Camino Day 32: Laguna de Castilla to Triacastela 23km

The guide book specifies 6 stages beyond today and I expect to finish the Camino in 6 days. That means walking into Santiago de Compostela on Thursday 22 October. If it all goes to plan.

The guidebook’s suggested destination for tomorrow’s stage 28 is Sarria. Sarria is around 115km from Santiago de Compostela. It is also the last town of any size on the Camino before Santiago de Compostela. Sarria has a population of app 13,000.

That will likely mean a massive influx of turigrinos from Sarria onwards. Or “Compostela seekers” as I also started to call them.

You see, these psuedo pilgrims will walk the absolute minimum requirement of 100km. So that they can receive the Compostela, the certificate of “achievement”.

The guidebook “warns” about the more competition for beds in allergies from Sarria onwards.

I am sure that I will also see more tourist buses and “tourists” with day packs only or even without any backpacks.

Back to regular programming now since I now have had my little spat…

 …..

Deb, Win and I took off in the dark from Laguna de Castilla as the hostel bar was dark and closed and hence no breakfast on offer. The boys and Sophie were still in the albergue as we left.

Unfortunately that also meant that we did not see the Galicia border sign. It was due somewhere just beyond Laguna de Castilla where we had spent the night.

The first Galician town is O’Cebriero 150 meter higher and 2 km away from Laguna de Castilla.

O’Cebreiro Iglesia looked mystical, spooky and gloomy at predawn.

After a bit of breakfast in O’Cebriero, we took off as the sun began to show itself.

Unfortunately we did exactly what I found out later that the guide book warned about. I quote “many pilgrims miss the track and take the asphalt in error”. Yep, you can now include us three pilgrims into that crowd.

The pilgrim track and the main road come together later in the settlement of Linares so no damage done. One of the crosses at Linares church provided an interesting shadow.

At Alto de San Roque a bit further, there is an imposing statue of a medieval pilgrim.

That imposing medieval pilgrim again together two more recent and much less imposing pilgrims. Me and Deb. In the shadows.

A new type of Camino marker began appearing in Galicia, see below. The markers showed irregular distances where they sometimes marked half kilometres as well.

The distances did not correspond that well with distances in the guide book either. One can only assume that road changes over time have altered those distances.

Today’s Camino was again beautiful. Green, lots of rolling hills. A bit like Ireland and there is a partial Gaelic background to the people of Galicia. The Irish would have loved it here. Galicia would have reminded them of home.

From a distance I could see this herd of cattle taken from one pasture across the road and onto another.

I could have taken many more photos of the beautiful landscape today. I restrained myself. Photos from places like here tend to look flat in a photographic 2D environment as you lose that 3D vision.

There were several rural hamlets close to today’s destination of Triacastela. That meant that the pilgrims needed to look out for those brown puddles on the ground. They were everywhere.

Outside one farm, the donkey and the hitchhiking cat combination was particularly funny.

There were chooks, roosters and dogs around the animals above as well. Rural indeed. Another picture from this rural part of Galicia.

Win had walked ahead of Deb and me today. That meant that our names were already on the reservation list at Complex Xacobeo, tonight’s albergue in Triacastela. Win had organised that. Thank you, Win!

By 3pm, Ben, Aaron and Sophie arrived at the Triacastela as well. A couple of pics from downtown Triacastela.

My dinner was a pre-packaged microwavable paella marinara from the supermercado. 2€. Not too bad a meal but likely with a lot of salt in it.

The paella wasn’t enough to fill me up so I had a can of sardines in olive oil with crackers to supplement it. I love that stuff.

This Camino cheese from the supermercado tempted me… No, it didn’t.

I had a most relaxing evening in the mild and lovely Galicia climate. I even sat outside at the back of the albergue in Triacastela for a while. Yes, I expected the “worst” in Galicia.

No alcohol tonight but some chocolate and crisps treats. Heck, I am walking towards those 500 miles…

651km walked. 134km left to walk after Day 32

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