Hotel O Cebreio (89€, inc. dinner and breakfast)
The weather is clear, about time! We’ll see. Breakfast at 8:30 AM, then out the door at 9:10 for a BIG CLIMB, 550 meters/1800 feet!!! Two hours up, we stop at La Faba and have CC&C, plus ice cream for Nick. We have climbed 600 feet and have 1200 to go… trudge, trudge, trudge, up, up, up and the vistas are breathtaking. Trudge (slow and deliberate) takes the pain out of going steeply up and not only makes it possible but even pleasant. We keep running into Italians, everywhere… such is la Vida! We pass another little town and keep going up until finally at 1:00 PM we are in O Cebrerio, a picturesque town up “on top” of a mountain world. It boasts the oldest church on the Camino, dating to the 800s AD. We are in Galicia now, a province that has Celtic roots – evidenced by recorded bagpipes wailing and wheezing in the town’s souvenir shops. Nick is in picture-taking mode, with Bonnie holding his gear. Not really grumpy about this, but sort of. We find our hotel, go to our room, drop stuff off, and head downstairs for lunch. It is 2, and the place is just starting to fill up (and is going full tilt when we leave at 3:30). We’re hungry. Nick: cocida sopa, veal steak with fries, flan / Bonnie: ensalada mista, caldo Galega (Galician soup), tarta de Santiago (all for 20€ inc. wine, as with every meal, everywhere). In the gift shop I buy a blue Camino shirt listing its hundreds of towns in yellow; we’ll be passing through every last one! I also buy a cozy for my head and ears. Around town for more pictures… I am freezing and testy. Then hot B and welcome N. We then confirm two reservations and dress warmly to further investigate the town… Old, Old, Old, with Celtic-style stone houses with thatched roofs. Same place for dinner, with seats next to a window. Outside, rain becomes snow. A couple from Switzerland joins us, nice folks. The weather is roiling around us and is grand… a burst of sunlight, a rush of dense fog, then sleet and snow… SKY OPERA! Bonnie: garlic soup, potato omelet, and flan /Nick: caldo Gallego, ensalada mista, tarta de Santiago.