Spain
O Milladoiro

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    • Day 14

      Nearly there

      July 17, 2023 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

      Started the day early thanks to Mr Snoreandwhistle and Mrs Flashlight; I have had better nights' sleep. Anyway, it gave me a good, if a little chilly start. First half of the 15km walk definitely more up than down.
      Some lovely small villages with narrow cobbled streets, wooded lanes and then the approach to the city. The walk through the suburbs is quite long, but into the old part and it's much more interesting. Many narrow streets dwarfed by the grand architecture of the cathedral and it's surrounds.
      Arrived in time for the Pilgrim Mass, so went out of curiosity, having had to make a mad dash to the left luggage office as backpacks weren't allowed in. Knee giving me gip so eventually found a seat at the back. Such a ornate cathedral and huge. The service concluded with the swinging of the botafumeiro, which was quite impressive.
      Next a visit to the Pilgrim Office to collect the compostela and then a light lunch.
      Somehow added another 7km finding accommodation; I'm staying in the Monastery overlooking much of the town and can just see the spires of the cathedral.
      Tomorrow should be a rest day. Finistère will have to wait for another camino.
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    • Day 19

      O Milladoiro!

      July 7, 2023 in Spain ⋅ 🌬 70 °F

      We have arrived at the Albergue Milladoiro, which is SO much better than last nights stay and only 6 euros more! We have decided to stop just short of Santiago De Compostela today. We are less than 3 miles away, which will be an easy walk tomorrow morning and we can beat the lines and crowds of pilgrims that arrive a bit later! As you can see the sun has come out once again! It’s supposed to rain tonight, but no need for ponchos, yet!Read more

    • Day 10

      Day 10 - Iria Flavia to O Milladorio

      July 6, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 68 °F

      Big to do tomorrow!

      The anticipation is killing me.

      Today was a good walk to essentially the door step of Santiago de Compostela. We had a great night sleep mainly because the hostelier returned to check on the Pilgrims and turned the AC on. He noticed I had opened all the doors and windows to get some air and had mercy on us. We got up at 5am to leave at 6am. We packed our backpacks and had a cafe con leche at the albergue. We bandaged our toes and feet and started walking to O Milladorio.

      We decided to not go all the way because we would not have arrived at Santiago until possibly late in the afternoon, tired and hungry. That’s not how we want to arrive. So, we stopped here only a short 7-8 km tomorrow morning in order to arrive between 8 and 9 am. That’s before most Pilgrims. We easily saw 100 or more pilgrims on the Camino, the vast majority of who were going all the way today. Mostly from Padron. It took every ounce of patience I have to not join them.

      Overall, it was a pleasant walk. The last part was pretty much uphill all the way. We got a few pics, but mostly talked about tomorrow and what we would do and see, what Pilgrim friends we would run into etc., etc. The excitement kept us going in spite of the hills trying to drain our energy.

      So, we are here now in O Milladorio. We are staying in another very nice albergue. Less than $20. We had some beers and good food (pizza!) and great conversation.

      I even had the opportunity to sign in on zoom for my Wednesday morning Bible study. I received some final prayers before my afternoon nap.

      Tomorrow will we arrive in Santiago. In my mind the trumpets will be blaring and there will be great rejoicing by all the people. Since Jesus arrived on a donkey, I think that’s a little too much to ask. But the joy will know no bounds.

      For now good night and God Bless!

      BUEN CAMINO!!

      10.4 miles/ 32,000 steps
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    • Day 12

      O Milladorio to Santiago de Compestela

      June 11 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 12 °C

      We started early and arrived in Santiago de Compestela just after 8:00am. It was a very short 5 mile walk. It was probably the coldest day we had. It was all very emotional as I honestly did not think I could complete this 1) without using extra transportation 2) no rest days 3) arriving earlier than expected 4) all while building so many special friendships in such a short period of time. The memories we have created will never fade. I am confident that I could turn around and make it back to the beginning on my own willpower (and Darin of course carrying some of my packed items!) Our friends are continuing on and we have no desire to quit, but may we take back all the lessons the Camino has to offer. Mostly, you can be delightfully happy with a good pair of shoes, a piece of bread, some fruit, a trail, and some sunshine. Everything else is extra. Maybe extra good, maybe extra bad. Have a blessed day, and see you soon.Read more

    • Day 20

      Back to our albergue!

      July 8, 2023 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 70 °F

      We wandered the streets for a bit around the cathedral, but we are SO tired! After around 225 miles of walking and often uphill…the legs and feet complain constantly! 🤣 We attended mass at the cathedral, thinking we would sit, but they kept having us stand for long portions! Our Irish friend, McDarra, finished his Camino just about 5 hours after us, so we met up for lunch… and more sitting and watching the many pilgrims arriving! Not long after that we agreed we are lacking energy for sightseeing, so we took a taxi back to our albergue in Milladoiro for a nice evening of R&R.Read more

    • Day 11

      Padrón - O Milladoiro

      September 23, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 22 °C

      Ich habe heute ganz vorbildlich bis 8 Uhr geschlafen. Aufgrund der immens hohen Preise entschied ich mich nochmal eine Nacht außerhalb von Santiago zu übernachten und morgen früh die letzten 7 km zu laufen. Das hat den Vorteil, dass ich dann früh in Santiago bin und so hoffentlich den Massen ein wenig entkommen kann. So die Theorie. Auf jeden Fall bedeutete dies, dass ich heute nur eine kurze Etappe von 16 km vor mir hatte, daher konnte ich es mir erlauben, später aufzustehen. Ich frühstückte noch in einem kleinen Café und machte mich dann auf. Es ging durch viele kleine Ortschaften und eine davon war ein Katzenparadies. Noch nie habe ich so viele gutgenährte Katzen in einem Ort gesehen. Das lag wahrscheinlich daran, dass sie in einem Unterschlupf immer entsprechend Essen vorgesetzt bekamen - Katze müsste man sein.
      Und dann sah ich sie: Menschenmassen. Beim Annähern erkannte ich, dass es Jugendliche waren, bestimmt 100 oder mehr, die wohl einen Ausflug von Padrón nach Santiago unternahmen. Schöne Idee! Das Überholen gestaltete sich allerdings schwierig auf den schmalen Straßen und beim Vorbeilaufen fühlte ich mich dann wie in Peking, als Attraktion der Kiddies. ‚Hello‘, ‚Hello‘, ,Hello‘ von allen Seiten. Geschafft! Puh! Heute ging es wieder viel bergauf und bergab, letzteres mögen meine Knie nicht mehr so. Der Duft des Weges war eine Mischung aus Kohl und Zimt, ich glaube das sind die Feigen, die so süßlich riechen. Hier gefällt mir letzteres definitiv besser, nichtsdestotrotz macht der Kohlduft wieder Lust auf einen leckeren Eintopf. Als ich in O Milladoiro ankam aß ich erstmal was und brauchte eine Siesta, weil ich so unfassbar müde war. Was man Körper braucht, soll er auch bekommen - schließlich hat er mich in den letzten 10 Tagen über 250km weit getragen, einfach unfassbar!
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    • Day 18

      Our penultimate day on Camino

      September 30, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 64 °F

      Yesterday’s clouds turned into thick fog this morning. We ate breakfast at our guesthouse and chatted with Diane from San Francisco (the one in California). She is walking solo but used a tour company to book her accommodation and luggage transfer. She was underwhelmed by a few of the places she has stayed and was not looking forward to her characterless hotel in Santiago. I hope she will be pleasantly surprised.

      Since last night’s hotel was a few kilometers off the Camino, just outside A Escravitude, near Padrón, we took a taxi back to the church where we’d stopped walking yesterday. While we waited for the cab to arrive we got to know our hospitaliera, Macarena. Yup. That’s her name. She is from Venezuela and came to Spain to study for her master’s degree in hospitality. Then the pandemic hit. Overnight, the tourism industry shut down. She found work in a grocery store to pay the bills until about a month ago when she started managing Casa da Meixida. She hates it. The owner owns several other properties and is apparently very dismissive of her skills and previous job experience. In short, she’s overqualified and her boss is a jerk. Very relatable. Still, she was very welcoming and professional and I hope she finds a better situation soon.

      As we were riding in the taxi back to our starting point we passed hordes of pilgrims hustling to Santiago, just over 25k away. We are taking two days to cover that distance so we weren’t in a big rush. By the time we started walking, only the stragglers were left. By mid-afternoon we were virtually alone on the trail.

      Walking through the foggy valley was chilly this morning, Fall is definitely in the air. The change in the weather from last week to today makes it feel like we’ve been walking longer than twelve days. We started walking in summer and now it’s autumn.

      We stopped at a cafe for a bathroom break and while waiting in the inevitable queue we were entertained by a group of singing Portuguese pilgrims. Everyone in the cafe joined in, including the owner and his wife who came out of the kitchen for the chorus. After we left the cafe we kept running into them, singing a hymn in the church up the road, singing and dancing a flamenco for a man and his dog further on. They were a hoot!

      On our way we met up again with two young Portuguese women we had met a few days ago, Inês and Katherine. The first time we met them they had just started their Camino and were exhausted and struggling to keep going. We’d been wondering whether they were still walking so it was really good to see them again, looking more cheerful this time. We were busy taking goat pictures so we exchanged a brief greeting and they walked on.

      Later we saw them at a cafe where we stopped for lunch and they invited us to sit with them. They were full of funny stories about snoring pilgrims in the albuergues and generally seem to have embraced their Camino experience for what it is.

      While we were eating our lunch in the shade we were attacked by the biggest bees? hornets? wasps? I have ever seen. Aggressive buggers. Ellen was their particular favorite and she ended up abandoning her lunch and fleeing back inside. Our lunch cut short, we took a quick photo with Inês and Katherine and headed off.

      Tonight we’re staying at Casa As Bentinas in O Milladoiro, pretty much a suburb of Santiago. Tomorrow we’ll only walk 6-7k though I hear it’s mostly uphill. We were pretty beat when we got here shortly after 3:00 so it was a good decision for us not to push for Santiago as so many others did. Walking 25+k with a long climb at the end would be unpleasant.

      Since Casa as Bentinas is another « casa rurale» (owned, as it happens , by the same guy as last night’s Casa Meixida 🫤) we’re a bit off the Camino and there’s not much nearby. I had just enough energy left to walk 15 minutes to a grocery store in town to grab the usual ingredients for a picnic dinner.

      I’ve had a nice hot shower and picked out my outfit for tomorrow, basically whatever I didn’t wear today. Such a simple existence. We get to sleep in a bit tomorrow but hope to be in Santiago in time for the noon pilgrim mass.

      Or perhaps I’ll hit the snooze button one more time.
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    • Day 12

      Letzter Stopp vor Santiago

      March 29, 2023 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 14 °C

      Gott sei dank- habe ich dieses mal auf meinen Körper gehört... seit den gestrigen 35 km wurde heute jeder Schritt schleppend und müde genommen... auch die Ferse hinten tat weh.. lies da Achilles grüßen? Ich hoffe nicht!!!

      Egal, heute bin ich in einem mega Hostel und freue mich auf sie ersten, letzten Kilometer
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    • Day 21

      Tag 21

      April 21, 2021 in Spain ⋅ 🌧 11 °C

      Im strömenden Regen haben wir heute Santiago de Compostela besichtigt. Sicher wurde die Altstadt vor Corona öfters besucht als Heute, waren wir doch fast die einzigen.
      Im Anschluss wollte ich mein erstes Brot im Omnia Ofen backen. Nachdem ich mein Schweizer Urdinkelmehl geduldig eine Nacht quellen lies und anschliessend dem fertigen Teig genug Zeit gab um sich zu entwickeln, wollte ich Resultate sehen. Das Brot an sich wäre Top, nur leider bringe ich es nicht aus der verdammten (so artikuliert man sich an einem Pilgerort eigentlich nicht) Form... Hätte ich mir doch noch die dazu passende Silikoneinlage gegönnt😩Read more

    • Day 23

      Walk to Milladoiro

      October 3, 2023 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 22 °C

      Well not long to go now. Only a 7km walk in the morning to Santiago de Compostela, so should get there fairly early then try and get to the noon Pilgrims' Mass.
      A very nice night in the Monastery albergue last night, and met some nice people at the communal dinner, including German sisters, a Turkish/American woman, a Kiwi teacher and two of three Swedish twin brothers. Dinner was very nice, just salad and soup, but the hospi's were very hospitable 🤔. The night could have been better, but we went to a half hour Mass at the Monastery church, and a blessing afterwards which was nice, but then a volunteer took about an hour, using Google translate, to tell us about the life of St Anthony and then give us a tour of the Monastery. Would've been nice to just sit around and relax for a while before dinner.
      Today was a bit cool and cloudy, nice weather for walking. We met an Australian couple from Melbourne and chatted to them on and off all day. Also chatted to Derya, the Turkish/American, a few times.
      Got to the albergue around 3 or 4. It's pretty good, with sheets and towels and a nice kitchen and common area. There's a cafe next door so we might just get a hamburger or something for dinner.
      Last night in bunk beds! and as pilgrims! so Santiago tomorrow morning and then we'll be tourists for a couple of days 😔
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