Last night in Ambasmestas proved interesting as it's a very small village with not much happening and so I thought I would sit in the sun outside the hotel bar and read my book. After about an hour the other table of about 5 people asked me to join them. I tried to explain that I speak NO Spanish, but one of the ladies knew a little English and they didn't want me sitting alone. Turns out a few of the people at the table were part of a group of 15 walking the Camino and the owner of the hotel, Louis, who also has a few wineries. Louis wanted us to try his wines and had the waitresses bring out tapas throughout. As this went on, more of the group of 15 arrived until there was a huge crew sitting outside drinking Louis' wine and eating his food at no cost! One of the older gents in the group was rather cheeky and very funny and once asked if I'd be his second wife as I have "pretty eyes".....ummm no. A few more in the group spoke English, one lady who is going to Australia in August and was pleased
to have met someone to try out her English. I noticed 2 young, fit looking guys from the group sitting at a nearby table drinking water and constantly watching the group, turns out that the Mayor of Pamplona was part of the group and they were his body guards!!! So there you go, met the Mayor, had a few glasses of cracking wine and heaps of good tapas when I thought I would be dining alone with my book again. PS the CTR Ambasmestas Hotel is fantastic with big rooms, good shower and a balcony, who'd have thought in such a tiny village. I went to bed around 10pm in anticipation of a big day ahead, as the rest of the crowd went to dinner in the hotel. They wanted me to stay, but I have no idea how they could have eaten anymore food! Heard a few of them heading to their rooms around 1:30am and wondered if they made it to the Camino today.
Ok today, walked up the mountain to O'Cebreiro which was pretty tuff in parts and therefore I had quite a few stops. It's freezing in certain parts but warm and sunny coming through
unshaded areas. Lunched in O'Cebreiro which was pulpo a la galega (steamed octopus dusted with hot paprika) and a small beer to keep me going the next 8kms, or so they tell me that's how it works. Local beer is quite good too. Then headed down to Sabugos through Linares and Hospital de la Condesa. Staying at Casa Rodriguez which is a farm stay of sorts, about 2kms off the Camino. Lovely large house on a great big green farm with nice rooms, although shared bathroom and my room is rather cold, but there are lots of blankets on the bed. Only problem is no one speaks English so it's been interesting checking in and trying to find out what time they serve dinner and breakfast etc (apparently all made fresh by the owner of the house). From what I understand, they will drive me back up to the Camino in the morning on a tractor ha ha ha. I seem to be the only guest here and type this sitting on the lounge upstairs in the kitchen in the sun. Meant to be 5 degrees tonight in the valley, brrrrr!
Walked with a few people today for short
periods, one guy Thomas from Belgium who started the Camino in Belgium 71 days ago! That's commitment for you. So many routes to Santiago it seems.
Tomorrow will be a short day, about 16kms downhill to Triacastela (town of three castles, none of which survive). Hope to Skype the kids when I wake so they can show me my Mother's Day cards and send me lots of kisses.
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