Saturday, June 27, 2009


The way out of Santiago to Finisterre

We got up at about 7am and did our final packing.
"I am SO envious of you walking on" said Marion.
"I wish you were walking with me" I told her.
I checked my cell phone and there was a message from Javier Martin suggesting I send an sms reply so that he culd phone me. When he called he said that the albergue in Corcubion was closed due to a 4 day Fiesta happening right outside the the building. He hopes that it will be open on the 30th when I am suposed to start there. He suggested I ask the hospitalera at Oliveiroa to call Bego at Finisterre to ask when it will open. If it doesn´t open until the 1st July, I might just walk up to Muxia and back. Will play it by ear.
We left the hotel at about 8am and Marion walked with me to the cathedral. The route out of Santiago is past the Parador, down the ramp and stairs and then down the little road out of the city. We had a good bye hug, kiss, kiss, wave, wave and off I went. I came to a 4-Way cross. No arrows, no signs. I opened my pouch for the CSJ notes - nothing there. Bugger!! I remembered clearing out the bag and had left the notes in the room. So, back I went into the city and along the little streets to the hotel. Marion wasn´t there so I asked Fernando´s father to open the room for me. As I waited for him on the 2nd floor, up came Marion, so surprised to see me there.! I collected the notes and out we went again. Second attempt - kiss, kiss, hug, hug, wave, wave and on I went.
I turned to take a last photograph of the towers of the cathedral.
It was a lovely walk, very much ike the CtoC in England. Lots of little hamlets, between houses and backyards, a bit of walking on pavements between villages. About 12kms from Santiago there is a hill just like The Hill on the Camino Ingles, a winding, straight up the mountainside, puff, puff and sweat, sweat hill but only about 2km long - a la Polly Shorts on the Comrades route. I flew up it but was tempted to sit at one of the strategicaly placed benches spaced out on the way up.
As I walked along I imagined that Marion was behind me. At first I pictured her in her blue raincoat, head down and hunchback slogging along. "She must be so hot in that raincoat" I thought and hey presto! the picture changed her into her orange top and bandana hat! There were a few places where I wasn´t sure which direction to take. On one stretch I was about to turn back when a rabbit (hare?) hopped along the path in front of me! "That´s Bunny" I thought "I must be on the right path" and just then there was a concrete marker! So, thanks Bunny! (Bunny is what Marion´s grandchildren call her.)
It is strange how your mind plays tricks on you when you walk alone. If you haven´t seen a yellow arrow for a while you start to imagine them in a pile of yellowed leaves on the ground, or willing them in the yellow moss on the sides of stone barns. Sometimes you are convinced that you have seen an arrow ahead only to find that it was a manifestation of your need to see one but not a painted arrow at all. When you finally do see one, you relax and you increase your walking pace. Thank heaven for D Elias Valeno Sampedro who painted the first yellow arrows way back in the early 1970´s with paint begged from the road department!
I stopped after 2 hours at a little concrete picnic table next to a bridge and had half of a soft Portuguese Roll with Happy Cow spreading cheese and half an apple. A pilgrim passed by. "Parles voux Francais?" he asked.
"No," I said, "English, or un poco Espanol".
"Not many pigrims here" he said. I agreed. He told me that he had left Santiago before 8am but had got lost three times!

Then a bit further on two cyclist pilgrims passed me. I saw the French pilgrim again about an hour later walking up the right hand side of the road past the concrete marker on the opposite side pointing to a lane on the left. I called out and pointed. He threw his hands up in the air and turned back. I bought a cold coke at Casa Pancho cafe-bar in Trasmonte and got a sello there.
I also popped into the Casa at Ponte Maceria for a sello, a beautiful place about 4kms from Nergeira next to a river with a waterfall and a long bridge. The woman told me that they have rooms so I took her leaflet and will let the CSJ know.
The rest of the walk was easy and I arrived at the hotel at about 13h45. I was tempted to go on to the albergue but they have a strict policy of only taking 20 people and it was a bit late to walk another 1km out of town so I just booked into the hotel which is very nice with a special discount for pilgrims.
I passed a supermecado, went inside and bought a small box of creamed veg soup, another roll, 2 bananas, a yoghurt and a coke for tomorrow. I´ve already had half of the soup and poured the other half into the small water bottle to carry onto the next place.
I watched a bit of news on the television and caught the weather forecast which is for rain for the next two days. The views from here to Olveiroa are supposed to be beautiful but there might not be much to see if it is raining and misty. Oh well, whatever will be will be.
I´m now off to try to find a telephone box - the one in the hotel chews euros and doesn´t work with any of my cards. Tomorrow I will walk as far as Santa Marina - 19.5km - and hopefuly stay at the albergue run by the Bar Antelo. Might not be an Internet there so will post again when I can. Adios for now.


Anonymous said...

HI Sylvia
Still keeping a close 'read' on your movements ... Go well as you walk towards the 'end of the world'!

huo c j said...

" a la Polly Shorts "
;-) ;-) ;-)
i was at school in the Natal Midlands.
A fine feel of the day out of S de C

Anonymous said...

Thanks for a very nice blog.My name is Lena and I´m from the north of Sweden. I walk to "the end of the world" in April. And I´m going there next April again. We fell in love with the place Ponte Marceria and want to stay there next time but we didn´t get the adress and phonenumber. We didn´t think we would come back Can you contact me on and share the adress with me. I hope to hear from you. /Lena

CHINI said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Greetings: I am wondering if you would allow me to ask of you for more information about your coast-to-coast walk in England, please? I thank you in advance.

Sil said...

Wow - my Coast to Coast walk was a long time ago! I think you will find more up-to-date information if you do a Google search.