Well, for starters…I’m very tired but had a lovely day…agaaaain : )
I dragged myself out of bed this morning and was on the road by 7.40am. The morning again was VERY fresh! This time I was prepared with layers AND gloves! There has been a notable drop in temperature over the last few days, the mornings, in particular. I guess we all need to remember that this walk was started, for a lot of us, at the change of seasons…. and now we are almost finished with the first month of Spain’s Autumn. The days are becoming a little cooler ( except for yesterday..which was A LOT cooler) but the mornings before the sun rises are definitely COLD! Today, my hands..even though I wore gloves….and my poor legs, ( which will have to endure the freshness until I reach Santiago in 7 days time, as I have no long pants with me) were FREEZING!
However, it wasn’t long before the sun was happily smiling down on us and the day ended up being totally beautiful….not sure of the temperature but very warm….
I arrived in Pontferrada, a sprawling town about 6 kms out of Molinaseca and had breakfast. The old part of this town was interesting..with a castle on the Caminos doorstep…but sadly it was closed.
The walk out of Pontferrada, would have been short and sweet..followed by a lovely walk through farmlands and vineyards…so they tell me… but I got lost!!! : (
I was fairly sure that I would end up back on the Camino..as I stopped regularly to ask the locals if I was heading in the right direction. The response always, was a dramatic sweep of the hand and a loud “Todo directo!” …straight ahead : )
Not quite sure how I did it, as it’s virtually impossible to lose sight of those yellow arrows..but I did.
I must admit, although I knew I would end up rejoining the Camino…as the locals were all positive I would : ) it was slightly unnerving to be separated from my fellow peregrinos and also not to have the constancy of the signage along the way. I walked another 8 kms along a busy suburban road, before reconnecting in a village with the Camino path and again happily walking with my well worn companions: )
The afternoons walk was very pleasant. We walked through many vineyards, with lovely rolling hills and valley views. One of the pleasing things I noticed was how the people here, especially on the poorer looking vineyards… often manage to pop in a vegetable garden or fruit trees..dispersed among the vines.
I did notice, however, a little further down the track ….the farms became a lot more industrialised and there seemed to be more structure to their management.
I arrived in Villa Franca, another very gorgeous pueblo….had a lovely shower and literally felt very tired but very happy.
Late this afternoon..and tonight.. was spent wandering around the village and taking in the sights… chatting to fellow peregrinos and eventually having dinner with two women…one from Finland and the other from Germany. They both had very good English..so the conversation was good : )
Im off to bed now…short blog tonight but big day tomorrow…apparently the second hardest day on entire Camino, the first, being the day from St Jean to Roncesvalles : )
Happy and tired..but looking forward to tomorrow! We are about to enter beautiful Galicia : )
Love and big hugs,