Hotel San Anton Abad (70€)
Anna has set out a thermos of coffee, croissants and toast. We are out at 7:20 AM and it is still dark. We take a shortcut over the open fields with the full moon setting before us… breathtaking. We rejoin the Camino next to the highway. It is a beautiful day, clear and blue. We stop for C and CC. It’s market day in this town, and the atmosphere quite festive. We walk through four towns this morning, all old and charming. We stop again at 12:30 PM for another C and CC, plus ice cream. We pass caves that appear to have been lived in. Hermits? We pass the ruins of a sixth century monastery, and arrive in Villa Franca at 2:00. We are staying at a restored monastery, with our room modest but just fine. Down to lunch in the main dining room… Bonnie: ensalada mista, beefsteak with fries / Nick: garlic soup, beef stew and helado. We enjoy a nap, then out we go to explore the town. It is bisected by a major highway and huge trucks roll through this squeezed-down route, one after another… scary. In the plaza by the church, we are entertained by a group of women bowling the ancient game of ten-pins. Great fun, for them and for us. We wander back to our hotel and have a very poor salad outside on the patio. Two kittens cavort underfoot.