Casa Morgade (27€)
What is it about 12 kilometer days?!! If not long, why are they so hard?!! Like this one. It begins to rain as we walk up the very steep stairs to a church to get our credenciales stamped, then cover our packs and proceed up and out of town. Mud, rain, mud, rain –as we climb on and reach a plateau. Rain now coming and going. The countryside is lovely, green pastures with wildflowers blooming and birds singing. Stone markers denote our progress, ever so slowly counting off each ½ kilometer to the city of Santiago de Compostela. We started at 112 out of Sarria and will go to 99.5 at Casa Morgade. Rain becomes hail, then eases off. We stop for a C&CC and rest for fifteen minutes. Then, off again… mud, pastures, barnyard smells (lots today, ever more pungent in the damp) and some curious narrow buildings that are built up high with ventilating slats. ??? We reach the Camino’s 100 kilometers-to-go marker… a mess plastered with graffiti. And we fervently hope the dreary place we’re walking through is not our home for the night. Blessedly, it is not and around the corner we find our welcoming stone inn. Lots of pilgrims hanging out. crowding the place for lunch. When we try to explain that we have reservations, no one speaks English but somehow we agree to whatever it is we need to agree to, find our duffel (as always, Hurray!) and ascend the stairs to our room… small. stone-walled, reasonably cheery. A little cold and damp, but, then, what isn’t? There is a painting on the wall of a lovely beach on the seashore. ???!!! We hang out to dry off and wait for the busy dining room to empty out and then go down to lunch. It is 1:45 PM. The meal is good. Bonnie: caldo Gallego (yum!) and bacon, eggs, and potatoes / Nick: salad, fried meat of some sort with potatoes. We both enjoy tartas de Santiago (18€ total). We share a bathroom with a few other rooms. After waiting my turn, reading and napping fills the afternoon. Dine lightly at 8. Bonnie: caldo Galego / Nick: ensalada mista. Back upstairs to read and sleep.
(Reading is really important, and we recommend that future trekkers carefully choose books that are small, long, and fascinating. Our biggest hit: a two-volume Sherlock Holmes paperback.)