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Camino de Santiago, Day 24: Villarmentero de Campos to Calzadilla de la Cueza

Pilgrim

Pilgrim

The cream that the Norwegian woman gave me is magic!  It must have some holy crap in it because it performed miracles.  Today, my feet are great!  No bandages!  I slathered my feet with enough Vaseline to give 100 enemas (my nursing years still haunt me) and put on two pairs of socks.  On went the Crocs and out the door I went.

I left the hotel early – about 6:30 am. This day was intense because of the boredom.  A long, straight, trail with no diversion and no changes.

First I walked about 6 kilometers on a straight gravel path and had the blessing of a cup of coffee.  If you had told me a couple months ago, that I would have to walk 4 miles to get a cup of coffee, I would have laughed in your face.  Now, it’s a reality.  And I accept it as normal.  And it makes that first cup of coffee really good.

Several more miles and I arrived in Carrion which is a larger town.  I immediately saw two very large women that I met yesterday. Wow, I said. You got here early!”  “Oh!” one said, “We took a taxi.  How was the road?”  Jesus Christ people! You saw the road from the taxi, didn’t you? It sucked!   “It was very long and straight and boring”, I said. and I suffered through it because I’m WALKING the Camino.  “Our feet hurt.”  Well, no shit Sherlock!  Why do you think that is?!  Maybe it’s the excess 200 pounds of weight your carrying and not losing because you’re taking a taxi from town to town like an invalid. I don’t care if you walk 5 kilometers a day, and obviously, nobody cares what I think, but for God sakes WALK the Camino.  One said, “We want to go home.”  Yes please do.  Tell everyone how you walked the Camino and show them your stamps to prove it. Lazy asses.  I don’t know why I care so much.  It’s their Camino, right?  WHY DO I CARE?!  WHY am I so judgmental?  THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ME.

There was a long stretch of walking on the road, on pavement, which makes my skeleton creak.  I much prefer the softer ground and the satisfying crunch of gravel under my feet.

I then proceeded to walk the next stretch which, according to books is 16.9 kilometers, with no town in between.  I only saw three other pilgrims the whole way and all of us had the same look of mind-numbing boredom on our faces.  The path is a Roman road, the original Camino, straight through flat fields that went on and on and on and on and on and on with no village to stop in or fountain to drink from.  The sun was blazing and  I covered my head with a scarf to protect myself.  I looked like Sheik Walkaballaca.  I realized my nose was still vulnerable so I grabbed a leaf off a tree, spit on it and adhered it to the proboscis.  It did the trick.

Was today a test of patience?  Or a reminder that sometimes we have really long stretches in life that are really boring and eventually they come to an end?  Or an opportunity to watch the wheels of your mind spin like they’ve been greased and put in a hurricane?  I don’t know.  But it was hard.

And at the end was an alburgue which had a bed for me and a nice sunny spot to relax.  I bought a piece of cake at the one bar in town and a coffee and hit the hay.

Today I walked 26.8 kilometers (16.6 miles).

Photos of the Day:

 

3 Comments

  1. hahaha I love what you didn’t say and I feel you! I can’t believe how far behind I am and how much walking you did every day…wow.

  2. Those people who do not put in the effort are annoying but don’t forget that besides being annoying to others, they are actually robbing themselves as well. YOU are putting in the work and therefore are rewarded with a real experience, and the chances to learn from it, and YOU experience all those amazing things you are taking pictures of and more. There is no similar beauty and learning in the taxi method. So they will have spent some time and money and they will go home with something, but YOU will have something much richer. You can’t cheat your way to what you are experiencing.

    • You’re right. And I actually have finally gotten to the point where I don’t care now, a few days later.

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