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    • Day 41

      Sarria to Portomarin

      May 31, 2022 in Spain ⋅ 🌧 18 °C

      I had an early start with the sun just rising again. The first hour was hard while my body woke up and I argued with myself whether I could do this or not. But then things got easier and I began to enjoy it.

      I think some of it may have been the large and noisy groups (even at 6am) racing past me. There are so many who began their Camino today and I felt old and slow and dusty beside them. But they did slow down as the kilometres added up and their feet began to hurt like the rest of us.

      I had a delicious pizza for lunch when I arrived and I’ve got another private room which is bright and airy.

      Unfortunately I’ve developed a reaction to the strapping tape and my calves are a bit of a mess. But luckily I met up with Nicole the physio from Brisbane this evening and she had a few ideas for me to try.

      It’s raining now and the forecast for the next few days is rain. Hopefully they are wrong but we are in Galicia now so it is to be expected I guess.

      Albergue-Pensión Manuel
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    • Day 21


      June 8, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 66 °F

      Much quieter start today. Ancient road with walls on each side and trees grown into the walls. I get that twitch I get and break out my rain gear. Other pilgrims smirk and shake their heads, but in 200m a light spritzy, evanescence, just enough to wet you through hits and I hike on by as they dig out their kit. More ancient stone farm buildings. I meet an older man having a pipe while leaning on his bike. I see that he has an artificial leg, a really expensive metal one with an articulating knee joint. As I climb the steep hill, he hops on the bike charging hard and passes me. An inspiration. I link up again with Dave and Gerry Jones. Before reaching the bridge to Portomarin I face three choices. The choices are borne out on a board.: go right and stay safe, go left (the ancient way) which clearly leads to injury and death and a further route in green. I go left and where the two part are more indications of death with pictures showing a narrow steep slot canyon with no steps on the ancient middle way, I stick to the far left green route and am rewarded with life. I reach the bridge and ring the Liberty Bell, then I read the sign indicating that if I ring the bell, I am morally obligated to visit the sister city of Portomarin. Dave and Gerry wait for me on the other side. The bridge spans 500 over a fjord of water from a vast lake to the north. I arrive too early for checkin and wind up chatting with Dave and Gerry over a long 2 beer calzone lunch. Check in, shower and a machine laundry wash and dry set up in a garage in the hotel parking lot. This is the swankiest place in Portomarin a three star Parador called the Pousada de Portomarin…a nice treat. Laundry is 4€ with automatic soap, dry for 3€, the cheapest so farRead more

    • Day 6

      Second day

      April 12 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

      Hola it’s Eloise

      Today was our second day of the Camino and we did about 10 km. We saw lots of cool things like mini waterfalls, flowers and giant bees 🐝 (there is a photo for you)!

      And today was a very exciting day because we passed the 100 km to Santiago sign! We got lots of photos of it.

      Anyway it’s time for Spanish word of the day: today’s word is adiós which means goodbye 👋!

      Hope you liked this little post and I will see you later

      From Eloise
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    • Day 41

      Sarria - Vilacha

      May 24, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

      Goodmorning, etwas später gestartet heute, war nicht mehr so motiviert. Wir lassen Sarria hinter uns. Jetzt ist es schon wieder viel besser nach dem 1. Stop in Barbadelo, ich habe etwas „Heimweh “. Ich weiß aber in ein paar Tage habe ich mein lange ersehntes Ziel gut erreicht. Optimistisch sein und das bin ich, ich bekomme mein vertrautes Gefühl wieder zurück. Das geht auch gar nicht anders, man kann sich hier nur erfreuen an eine traumhafte Natur. Vögel Gezwitscher, herrlicher Landluft, kleine uralte Dörfer, Kirchen und Kloster die man nur aus dem Film “der Name der Rose” kennt. Ich denke oft daran, wie die Pilger früher gereist sind, das waren schon andere Umstände und ich empfinde tiefen Respekt. Wir haben dicke Wanderschuhe, Smartwool Socken, Smartwool Shirts, Winddichte Jacken und Regenschutzkleidung, Schlafsäcke und Cremes für jedes Körperteil. Haben zu Essen , Trinken und Pilgermenüs und das für kleines Geld. Uns geht es nur gut.
      Heute sind es nur 23 Km. Es regnet wieder, bis jetzt konnte ich mich noch gut schützen unter dem dichten Laub. Also mein Poncho wieder anziehen und fleißig weitermachen, nach 10 Minuten suche ich doch etwas Schutz in einer alten Scheune, ich setze mich neben dem alten Trecker und zwischen Kaminholz was lecker riecht.
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    • Day 24

      Sarria to Portomarin

      May 24, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

      25km - ek drink koffie en praat nonsens met die amerikaners tot 9am. My teorie is dat ek so die stormloop dorp uit sal mis. Nie eers 40 min later voel dit soos n maraton. Groepe toeriste en skole wat klip hard praat, niemand groet, en spoed loop sonder om na enigiets te kyk. Daar is rommel langs die pad en elke slak is road kill.

      Dalk die les van die dag; inleiding in die samelewing na amper 4 weke op die pad.

      Gelukkig ontmoet ek n paar goeie siele, Ellie van Hermanus en Erin van Ohio. Ons eet die lekkerste middagete by n “dinotivo” en kla oor die Camino inval. N vriendelike mini-mensie hardloop die plek en is erg trots op haar heerlike gebak.

      Die hele dorp van Portomarin is steen vir genommerde steen verskuif tot bo op die bult nadat die dam gebou is in die 1960’s.
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    • Day 31

      Day 31: Sarria a Portomarin

      May 30, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

      Slight headache this morning on account of the chupitos last night! But I make it out of the albergue in one piece, no later than 6. An early start rewards me with a beautiful blanket of mist throughout the town and I make my way into the countryside.

      Pure magic today, an absolutely beautiful walk. The path feels ancient, twisted trees line either side and gorgeous countryside in every direction. Feels special and demands silence as I walk through the mist.

      I stop at a hut because I spot Yorkshire tea!! Turns out a man called Richard has bought a little house and offers British tea for a donation. I enjoy a cup of tea with him and he tells me about his life. He also has military parents, and now works as a translator and moves between Spain and York. He tells me about his passion for Yorkshire ales, and shipped me his collection of beer mats. As we part ways, gifts me one of the mats. I am happy!

      A couple of climbs, and it really feels like Galicia now. All the smells from my childhood, the smell of the damp earth and forest. The mist still hangs throughout the day.

      I don’t take many photos today as I just experience it. But I do make it to 100km mark; a good and bad thing. A great achievement and a chapter closing. I reach the stunning town of Portomarin around 11.30, utterly bewitched by the landscape. I feel quiet and contemplative.

      The day is spent milling around the town, having some food, eating with Kevin from Germany and then later with Hodges, Nico and a group of Americans. In good company today.

      Tomorrow I make my way closer to Santiago!
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    • Day 22

      Portomarin to Vendas de Naron

      June 9, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 57 °F

      Three good long climbs. Today I met Nacho from Alembres, a 25 year old business data consultant. Good talks about food and our countries. Feeling better today. Last night headache and stomach upset. Out of Portomarin another long bridge and another split in The Camino. I follow my Seattle APoC training and head left, but in half a mile I am stopped by four Spainiards who were worried they went the wrong way and hadn’t seen a fletcha Amarillo. I told them Camino Historico LEFT, Camino Complementario RIGHT…Mi Amiga Peregrina says Always left. 2 mas kilometers, no flecha..devoluciones. 100 m later there was a marker! Big Cheers and Left, Left, Left. Saw them at lunch and they said Americano Left! Well, I am from Seattle! LolRead more

    • Day 34

      Approaching Portomarin

      June 20, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 55 °F

      Pilgrims from Latvia Ralf and Guenta ( second Latvian couple I meet on The Way)

      They got LIBERTY BELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can you even believe it?!?!?

      And I tell you...I got SERIOUS vertigo crossing that bridgeRead more

    • Day 11

      Back on the trail. Portomarin

      June 24, 2022 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

      After a rough night of buses and transfers and masks and more buses, we made it to Sarria. The taxi was waiting for me with a sign. (I’ve always wanted that!) We had him take us to the 100km (to go) marker and we hiked from there in very little sleep. It was only about 8km and everyone was a trooper. It was a beautiful hike and perfect weather. The crowds are thicker and the pilgrims are less athletic. (I saw a3 year old hiking!)

      We took the bus to Sarria (the train was broken) with some girls from Boston and they had been traveling for 36 hours. They missed their train and there was no chance of getting on another one. They looked beat.

      It feels good to be back on the trail and I’m glad we chose to continue. When you have a goal in mind, it is hard to let go. We are all tired and ready for bed at 6pm but glad to be back in action. By the way, our housing tonight is an entire apartment with 3 bedrooms and two bathrooms. We decided to go to the grocery store and pick up frozen pizzas for dinner rather than wait for the Spanish eating time of 7pm. It was a good move but the bar outside my window is a bit raucous. I bet I’m so tired it won’t matter. Daniel is already asleep. He can sleep anywhere and he sure is tired. (Even he admitted though that he’s glad to be back on the trail.)
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    • Day 28


      August 13, 2022 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 21 °C

      Portomarin is all my deepest Camino fears and dislikes come alive. I am sleeping in a room with 129 other pilgrims, 95 percent of which started this morning in Sarria and are celebrating their time away from parents or spouses with copious amounts of alcohol.

      The Way echoes hiking sticks without rubber caps (why one would need hiking sticks in suburban Galicia is beyond me). You're on the Camino, not in the Arctic, get some rubber caps.

      There are boom boxes playing Spanish rap, groups blocking the way, lines in front of toilets, and more. Oh and prices have quadrupled.

      It's the final test before Santiago. I shall not fail.
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Portomarín, Portomarin, Puertomarín, ポルトマリン, Пуэртомарин, Портомарін, 波尔托马林

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