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Published: September 22nd 2009
I have been very lucky and had another superb day ... so much so that I really wanted to share it with you.
Last night I stayed at villafranca.. a lovely town with a beautiful park, the usual cathedral, large buildings and old castle. It is in the Valcarces Vally hwich means you have to walk up hill and down dale to get anywhere... not easy after a long walk! No matter.
This morning I did the usual, got up and left the albergue at about 7.00am I wasn´t in a hurry as I knew I had the whole day to do about 23kms. It was dark, yes even at 7.00am as the sun doesn´t get up unitl about 8.00a.m I left alone... really for the first time during this whole experience. I was following no-one so I had a few pangs of anxiety as I walked through the town looking for the inevitable yellow arrows or scallop signs. Then i came to the choice of raods... which route to take. One was marked clearly¨The Camino (in other words you hsuold go this way!) the other was dark, went uphill and was marked: very difficult. But this was the route I had planned to take. So take it I did!
The lesson for the day: Sometimes taking the hrad road means you get the best rewards! the more ffort you put in, the more you get out!
And so it was... I walked a very, very, very steep track up past homes, into the hills and finally with the sun coming up behind me I could look all over the valley. it was so superb! On was on top of the world! It was a wonderful experience, added to by the fact that there was not a pilgrim to be seen for miles.
I later learnt that many pilgrims walked that same track today, only much later. I was truly blessed or maybe just lucky that I had it all to myself. I must admit to sharing it with Bill... it was so great speaking with him!
Of course, whatever goes up must come down and so I had an incredibly steep and long descent. i took it slowly as going down the hills or rather these mountains can be even more damaging to your knees than going up.
Needless to say the two hours walking this morning will go down as one of my best experiences yet.
i finished walking at about 1.00pm today when I found this gorgeous albergue (privately owned) to stay at. AND I found i wasn´t alone. i spent lunch, eating my fresh fruit, wiht two lovely French people in the sun on a lovely patio watching all the peregrios going past. We were latre joined by 5 Canadian ladies so I have had a lovely day, all told.
Tonight we enjoy a pilgrim meal here at the albergue. Such experiences have always been great as you share a meal wiht lots of others from all around the world and the conversations... or at least the attempts to converse with others in a multitude of languages is so much fun, if not a little confusing.
Tomorrow I walk the stepest 8 kms of the whole camino... so everyone says. Today´s walk will be hard to beat for steepness. Wish me Buen Camino... I will need it!
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