Friday, August 22, 2014

A Correction, and moving along

Hello, everyone.

I noticed while looking at yesterday's post (after hitting the "post" button!) that I had somehow transmuted the name of Valdeiglesias, the village where we stayed, into Santeiglesias, which as far as I know is a nonexistent village. Sorry.

Valdeiglesias, besides having a church with a noted statue of a saint, and a wonderful albergue, had lovely rose gardens. Well, a lot of the villages in northern Spain had beautiful rose gardens, as well as the wilder trail sections descending from the Pyrennees having God's rose bowers to walk through, but my sweetie was inspired to photograph flowers in gardens from time to time, and he did so in Valdeiglesias.

I admired the roses so much in the Spanish gardens! I think they're so pretty because the nights are cool--not that I know. But my roses aren't as bodaciously lush at all, and our nights in the summer are about 79 to 81 degrees F. The days are about 20 degrees F hotter, of course. But I think it's the nights that matter.

The next morning, we got to Rabanal about 9 and ate Tuna and Tomato Bocadillo for breakfast. YUM. And a nice break from the unending round of ham-and-cheese we had been on. Or course we also had Cafe Leche to go with it. And the Bar owner is a Johnny Cash fan, so as we walked in we heard "The Streets of Laredo" on the music system.

About 11 we got to Foncebadon and had a bottle of cold water and contemplated a village that had, prior to the revival of the pilgrimage in the late 20th century, been basically a ghost town. Now it has some albergues and a bar. We kept on going, climbing rocky goat tracks to the Cruz de Ferro and discovering that some Aggies had left a 12th Man towel on the huge cairn of rocks at the base of the cross. As you can see, lots of other folks have left little tokens, too. Be very careful when descending the pile of rocks, they shift.

We carried on to Acebo for a 28 kilometer day. The last 10 or so was downhill on loose, slippy shale. I hated it. But when you're halfway down you can't very well wiggle your nose like Elizabeth Montgomery's TV character and fly to better footing--you just have to grit your teeth and step carefully. I didn't use the poles, because I had noticed that using poles on this kind of trail only meant that I had three things (at least) that had to be on secure footing instead of only two. We stayed at the Meson albergue in Acebo, grateful that we'd gotten down the mountain with no sprained ankles and looking forward to reaching Ponferrada the next day.
The smooth stuff on the edges is not flat. But taking a photo gives a pause to recover nerve before continuing!