Another early start but we are not the first. As we leave our keys in the box, there is already a set in there and we can see pilgrims up the road. The hill is telling straight away. We start to gain on those ahead of us, but before long any advantage we have is lost as we to succumb to the drain on our legs. We follow the road and pass the turn off for Salime. It would have been a short cut yesterday had someone not put a lake in the way. We are taken off-road a few times to cut corners but the extra climb negates any advantage. It is nearly 6k to Grandes de Salime and we are ready for breakfast when we arrive. The first two streets were full of bars all closed. I was not impressed so we carried on. Further through the village we finally came to an open bar, seems this is just past the alburgue, so that is why it open.
We sat surrounded by early morning pilgrims all knowing it was a shorter day today, except for those of us who had already done 6k. The long and The Short were here as well and at last we had a chance to talk. They were Suzanna and Mikel from Croatia, so I was not that far out in my estimation. Because they were mostly camping they were able to go the Hospitales route and had camped on the top. I must admit to feeling slightly envious, they had a shorter day yesterday as well as the great views. Compensation, I suppose for carrying the tent everywhere.
The German shadow appeared here as well, his name is Robert and he had not been waiting for anyone he was travelling alone. We had been gradually gaining on him since we left the hotel and now we were destined to travel together more or less for a couple of days.
6k down the road we came to Castro and a chance for another coffee and sit down. Then we have more climbing up to the windmills, I have seen too many now and am not enamored to climb to see any more. After a short descent we arrive at El Acebo and Galica. The book says no food, but there were pinchos and beer good enough to keep us going.
As we leave another bar full of pilgrims we climb again, now I feel genuine sympathy for Don Quixote as we ascend just to see more windmills. We have climbed and descended so often today I am surprised we arrive at only 5:30. We stop at the first place we pass Casa Manolo. Good clean room with a view of the cattle, not much space to dry washing, but hey ho.
They only do menu here and we have eaten quite well today so a big meal is not what we want so we explore the town. Did I say we did not see the French couple again? Well we saw them once crossing the street, they did not see us and we never spoke. We walked past the alburgue and the church but we never saw them again.
We walked down the street and found a place where we could get a salad. The next table was full of Italians they were the life and soul of the place. Now we seem to be surrounded by pilgrims at every turn.