Surprise! The ninos e ninas quieted down within a hour. No yelps, running down the halls. At breakfast, they waited patiently to be served. Most had blank stares. The previous day walk must have been taxing. I wanted to nominate their chaperones for sainthood. What a well behaved group of pre-teenagers.
The Camino seemed more crowded today. I had to take my time because my pick-up point for my hotel was only 12 miles away. I had six hours to get there. Besides trying to master the slow walk, I took to Camino watching. It was fun to do. No pressure. For the second day, no clouds or signs of possible rain.
Entrepreneurs seemed to be stationed here and there along the path. Besides their goods, the displays of a Camino stamp were lures. No such peddlers were seen on the CP. Also, the bars were more numerous, larger, and upscale. I had my fill of cafe con leche before I got to my hotel — too early for cerveza cana. The prices were noticeably higher. Pilgrims certainly were helping the local economy.
I have sounded somewhat negative about these last days of the Camino. Indeed, they have been different from the experiences on the Primitivo. I started to think that seeing so many pilgrims and curbside services may have been what the Camino was like over the centuries. Pilgrims were coming from far and wide. As they neared Santiago, their paths merged. They needed shelters from albergues to comfortable inns, places to eat, peddlers for souvenirs and goods, and even masseuses just like today.
My hotel (O Muino da Peña Tarroeira) is a few km off the route. It was once a grain mill and the mill race still ran next to it.. I was composing this blog under one of the umbrellas in the patio. My room was spacious and the mattress was firm; most importantly, it was quiet. I was located downstairs from the entrance by a lounge area. This place was one of my three favorites on this Camino.
Tonight was my last pre-paid dinners. It was one of my three favorite dinners that coincidentally matched my three favorite hotels. The classic chicken or the egg problem — is it the room or the food? In these cases, both. BTW, the breakfast was excellent.
Four dishes were served. The first was warm Galician cheese in a tart followed by sautéed prawns. The main course was Galician beef — really tender and juicy — with Padron peppers that are the chubby version of shishitos. The dinner ended with toasted bread covered in not too sweet caramel sauce topped with ice cream that had the texture of a semi-freddo. Teresa, the chef and major domo of the hotel, runs a superb establishment. I’ll come back here anytime.
I’ll end this series of blogs with observations and reflections about this trip. I will include ratings of my hotels in case anyone travels to these locations in the future. They were all satisfactory — clean and comfortable; however, a few stood out for commendation.
Tomorrow is my walk into Santiago. Been there done that or is that so? I am reminded of Ichi-go Ichi-e that Aoyama-San, my friend from ohenro, first pointed out. Every moment of every encounter is unique and will never happen again. What will my feelings be when I return to Santiago?
3 thoughts on “Day 13 (18 May) Like Caminos Of The Past? — 12 Miles”
Another amazing journey. Thank you for taking us along.
Another wonderful walk coming to an end! I’ll miss waking up to your vivid descriptions of the countryside, windmills on the mountains, and sometimes, solitude on the road. Please start another soon!!
Ron, Ive enjoyed all of your posts and felt like I was on the Camino with you. I will be sending along photos of the Grand Canyon hike me and my friends took yesterday. Just one of the hardest things I have ever done. Travel safe my good friend!