CAMINO FRANCES – DAY 17

LEON – SAN MARTIN DEL CAMINO

13 APRIL

26.0km

After last night’s celebrations it was now very quiet in the streets of León. Once again we had to concentrate on the yellow Camino arrows to find our way out of the city – luckily we were a couple of pilgrims together and were able to leave León behind without too much trouble. It’s a beautiful city and we would love to come back one day and stay longer.

Leon (46)

Early morning in the streets of León

The Parador Hotel which feature in the movie The Way. We saw a few pilgrims leaving the hotel – they must have enjoyed a good night’s sleep

Today we took the alternative route, which is not the most scenic one, but we wanted to overnight in San Martin del Camino and therefore had to take this road.

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We saw these ‘hobbit houses’ outside León – Raul (our Spanish pilgrim friend) said they might be use to store wine, called ‘bodegas’ … or something else 😃 … anyway, it was cute!

I must admit that I do not really remember the detail of this road. Today we were 8 pilgrims in the group that walked together. Monica (Sweden), Raul, his two kids, Javier and Gloria (all from Spain) joined us on this stage. So, instead of looking around and taking photos, we rather spent the time chatting to each other. We had some serious conversations about how each of us approach life. It was of great value to hear how everyone handles obstacles that crosses their paths and it just reminded me how much we can learn from each other.

Lesson learnedMake time to listen to people – this may add value to your life

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Many stork nests on top of the bell tower

It was another hot day and we tried not to waste too much time by stopping somewhere on the road for too long, but rather pushed on to get to San Martin del Camino before the heat of the day. It was also a quiet day on the roads as today was a public holiday before Easter weekend commence. Although we enjoyed the festivities in León yesterday, we now enjoyed the calmness on the road and were looking forward to more days like these.

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Less than 300km to Santiago

Despite San Martin del Camino being a rather small town, it has three albergues, a grocery shop, bakery and a pharmacy (of course). The main road basically going through the middle of town and it was very easy for us to find our preferred albergue, La Casa Verde. It was also painted in a bright green colour!

Our ‘hospitalerio’ (hostess of the albergue) was very friendly and she allocated one big room to all of us – we are after all a Camino family. The good news was that there were no bunk beds, just single beds in a row. Instead of an albergue, it almost felt like a luxurious hotel! We were very happy when the hospitalerio offered to prepare dinner for us. We bought fruit from the small grocery shop around the corner and made a big bowl of fruit salad for dessert.

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Gloria and Javier joined me to prepare the fruit salad

For the remainder of the afternoon, we enjoyed the lovely back garden of the albergue. After finishing our laundry, we opened a bottle of wine (or two) and just enjoyed each other’s company.

The dinner prepared by our ‘hospitalerio’ was delicious and we had a good time around the table. We chatted until late that evening while drinking (more) wine. A wonderful way of ending our day on the Camino.

Pre-snacks on the table … jamon, cheese and bread. Main meal: chicken, salad and (more) bread

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Our Camino family: Javier, Gloria, Raul, his 2 children (Diego & Gabriella) and Monica

10 thoughts on “CAMINO FRANCES – DAY 17

      1. I did not like to ask as so many of these so-called “lifelong friendships” on the road fizzle out after a week. I am so glad you all still have comms with each other as they look like lovely people.

        Contrary to public belief and media scaremongering there are still a Hell of a lot more nice people in the world than nasty ones.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Dis waar Aletta. Ons het ‘n wonderlike paar dae saam met die Spanjaarde en die Sweedse meisie gestap. En daardie aand se kos was heerlik … dalk ook omdat daar so ‘n gemoedelike samesyn tussen ons almal was.

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    1. That’s something that will stay with me for as long as I live – the wonderful friendships and camaraderie that we formed with strangers (that later became special friends). My grandma always told us that the dear Lord gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason … we must listen more than what we talk. A very valuable lesson I learned when I was a little girl 😀.

      Liked by 1 person

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