Day 27 22nd day walking
Well I got up OK, but I was not feeling at my best. Viv had seen a place where you could get breakfast early, so we headed over there.
I made her have the eggs and bacon, because she had eaten nothing since yesterday afternoon. The sight and smell of all that fried stuff nearly made me ill again. I tried to get some yogurt but they had non so I settled for a Cacoa, a bottled milk shake. That was about all my stomach could handle.
We set off out of the town, over yet another bridge for Viv to photograph. Down another straight road. The trees here were young so we did not even have the benefit of the shade. In truth though, we did not need shade at this hour of the day.
We stopped at an albergue on the outskirts of Puente Villarente, where we confused the lady serving. We always ask for Cafe con leche en vaso (in a glass), because we like it milky. This must be the only bar in Spain that has not heard of this. She gave us a white coffee and a glass. This bar also had no yogurt or even the Cacoa, so I asked her to fill the glass with milk for me. She gave me a strange look, but seemed to understand when I said “estoy enfirmo”. We were treated to rousing Bach followed by Strausse, from the sound system, not the barmaid. Somehow I cannot listed to The Blue Danube without thinking of 2001, a space odysey.
The road from here on in was pretty industrial and we had to stop on a lump of concrete for a break. We saw some familiar faces pass by, the guy from Kent with his wife, the girl from Canada who is always ahead of her group, one of the Koreans who was not a part of the caterpiller. They all thought our choice of rest spot a bit odd, but I need regular breaks, so needs must.
We arrived at the outskirts of Leon at yet another bridge, Puente Castro. There were a couple of local police directing pilgrims. I got a city map and asked about accomodation, he directed me to a hotel near to the Cathedral. When I pointed out it was three star and probably too dear, he said it was an albergue with rooms. I had my doubts, but supposed he knew.
It was getting very coffee time so we were on the lookout for somewhere to stop. We were a bit unsure of the place, it did not look much from the outside but while we pondered an American guy came out and sort of talked us in.
It was actually very nice inside, I said the owner should prop an old rucksack by the door to attract pilgrims in. The American never stopped talking, he was from New York but lived in Pamplona. Appparently the guy at the bar was a beer expert, we should go and see the bassilica at San Isidro, and on he went.
When we tried to leave he insisted on showing us the way. There is a bar where you can get frogs legs and snails. He actually got us lost at one point, that is the problem with having a guide from New York. He had his picture taken with us then left us on the street we wanted. then he was off to see his bassilica.
I was not wrong about the hotel, Hotel Spa Paris. It is 55e a night but we can use the spa. I am not sure what we do in a spa but we may check it out tomorrow.
We found some silver shell earings for Viv at a shop nearby. A proper souvenier of the camino.
Eventually we had to go for some food, (although I was not up to eating) this city break is not going to be what I hoped, but Viv was starving. We found a sort of American diner and ordered a salad and nachos to share. I just picked at it but at least Viv had a good feed. I downed two glasses of coke though, it seemed to help somewhat.
We met a few pilgrims from the road, everyone passes the same way eventually.
We then left for a confiteria for coffee and cake, again I just picked. I only agreed to have the cake so that Viv would have one.
We found a farmacia and got myself some stomach pills, and even though we had the night free we still crawled into bed by ten.
It seems that big cities in Spain no longer have the lavendarias or launderettes. So we tried to get our washing done in the Hotel. At a minimum of 3e per item this was not going to happen, so Viv used all the shower gel they had supplied and washed most of our stuff in the sink. A special thanks to Irene here, the dental floss was pure genius. I never would have thought of using it for washing line.
Day 27 22nd day walking