16 June La Virgen del Camino to Hospital de Orbigo

Slept well last night. Ear plugs have become my favourite Camino equipment. At 6:15 I stepped out of the Albergue into a chilly, blue-skied morning with moon still high and the sun preparing to break the horizon behind me.

I had only been walking for about an hour when the thoughts for the day were set in motion by this piece of graffiti, “Are you free? Or do you hide from reality?”

At about the same time as reading the graffiti I needed to make a decision. Was I to follow a route which basically followed a major roadway or, take a more original route which I am warned can prove to be a problem for the unwary and unprepared.

I hope I am prepared enough and follow the second choice. It isn’t too long before I am rewarded for my choice.

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The countryside is starting to change now from the long, wide views offered by the Meseta over the last four days or so. It would take an awful lot of words to describe the difference between now and previous posts. So, courtesy of my laziness here is version of a Google Street View, live just for you from the Camino Frances. These next photos are a 360 degree view of the countryside around me at about 8:30 this morning.

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Just before nine o’clock the sun finally chases away the morning chill and it is time for today’s first toe wiggle.

The wild flowers are much fewer and farther in between now but still in enough numbers to make me slow down to admire them and soothe the savage beast within me that wants me to walk faster and further than before.

The warnings about being prepared for this stretch of openness were well stated. Nothing in the form of shops has been available and I have been walking for 3 hours now. When I reach here………

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……….I stop for my breakfast and dine like a beggar king.

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I check my route and find that even though it is not yet 10 in the morning I have already walked about 15 kilometres. The walking has been relaxing, fairly easy, quite pretty and with plenty of time to think. I have seen only 5 people in the last 4 hours or so.

At 12 o’clock I find myself sitting in the shade of the bell tower of the church in Villavante as I lunch on bread, a banana and an isotonic drink. As soon as I take my socks of the bells strike a melody for 12 o’clock and I nearly jump out of my skin.

Just about 7 hours after I started walking this morning I cross this roman bridge……

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…….. Where I envy this guy waist deep in cool water…..

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…… Walk through some streets……..

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………. Find this place…….

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……. Where I register at the same time as a hymn singing Italian…….

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…… And get this bed…….

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…… And these showers……..

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……..and these butterflies………

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……. And a wall to read………

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Now, I am hungry. I am tired. I am looking forward to tomorrow’s walking. I think I shall first satisfy my hunger, then do something about my tiredness and prepare for tomorrow.

Steps today 41265

Bye for now folks

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