Dire Warnings

Caldadilla de la Cueza to Sahagun
Monday 17 November

I didn’t sleep well, my feet hurt, but my heart hurt more, I couldn’t stop thinking about my Camino Angel’s pain. I wished I could take it away.

Today the weather was better, and the three of us were in a chatty mood. We breakfasted in the same bar we had had dinner. As we were leaving, the barmaid, who seemed overly paranoid, gave us all sorts of warnings – that gangs of thieves pretending to be pilgrims roam the Camino, that woman shouldn’t walk alone, and that we will be photographed doing a bush wee. We thought the warnings were unlikely in winter… and what would be done with the photos? I suggested there may be a website ‘pissing on the Camino dot com’. We would have to look that up later.

We were all in a good mood, and had planned a shorter walk today. We were hoping to catch up with the rest of our friends in a day or two. Around lunch time we stopped in Moratinos at the first bar we encountered. It was like walking into an Ikea showroom. Clean smart and new, out of place in this crumbling old little town, where many of the houses were underground with chimneys and antennas poking out of the ground. We ate a delicious lunch which included a Santiago cake, a traditional almond dessert.

We continued on, chatting together. The day passed quickly, and we soon arrived in Sahagun. We were all sore and tired, and wanted to find an Alburgue. The lovely looking old municipal Alburgue had moved to it’s winter home, a boring looking suburban house, by my Camino Angel wanted to stay with the nuns in the convent, but it was also closed for the winter. Our only option was the municipal. When we entered, it was actually very nice, five rooms with three beds in each. We left our bags, and decided to find a bar. Miss Venezuela started to put on makeup, we berated her, saying we wanted to go and there would only be old men to impress. How right we were. The Alburgue was near an old peoples home and the closest bar was full of its inmates. The pensioners were surprised to see us, but after the initial excitement, went back to their poker game.

We had read that there was a pilgrims blessing in the town at seven. We were hungry, but decide to feed our souls before we fed our stomachs, so left to find it. The church bells were ringing, but the only church we could find was a ruin. Our Spanish speaking friend asked around, and there was a service in the chapel at the old peoples home. We went, but it was only a regular mass, not a pilgrims blessing. Not blessed again.

We dined, then returned for a good sleep.


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