La Casa el Cura (140€, inc. lunch and dinner)
We have breakfast in a comfy bar right on the path and watch many of our friends pass by, including Peter and Hermann. This town seems so industrial, ugly, and graffitied up. We detour from the Camino to the Plaza Mayor, where there are well-tended stone walkways and a variety of churches. The city has some beauty after all. We next try to find the correct route… there are two. We figure this out, cross over N-28 (a highway), and head toward Calzado de Coto. It is a small, closed-up town. Darn, no snacks!
We forge on to our goal, another 8 kilometers. The Roman road has been widened here (for no apparent reason) and is flat and lifeless. We walk on into pretty country with at least five kinds of oaks. Once again the eerie couple passes us traveling in the opposite direction! We have now seen them five times. So weird! We arrive at our town at 12:15 PM. It appears an upscale little community. There are even signs to our Casa Rural, La Casa el Cura… Hurray! We are greeted by a cordial woman who sets us up in #6, a darling room with a big bed. We enjoy a hearty lunch on the porch, sharing delicious salad and ham and cheese sandwiches. Almost all the places we have stayed have had wonderful bathtubs… one of Spain’s better points. We are up at 6:00 from our nap and walk around the town. The Roman road is a point of local pride; it went on to Astorga… and the gold to be mined there. We visit a lovely little frog pond. There is a pasture nearby and a flock of sheep; the landscape is sylvan. We return to our Casa and enjoy dinner on the porch. Bonnie: spaghetti, beef cheeks, and lemon mousse / Nick: vegetable soup, beef stew, and flan.