Distance: 17.6km, Steps: 24,405, Time total: 5hrs.
I had a better nights sleep which was great. As I crawled into bed at a late 10pm time last night, the church bells in the seemingly next room went off, BONGGGG! It was time for sleep! Mr D said the German man snored at one stage but I slept through it. The beds weren’t very comfortable. I got Mr D’s bed – it sloped down one side & I kept thinking I would roll right out of bed & wake up on the floor! The bed length seemed too short as well as my feet dangled over the end of the bed. As I mentioned before; not a good place for very tall people! But I do enjoy experiencing the Albergues, each one is a different experience with good & not good qualities. The shower was excellent but there is only 3 shower combined toilets & all were full this morning when Mr D needed to go to the toilet. He had to jiggle about in the hallway waiting for it seemed 5 minutes before one was free.
We were up early, packed up & heading out the door by 7am as the funny man that runs the place was already going around cleaning the rooms as people were leaving them. We hit the local cafe for breakfast crossiants & hot drink. Mr D complained about eating plain crossiants all the time. It was either a plain or chocolate one & he didn’t like the latter. So he had to force his crossiant down. No heated up crossiant with butter & jam here! The Pilgrims rush hour hit as people queued up for breakfast & it became loud & busy. Was time to hit the road!
As we left town, it started drizzling a little. Our Brollies came in handy for this. The walk was a standard Meseta run through long straight roads onto long straight dirt roads with not much to look at. And it’s a long 17.3kms before you reach the first town. Like yesterday, we walked closely together. Mr D was still fighting his cold & wasn’t having much of a day today.
Mr D was bored. Bored with the roads. Bored with the flat views. Bored with the sign that read ‘truck food stop 5kms’. Mr D was bored. And he goes “Bloody Pilgrims! I look ahead & see a line of Pilgrims. I look behind & see a line of Pilgrims! How can this be a Pilgrimage with all these Pilgrims!” “The views are so boring I can’t stand it! Perth looks better than this!” “What is the point of walking the Camino if you got earphones on listening to music!” Grumble grumble…. Poor Mr D was not in the right state of mind. He had used all his energy yesterday & was spent today. Plus he was losing his voice.
We arrived at the truck food stop. Not very interesting. Hot drinks served in plastic little cups. Some plastic tables & chairs to sit at. Posters displaying of no public urinatating on EVERY tree. I think they got the point across! There was a man & woman running it & the man had a terrible attitude. I asked for Cafe Solo, he goes “What!?! American?!” Mr D was annoyed by the mans rudeness. He said after that the man was trying to confuse me & should of said ‘Americano’ meaning black coffee instead of being a smart ass. Then two young Asian women went up to him & asked if there was a public toilet around quietly. They got a loud “What?!? Toilets?! No toilets here!!” reply as he practically laughed in their faces. I’ll leave this experience as the lest memorable one of rest stops.
On we plodded, Mr D putting in a good effort through he had no strength for walking. The weather changed as the wind picked up & the temperature dropped. We decided to stop somewhere & eat our sandwiches we made this morning. I spotted a small simple shelter enough to be out of the wind. We enjoyed our sandwiches watching the Pilgrim parade go pass, everyone walking heads bent forward into the wind gusts. Huge ponchos that cover the person & the backpack flapping about. They look like the Hunchback of Notre Dame in their ponchos. You didn’t want to go around the back of the shelter – it gets used as a public toilet & absolutely STINKS! There’s toilet paper & rubbish everywhere even through there is two big bins close by. It’s disgraceful! But I notice a lot of discarded rubbish & toilet paper on the side of the Camino track even by the busy roads. It’s such a shame that people don’t do the right thing with their rubbish. In the far distance I noticed a Shepherd with his flock of sheep.
After our break we only had another hour of walking to reach the small Pilgrim village of Calzadilla de la Cueza. The first town I’ve seen with no Church! Mr D thought about going further but decided he best stop early, rest & recharge. I could see he struggled quite a bit & with the wind so strong, makes harder work. We were lucky not to have the sky open up & drench us in rain.
We have a nice Albergue too. It’s a big bunk room but we picked our beds furthest from the bathroom & people traffic. Unbelievable they have a beautiful inviting pool which is blue & clean. Shame it wasn’t another hot day – a swim would of been refreshing. Too cold today for that. We watched the people we have met stop for lunch & move on; Timo, Marisa, the Frenchmen, Kevin….. We ended up downstairs for beer & some chicken wings before Mr D retired to his bed for an afternoon siesta. I had a wander around & went to pat a happy little black fluffy dog that is a playful nipper & put a hole in my long pants! When I returned, Mr D was fast asleep snoring.
The Albergue was filling up surprisingly. The American & Englishman that sat with us in Hornillos were also staying in the same room as us. Mr D & I went down to the cafe bar & shared a bottle of red wine. One of the workers there was a very happy man. He cranked up some nice Samba music & was singing & grooving along.
Dinner was just down the road at the hostal restaurant. That was where Jo & Sigrid were staying as we met Jo downstairs & went to dinner. Sigrid came down & joined us. There were more good laughs & stories around the table, it was a lovely evening. They are taking a rest day here tomorrow as Sigrid was having pains in her hips. We all sadly said goodbye as who knows if we will meet again. However, The Camino does work in mysterious ways…..
About the author AmblingRose
We are keen hikers based in Perth, Western Australia. We have hiked 7 New Zealand multi-day walk trails, the 800km Camino Frances in Spain, the Cape to Cape in WA, Mount Kinabalu in Borneo, Malaysia. We have hiked sections of the 1003 km Bibbulmun Track in WA with plans to complete an end to end this year in Spring, 2019.
Honeymoon Pool to Balingup
Chichester Range Camel Trail