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European Peace Walk: Day 10: Szentpeterfa, Hungary to Orimagyarosd, Hungary

Bunk cots and blankets in

Bunk cots and blankets in Szentpeterfa, Hungary.

I wake and stumble into the garden in a half-stupor, hoping the morning air will breathe some life into me.  During the night, the temperature dropped dramatically and with only my silk sleeping bag and the provided lap blanket I shivered throughout the night despite going to bed fully dressed.  My fellow walkers shared my sleepless experience.  We’re PeaceWalking zombies.

The group decides to take a bus the entire way today and even Senja, the youngest and most determined of our group has reached the point of exhaustion, relinquishing power to the bus gods.  Raymond, our local helper, has enlisted a minibus to take us the distance.

I sit in the middle of the van with Gerry from Liverpool beside me.  Gerry not only offers my closest brush with the Beatles, having gone to grade school with Ringo Starr’s ex-wife, but he is the musician of the group and he fills the role beautifully.  He serenades us with Love Me Tender in deep baritone which momentarily takes me out of this sweltering van rolling through Hungary and into the sweet arms of Elvis.

Because we are arriving at our next destination earlier than expected we will need to prepare our own breakfast. Raymond makes a stop at Tesco which sends me into a shopping frenzy.  Greens!  I need greens!  And cheese!  Feeling insecure about when the next palatable food will be available, I overstock myself with arugula, three kinds of cheese, rolls, pretzels, chips, bananas, instant noodles and a big bar of chocolate to replace some of the fat I’ve lost along the way.  My insecurity turns out to be completely unnecessary as we will soon be in the hands of wonderful hosts.  But still, having a bag of fresh arugula makes me feel like a millionaire.

Watermelon and apple strudel

Watermelon and apple strudel = happiness.

We arrive at Sunshine Camp where hosts Janet and Elizabeth greet us warmly.  Real beds with fresh linens await, to the delight of all.  As English-speakers they are peppered with questions from our somewhat desperate group.  They are so kind, helpful and understanding, genuinely offering an oasis of compassion and comfort on the European Peace Walk.

After a day of relaxation, with some going to the nearby lake and some catching up on much-needed rest, we sit down to an authentic Austrian meal with savory vegetable soup, meat, potato dumplings with sour cream, a crisp and refreshing salad of home-grown tomatoes and cucumbers, watermelon, and the best apple streusel I’ve ever tasted.  Hospitality at its finest.  The best meal yet.

The weather report shows another heat wave starting tomorrow.  Except for our sickest member, everyone decides to walk, but not the complete distance.  As a group we are abandoning the EPW guide in favor of more sensible and enjoyable experiences.

Sadly, most of us, who faithfully walked the 780 kilometer (485 miles) Camino de Santiago and never considered using a bus or taxi (myself included) feel no desire anymore to be faithful to the EPW guide.  With such long distances, day after day with little of interest along the way, I sincerely wonder how many have been faithful.  And if they have, why have they?

Thank you to Gary Keorkunian for sponsoring today’s walk and this post.

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Distance I Didn’t Walk Today: 28 kilometers (17.3 miles)

European Peace Walk – Day 10 Tips

I can’t comment on the walk because I didn’t do it.

Accommodation: Shared rooms with bunk beds and fresh linens and pillows!  Cost is 9 euros for a bed. Dinner: Cost is 9 euros and absolutely worth it. Vegetarian or regular meal available.  Generous, beautifully prepared and authentic. Wi-fi: Yes. Breakfast: coffee, bread, cheese, sausage, yogurt, juice – awesome!

Photos of Day 10 of the European Peace Walk (click to view):




One Comment

  1. Did they have the watermelon blessed?

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