross between a croissant and a donut. In Spain they are called Glorias and are delicious. We found them! As we were walking around Santiago we saw a mannequin in a window.

Window art!

Angel, Kathy, and I went to the Pilgrim Mass.

A small view of a huge cathedral!

A mime outside the cathedral. Give her a coin, she gives a shiny rock.

At the same time that I saw the mime Angel and Kathy were visiting with Daniel and Arna. At that moment we decided to walk to the Gato Negro. The Gato Negro (pronounced nay-gro) is a great restaurant in town that the locals love! We saw Donal along the way. Vern joined us. I was so busy eating that I forgot to take photos. The Gato Negro is a must when in Santiago!

 

Padron To Santiago de Compostela

Day Eleven. 24.9 K., 15.5 Mi.

Written on May 10, 2014.

Before we left the Albergue I looked outside: this is a headlamp morning. It was 6:00 a.m. and dark. I feel good and pretty organized. My mantra as I'm packing my backpack is: light, heavy, light. Packing light on the bottom: sleeping bag, flip flops for shower, sleeping mask, headlamp, etc. next is water bladder with one liter of water, iPad, supplements, etc. toward the top of my bag is lightweight jacket, envelope of important papers, etc. my bag has two compartments that flip over the top. Those compartments have sunscreen, lip balm, buff for my neck/head, pen, etc.

We walked for about two hours. I saw that Vern, Angel, and Kasie had stopped. Angel was asking a cafe owner if the cafe was open. Next thing we knew he was opening the doors and turning on the lights! Yes, the first coffee of the day.

Vern, Eduardo, and Angel.

We saw Daniel walking up the road toward us. Soon Donal was with us…shortly after: Kirsten. Eduardo is a good business man. Soon after he opened the doors his son came downstairs looking very sleepy. They served cake that we did not order and turned on rock'n roll to listen to.

Kathy, Vern, Nancy, Donal, Daniel, Angel, Kasie, and Kirsten.

A few hours after the coffee stop we saw a sign that we didn't understand but followed a well worn path. Later some walkers told us we were going the wrong way.

I named this the b*** s*** sign.

Vern and I love the Dos Marias. The story that we heard is that they were two sisters who loved to walk in the Alameda area of Santiago sharing smiles and hugs with students.

Kasie, Nancy, Kathy, Vern, Angel, and Libor with statues of the Dos Marias.
The path in from Camino Portugues goes right by the Hostal Alameda where we are staying. We stopped to check in and then continue on to the Oficina de Peregrinos to receive our Compostela. I felt strange about going to the office without my backpack. I kept it with me just long enough to receive the Compostela.
My Compostela showing my Latin name.

In front of the Cathedral after receiving my Compostela.

 

Caldas De Reis To Padron

Day Ten. 18.1 K., 11.2 Mi.

Written on May 9, 2014

We stayed in the Posada Doña Urraca Albergue. Surprisingly I slept good! Many bunkbeds….no snoring. We woke up early and took off toward Padron. Angel made friends last night with several people. We saw them as we were walking.

Me and Libor from the Czech Republic.

One of the serene spots along the way.

Happy to get this photo of a beautiful lizard.

Kathy on her way to Padron.

A walk along the Rio Sar.

 

Pontevedra To Caldas De Reis

Day Nine. 23.1 K., 14.4 Mi.

Written on May 8, 2014.

There are very few places to stop for coffee or snacks. Yesterday we made sandwiches so that we would be prepared. We left Pontevedra at 6:15 a.m. It was good to do most of the walking in cooler conditions.

Angel and I stopped for a break. That's when we met Daniel from Australia as we were visiting with Donal from Australia.

Daniel writes songs as he walks.

Angel walking on a shady part of the trail.

A creative way to route a stream!