Spain
Grandas de Salime

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    • Day 6

      6. Tag Berducedo nach Grandas de Salime

      June 28 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 15 °C

      0km und 0 Höhenmeter
      Da mein Zeh nicht gut aussieht und ich nicht in meinen Wanderschuhe laufen kann ohne es zu verschlimmern, habe ich die heutige Etappe ausgesetzt. Also bin ich mit dem Taxi zum nächsten Etappenziel und dort zum Arzt. Jetzt habe ich ein Antibiotikum und desinfizierenden Verband bekommen und halte heute die Füße still. Ich habe gestern Abend einen super lieben Mann getroffen, der Schulbusfahrer ist und mich netterweise für wenig Geld nach Grandas gefahren hat. Unterwegs hat er sogar für Fotos angehalten und ist mit mir auf eine Aussichtsplattform gegangen ☺️
      Hoffentlich sieht die Welt morgen schon anders aus und ich kann einen Versuch wagen weiter zu laufen. Ich brauche ganz viele gedrückte Daumen, dass ich den Weg hier fortsetzen kann. Aufgeben ist für mich eigentlich keine Option. Zum Glück, habe ich etwas Puffer eingebaut 🙏🏼
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    • Day 8

      Grandas de Salime > Fonsagrada

      April 26 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 6 °C

      Awoke to the glorious chorus of someone's accidental 4:30am alarm which proceeded to blare for 2 long mins before they evidently realised it was theirs. BUT an otherwise fun day reaching Galacia aka km marker province ! Yet to spend more than 10 mins with a layer other than my t-shirt (but progress was made taking my poncho OUT my bag)... beginning to think I have a cold resistent genetic mutation? Then had a surprise reunion with a certain someone for which the bananas, water gun and dropped hummus shenanigans is a big giveaway 🤪Read more

    • Day 27

      Grand Ass Salame 🤭

      June 18 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 57 °F

      I woke up a little bit unwell today. 🤒 I am actually quite surprised it took this long for the giant germ incubator that I am living in to get me sick. It’s only a sore throat and low energy, but I can feel the difference in my stamina.

      Today I was slow to get out of the hostel. A little bit because I am sick, but also the steady rain falling outside the albergue was not inviting, and a few of my donativo friends were relaxing on the communal couches. Spending time with them was inviting and it felt so serene in the albergue after everyone left. This was unlike the night before which was all hustle and bustle and 24 strangers from many different countries trying to cook, commune, and prepare for the next day. Last night was actually pretty fun. 🤩 It’s a wild experience seeing so many different types of people socializing and finding a way to live together in community. I played spades with a few people, and we had a wonderful time. ♠️ I realize I love card and table games so much while I am on this trip.

      The walk was a mellow descent to a small town, before a long steep descent down the side of a very, very, very foggy hill to a gorgeous reservoir. It was neat walking into the clouds, and then coming out above them. For awhile while I was walking with the funniest Englishman who was a former British Detective. He was a hoot, and told me all about his house cat named sunny Jim (SJ) who was the size of a small dog, and only sat in the “conservatory” looking at the pigeons and did not lift a paw to keep them from shitting on the house. 🤣🤣 He also told me that men think in boxes, and they can spend hours thinking about absolutely nothing. 🤔 He was a riot… a very slow moving riot, so I had to say goodbye and keep going.

      After the reservoir i began the gorgeous ascent to the town of Grandas de Salime. It was an evergreen forest heaven! Quite a welcome treat after a morning of slogging through the rain. The ascent ended with a really special section through a trail covered with ferns, and pines, and apsen-like trees.

      I am staying at another public Albergue. 🫤 I didn’t make a reservation for the better Albergue in town and had my first experience of the Albergue being all full! 😬 Lucky for me there were plenty of beds at the public one, but it made me start to think about getting reservations for the busier sections of the Camino Frances I’ll be walking next week. Only 8 days left!! 🫨

      Lunch/dinner today was really delicious! I was hungry because Berducedo didn’t really have anyplace for breakfast. I ate an apple and some walnuts before I left, and then a terrible, cold tortilla bocadillo 3 miles down the road. 😑 But the rest of the day there wasn’t much food to be found. But that’s okay because the restaurant here in Grandas de Salime fed me the most delicious thing called carrilleras de estofadas - which was basically stewed beef with French fries, and then arroz con leche. 😋

      More rain tomorrow and an even more km’s. Hopefully a good night rest can help me kick this bug.
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    • Day 25

      Grandas de Salime

      July 4 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

      Another day, another tiny town, but we arrived in this one early enough to get the Menu del Día at the one restaurant. I ate with Anthony from Singapore and German Annika. With a beer, this was 13 euros. The Spanish pilgrims at the next table treated us to a glass of some kind of home made spirit, and saying No wasn't an option....
      On the walk, we descended into the valley of the Grandas de Salime reservoir. 21km, 870m ascent, 1230m descent. As beautiful as yesterday and perfect weather again.
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    • Day 28

      La Mesa

      May 15 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 10 °C

      Day 28
      I actually overslept this morning, unbelievable, right, in a dorm, but felt so good when I woke up! The terrain was the hardest yet, with a huge ascent for the first half day, and a rain-wind storm at the top; tough going. But it was familiar mountainous walking, like the Alps perhaps, and I was alone ALL day ... apart from the moment I missed a turning, walked way down a forest path, and heard a voice shouting all sorts of things of which the only thing I understood was 'chica'! It was the forest ranger who had watched me wander off, came after me in his vehicle and gave me a lift back to the road. Rescued! Then I walked with an elderly Australian man for several miles until he stopped off at his accommodation; I sang my way downhill to my hostel. The cows are always intrigued when I sing.

      I was loving the patterns, tones and textures today. Fewer flowers but more lichen, moss and ferns. Loving the cloud, the sudden low visibility, the spit and blast of the changeable weather, the subdued light into the distant hills, the loneliness.

      Just before bed I experienced a hostel classic. Three friends at one end of the 24 bed dorm opened the window, creating a cold draught; the ladies next to me went to close it. Twice. Or was it three times. The 'Openers' objected, loudly, in bad English, the 'Closers' responded in similarly bad English, neither listening to the other of course, and no 'please can we... because..'. To and fro, voices raised, shouting, foreign incomprehensible aggression flying over my bed when each just wanted to express their anger; the Closers went to get the Host who marched in and clapped it shut, muttering and tutting; the Germans worked out that if they lowered the shutters the draught would be less, so planned to open up again later... Which they did, I'm glad to say. Hostel muff is awful.

      It was a cartoon, would have been funny if it were not a really uncomfortable caricature of people's inability to treat each other as humans sharing the planet. Isn't it just like life? Sigh...
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    • Day 6

      Day 22 Pola to Grandes de Salime 445km

      October 14, 2023 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

      So i had to wait until the bar opened at 7 so I could have breakfast. Said goodbye to Avril who was going by bus to Santiago and then fly to Southern Spain for some sun.

      The forecast is for rain the next week or so.
      Anyway, I headed out in the dark and rain.....
      I noticed 2 torchlights behind me. It was a couple the woman was from Hungary and the guy from Wales.

      I ended up walking with them the whole way up the mountain and down to the end.

      The fellow was like a mountaingoat. He said he goes on hikes at least once per week.

      So very steady climb....up and up and up. Honestly it was like hiking at the Roger's Pass except no coniferous trees.

      There were beautiful wild Heather and other flowers. Unfortunately you could not see very far because of the low clouds but it was beautiful.

      Apparently, this section is the most difficult on the whole Primitivo.😱

      All of my pictures are on my other phone that refuses to charge🙄 I am not happy about that at all !!!!😞

      I am hoping that it is just due to moisture because of all the rain but I did have it in a plastic bag so I don't know.....
      It was a spectacular mountain hiking day through beautiful forests.....
      And..... I didn't fall !!! ( which was a miracle)

      I will upload the pics if and when I can🤞☘️
      Very happy with my training zones. My pace reflects the difficulty.

      Good news here are the pics😍🥰👍
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    • Day 5

      Day 5 - Berducedo to Grandas de Salime

      June 19 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 55 °F

      After a great night's sleep Bonnie and I were ready to take on another day on the Primitivo. The place we stayed provided breakfast and we were thankful for the coffee, toast and orange juice to start the day. We agreed, we've never had better OJ than what they make here in Spain a cup at a time. We've also decided we have more energy for the walk when we eat breakfast first.

      We were surprised when we went outside this morning to find sunshine. The night before the forecast had been for rain all day. We had the gift of the first half of today without any precipitation.

      The views were spectacular both being above the clouds and then in them. We walked a while with Benjamina and Alba (a couple from Sweden and Spain, respectively) and I commented that it was nice to see our shadow again this morning as yesterday we didn't see much of it all. Alba responded that she and Benjamin could barely see each other yesterday, and we all laughed.

      It is interesting to interact with people from other countries about the politics in ours. Europeans seem to be very aware of what is going on in the American government. Sometimes we are asked questions. Sometimes pilgrims want to know who we will be voting for in the upcoming election. There is a lot of concern regarding the direction that American politics has swung and how it affects the rest of the world.

      We met a sweet girl from the Ukraine today. She talked a bit about the war in her country. Yesterday she was confronted with two Russian pilgrims and she didn't feel safe. She was walking longer today to try and get ahead of them and in a smaller albergue. She also told us that in discussing the war in Ukraine many people will try to dismiss the conflict to economics. In her view it is easier for people to stomach the war with that reasoning. It is also her view that the war exists because some people are simply evil.

      The realities of our world don't disappear on the Camino. Even when you'd like to you don't necessarily get a break from them.

      The walk today went up, and then as our Greek fried Agapeosa would say, "Down, down, downstairs." We had been told how unrelenting the decline would be that would lead us down to the reservoir, only only to then have to ascend back up to the town where we would be staying. We found the decline manageable, especially with the nice weather.

      We stopped at a restaurant just above the dam for lunch for our first actual break of the day. I took a photo of the dam, looking back in the direction we had come, from the back patio as we were getting ready to leave. By the time we exited the front entrance it had begun to rain. It was astonishing how fast the weather came over the mountain. Bonnie and I walked the remaining kilometers in pouring rain. It was such a difference from the first part of the day. We have no photos from the last third of the walk.
      Rain is also forecast for tomorrow. We are attempting to dry out our shoes for that longer walk. After that we are supposed to see sunshine again.

      It is our last night in Asturias as tomorrow we will cross over into the region of Galicia. We are going to eat more of the local delicacies tonight as tomorrow they will be different. This is such a marvelous adventure!

      Ultreia et Suseia!
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    • Day 29

      Grandas de Salime

      May 16 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

      Day 29
      Started in grey and wet bluster with lots of complaints from the walkers but none of them from my mouth! I love weather. I love the changeability of temperature, atmosphere ... of the feel, the challenge of it all. And it really really helps that I have great kit ... I even sang a little song to my super storm umbrella.

      Stumbled across a friendly Italian gent, Eduardo, while he was sheltering from the rain under the decrepit roof of the porch of a tiny chapel, and we walked most of the way together. He's carrying his tent and everything, impressively for a 73 year old, and - can you imagine - even including 'Prince of Wales' tea, which he then provided for me in his billy can at a little lunch stop we made. And he generously granted me a sliver of his precious parmigiano reggiano, brought with him from Italy and obviously the biggest treat of his hike! All I could offer him was black chocolate.
      Yes, he's smelling the moss (see pic). I like weird.

      A short day, 17km, essentially one huge up and one long down, followed by a little up-down. Now you know. All remote. The reservoir is (or was) the biggest in Europe, Eduardo told me, built in 1948, and villages up and down the valley had to be lost to the water. Isn't it a remarkable decision to do this? A bit like the HS2 project, at least for those who lose their homes, but there's something that feels really ancient and archetypal about it, intriguing, haunting, romantic even.

      Joy (China/ London) shared a room with me at the monastery on Day 12; she just turned up at this hostel. Surprise!
      Everyone else seems to be new. I find that also surprising, almost more so: I might meet no-one all day, or, as today, leapfrog many others (Danish, today, for the first time, and Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Romanian, don't know what else), but there must be a finite number of people out there!
      There's just one week left of the usual 'stages', the last 160km or so before Santiago, and I've been planning accommodation a bit more in advance than up till now. We will join the French Camino for two or three days at the end, which will be very interesting and, according to the talk on the ground, possibly awful. There could be several hundred or more pilgrims in any one town, some of whom will have walked a similar distance to me, from St Pied de Port in the French Pyrenees, but others only the last 100km, which is the distance that justifies receiving the Compostela certificate from the Cathedral. We will all be wanting a bed, and food, at the same time!

      My application for Italian citizenship has at last at last at laaaaaaaaast been accepted, after months of hassle and anxiety about all the hoops to be jumped through, and the documentation required. I've had to deal with additional elements of it several times in the last month, for hours in fact, on the road, when I was wishing I could be paying attention to nature and beauty and la-la-la ... as you do, on the Camino. (Thank you Luca for all your patient help). One of these days I shall be accepted as an Italian/and therefore also as a European. That day there will be beers all round, whoever I'm with!
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    • Day 5

      Day 5

      June 27 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      It's great to have a short hike, at the albergue by 2:30. I'm still high in the mountains, spent much of the morning walking through cloud, couldn't see more than 30 yards for the first couple of hrs. But once I got through the clouds it was class. The albergue is so cool, it's the old brick building, maybe the last photo.Read more

    • Day 7

      La Mesa > Grandas de Salime

      April 25 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 7 °C

      A chill shorter day winding around the dam! Damp but refreshing and had a lovely afternoon to vegetate and crochet and sneak a choc out the sweet bowl on the reception desk every time I passed. Next to no aches or pains so far amazingly (touch 🪵) so the camino 1 hiker muscles must still be in there somewhere. Had a delish burger in the eve despite dropping half on the floorRead more

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