We’ve had our typical breakfast of tostadas (toast) and coffee only to step outside and discover pea soup fog this morning as we leave Fonfria, Spain. Kind of pretty in a surreal way, but not good for viewing scenery.
Hey, you are walking the opposite way! Inquiring minds want to know… We stop to chat and discover he is Australian and walking backwards to meet his wife who is walking with her sister. Hmmm… familiar story here. I play back the camera images from the albergue near Vega de Valcarce and it is confirmed that we are both talking about the same lovely Australian sisters. Technology is useful, even on the Camino.
The trail now descends down to the small hamlet of Pasantes.
We stop for coffee in the town of Triacastela and meet this American woman walking the Camino alone from Burgos to Santiago. Flight landed on her first day at 4:00 p.m. and she started walking immediately, arriving at an albergue at 8 or 9 p.m. after walking in the dark. Brave lady!
We leave Triacastela and need to choose the best route to Sarria. Left or right? O.K., left it is.
This section of the path is steep and slippery and we don’t see any other pilgrims. Are we lost? Did we miss a sign? We come to a fork in the road and see no yellow arrows. Should we turn back? Should we panic? We gingerly trek to the right. Thank goodness... we finally see a yellow arrow.
The Camino takes us along the village of Samos and the Benedictine Monasterio de San Julián de Samos. It was founded in the 6th century by San Martin Dumiense and renovated by San Fructuoso in the 7th century. Unfortunately soon after the monastery was renovated it was abandoned because of the Moorish invasion and it wasn’t until the Asturian King Fruela I reconquered the area did the monks return. Some years later King Fruela was assassinated and the monks gave refuge to the King’s wife and son, who was later to become Alfonso II of Asturias. Because of this the monastery was granted royal protection. ~ Galicia Guide
Finally, we reach the town of Sarria. How much further to the albergue? Elizabeth and Bryon have gone ahead to get us booked into the albergue in time so we try to make radio contact now. We make contact and we must keep going through town to the other side. A-r-g-h…
Really, this many steps? We’ve already gone about 30 + kilometers (extra credit since we find out later that we took the long route) and we are hungry and tired. Our albergue is at the top of these stairs, but at least we see the yellow arrow indicating it is on the Camino route.
O.K., here we go... anything for a bed to sleep in tonight.