We were up again at 5 this morning and walked through Pontevedra in the darkness. We left our packs at the front desk for pickup in preparation for our big hill climb.
It’s really neat walking through the cities so early. It’s very peaceful with the odd leftover drunk from the night before.
We followed a path leading out of the city to the junction of the main trail and the Spiritual Variant trail. We turned left and towards the Variant. We went through a couple smaller towns, past a monastery and stopped for tea and toast. Karis spied oranges growing in a roadside tree and with the help of a talker pilgrim, we got two. They smelled great but were definitely past their prime. They went into the next garbage.
We followed the trail down by the ocean and came upon a massive amount of tents! We thought at first that it was a tent city for homeless people and quickly realized that it was the leftovers from a music festival the night before. We passed many intoxicated people with makeup smeared across their faces. Some passed out, some still dancing and singing on the shores. One man paused his singing long enough to yell out, “Buen Camino!” to us.
The elevation began to change and the cobblestone roads curved and twisted upwards. Some sections were excessively steep. We rested often. Drank our water often. The homes along these roads are adorable and we often notice eyes peering from windows watching us.
I downloaded the soundtrack from, “the sound of music” last night. Passing by monasteries and being up in the hills – it seemed fitting. At one particularly good part of, “16 going on 17” that I was singing to Karis, I felt the music and decided to dance. Right as two MAMIL’s (middle aged me in Lycra) came around the corner on their bikes. I kept the moves going and gave them a sing-songy, “HOLA!!” as they giggles at my less than polished moves
At one point we reached an absolutely spectacular lookout. You could see cities and ocean and mountains all below. We took some pictures and I put Julie Andrews away and brought out the Beatles. We settled into our walking paces with Karis ahead, me in the middle and Mom behind. We stopped and met up for a nectarine and continued on.
Now we completely expected that the mountain we climbed today was going to be horrendous. Don’t get me wrong, it was hard but absolutely nothing like what we were expecting from the charts and drawings and warnings we viewed. There were again no tantrums.
We walked into Armenteira right at a monastery with a bar close by. Karis had been there about 15 minutes prior and was sitting and having a cold one of her own. (An orange juice!) mom and I each ordered a beer and were thrilled to find out that the bar was actually the drop off points for our packs. Not so thrilled however when we discovered that only one made it. 😡
After Mom made many phone calls sorting it out they were finally delivered. They weren’t impressed but it was their own mistake. We had prepaid for tomorrow but their pick up times now don’t work so that’s a loss of $15euro. Oh well, we’ve booked with another company that is being much more accommodating. Fingers crossed 🤞🏻 that they make it without issue.
We had pre-packed spaghetti and sauce to make in our albergue tonight. Guess what? No stove. 🤦♀️ pots and pans – yes! Stove – no. Bizarre! We became inventive. We broke our pasta to fit nicely in the pot and poured boiling water on it 4 or 5 times. It worked and we added the sauce that we warmed in the microwave. Win win!
Now we are settling down in a noisy room full of talking people and creaky beds. I think it’s going to be a long night. Up at 5 again with an exciting goal at the end of our 25km – a hotel with a pool 🏊♀️ I’m gonna be layin’ by that!