Achievement Unlocked

Day 18

Today was a short distance walk, and I am using the afternoon to rest and catch up.  I just seem tired this afternoon.

I was up and at breakfast by 7 – the hostel/hotel had a pretty decent breakfast offering: fried eggs and some Spanish ham on toast.  With orange juice, tea, and a chocolate croissant it made for a decent start to the day.  And had a spectacular sunrise out the window to accompany.

I walked out of the place by about 8 and soon was joined by someone we’ve seen on and off during the walk.  

In the next town I ran across one of our friends from the Netherlands – she had been sick for a day or two, but reported feeling much better today and I walked with her for a while.  She’s recently graduated from university and is doing the walk before she starts a job.  We both agree that there’s something different, almost magical, about the Camino.  But at the rest stop just outside of Sahagun, she caught up and reported feeling not well again – I’ve offered my contact info and asked her to reach out if I can help at all.  

My friends from Nashville stopped by while I was taking the rest break.  They’re also concerned about our friend from the Netherlands.  They are part of what I call the “fellowship” and are terrificly good people.  They stayed a town before where I did last night, and apparently there was no room there for our other two friends, so they apparently stayed in the same town as I last night – since I didn’t see them, I can only assume they stayed at the other Albergue in the village.  Availability of lodging continues to be tight along the way between two groups of 30 people and the folks that buy travel packages.  So I spent the afternoon booking another 4 nights ahead (so almost a week ahead from now).  I sent my friends the info and hopefully they’ll also get rooms.  One town I chose, tightly booked, is the last town before a steep climb and I really would prefer not to have to do any of that climb at the end of a day… and I believe the others in the group are similarly inclined.

Sahagun brands itself as the geographical midpoint of the route from Roncesvalles to Santiago.  (Those that started in St. Jean, as I did, passed their midpoint yesterday).  The Pilgrim Office in Sahagun offers a certificate attesting to reaching the halfway point.  Needless to say I got one for my efforts.  I’d call it more than a “participation certificate” to get it you walked 400 km, which in and of itself deserves recognition.  The certificate is recognition of all the effort and walking put forth so far.  But I am really looking forward to receiving the Compostella in Santiago.  I’d sure like to walk into town with the friends I’ve met.

Best of all: I’m halfway to the end.

Weather today was again good and dry with a passing sprinkle.  About 26-27 expected by the end of afternoon.  But much cooler tomorrow (which makes me happy as it’s a much longer walk).  The short walk again was through grain-farming countryside.

I also put my Hoka shoes back on and the patch held pretty well.  I like both the Hokas and the Salomons, but the Hokas are far more cushiony on the gravel.  I’ll wear them again tomorrow and see how the patch holds up.  Silicon caulk: what a wonderful thing.

The private room at the hostel that I’m in for the night is quite nice – nicer than last night.  Dinner is at 7 as another communal dinner.  Again, the Pilgrim Menus are good bargains even if they are not fine dining (ok, I’ll still thinking of that dinner the other night at the monastery….).  Tomorrow night the dinner offering is vegetarian and after the past 2 weeks, I’m looking forward to it.

Tomorrow will be about 30 km, so I hope to be out before 8. Hoping for interesting scenery and meeting more people.

I’ve also uploaded photos from the last few days.  Not as many, but the scenery hasn’t really changed so not much to add from that perspective.  A reminder that the photos are at: