Thursday, September 3, 2015

After Rabacal, a sometimes-rainy walk

Hello, everyone.

We left Rabacal early, as usual. The day promised pleasant walking weather, but delivered a mix of that and rain. In consequence of the off-and-on rain, I lost my stuff sack for the rain poncho. User tip: don't just shove the stuff sack into your pocket. It will fall out! And you won't even know it until you try to put the poncho away. (Y'all may remember that after we returned to Texas, I made a new stuff sack for the poncho. They have to be contained somehow!)

A lovely trail side tile sign

We walk in: "Where are we?" The lady at the bar smiles and says "You are here!"
This was after some very scary road walking on the major highway. Which had no shoulder, no 2 foot wide trail in the dirt alongside, no sidewalk--and lots of trucks. It was nerve wracking. And somewhere in the mix of trucks and cars and blind curves, we missed the trail turnoff that would have led us to a path away from the traffic. As it turned out, the houses behind this little place had a connection to the Camino walking trail and we got back onto a quieter trail. (Almost twice as far, probably, but quieter.)

A small shrine in the middle of a parking lot by the road

We always talk about walking on goat tracks. Sometimes it really IS a goat track!

Coimbra is a major city, with a big highway. Fortunately there is an overpass.

I think this was the church dedicated to Santiago (Sao Tiago) in Coimbra. They had adoration going on in there...but we couldn't see any info on where/when Sunday Mass would be.

These were billed as "typical" Portuguese desserts. The one in front is a kind of stacked cookie torte. The one in back is mango custard. Note that the weather was cool enough for me to wear the fleece sweater we got in Pamplona last year!
We ate in a two-story restaurant in the old part of Coimbra, where we chatted with some airline folks that were also eating there. Nice young people, and it turned out that the lady had a relative who had done the pilgrimage years ago.

The next morning, we got lost trying to leave the city. After asking a man who was working for the buses (or maybe trains) we got aimed in the right direction and headed out across small asphalt roads and eventually across a muddy field. (The track had looked drier than it was.)