Hotel Tamar (60€)
As if we hadn’t walked far enough, we’ve decided to continue on to Finisterre, for the longest time the end of the known world. We’re up at 7 AM, haul our duffel to the front desk at 8, go to breakfast (again a big deal), and then utilize wi-fi in the library until the signal disappears. Oh well! We chat with two Australians we met back in Villa Franca del Bierzo, who remember us and fill us in on their trip to Finisterre. They say it was magical and give us some places to look up. We check out at 10 and, well aware of the endless slog in and out of Santiago, take a cab to Rio Tambre (30€). So far, we’ve walked every last foot of the Camino, but now, off the main, classic route, there’s room for an exception our two. Our sweet if somewhat clueless driver is taken by the beauty of the area, especially the “Grand Plunge” to the sea from the highway we’ll be traveling. He also says that from here to the coast there are brujos (wizards) who say they know everything, and know nothing! He stops several times to ask for directions to the trail, and finally here we are, further along than we expected due to a couple of missed turns. So in a little over an hour through fog and mist we arrive in Negreia. It’s warmer here than in Santiago. And few if any pilgrims on the trail. Our room is not ready, so we relax in the cafeteria: C&CC plus a tot of wine and a tide-us-over bacon sandwich. Up to our simple room at 12:45 PM for some pack repacking, then it’s WHOOP! WHOOP! as good old Jacotrans comes through with our duffel. A small rest, then down and out and around the corner to an asador Nick had spied. It’s cozy and quaint and the bartender from upstairs is our host. Great food… Nick has the avowed steak of his lifetime and I have a wonderful ensalada mista. Fabulous Rioja wine, gracious service… Toto’s Restaurante! (really!). B+N, good reading. At the moment, it’s Donna Leon’s Fatal Remedies for me, and Nick is reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s This Side of Paradise on my iPad, a first encounter with electronic bookery. He’s not sure whether it works for him or not. Into town at 8… NO to single-choice pizza parlor, so back up the street to our cafeteria. Bonnie: BLT and cheese on a French roll / Nick: steak sandwich with cheese on a French roll. Gin and tonic for Nick; wine for Bonnie. To bed.