I have got behind with my blogs since I have been unable to post the last one due to internet connections that were extremely slow. Now I am trying to remember events of 2 days ago.
Each day is a routine of awake by 6:00 am, dress and pack all your possessions into a backpack as others in the dormitory are doing the same. Throw water on your face and brush teeth. All in the near dark in about 30 mins. The only sounds are the rustle of plastic bags, occasional banging of dropped items onto a wooden floor and a few whispers between people traveling together.
Then out into the fresh morning air with hope of finding a coffee shop open soon but sometimes it may be 2 hours before that is the case.
For some reason I did not take many photos today but here is a statue I found along the way of a pilgrim, complete with staff and gourd for carrying water on his way to the shrine of St James in Santiago.
The cemeteries in this area are usually above ground due to a high water table making in ground burials impractical.
Our path takes us through small villages, along narrow country roads where we see mostly older people. In many of the small farming villages the younger people have moved to the bigger towns and cities for jobs and small traditional farms are being abandoned as the older generation are no longer able to continue.
We are in Galicia located near the Atlantic coast of Spain where the proximity to to the ocean leads to a cooler climate with more rain than in the central and southern parts of Spain. So far we have been fortunate with perfect hiking weather. Cool mornings and hot sun in the afternoon.
As we approach Padron we find 2 men wading in the river fishing for what look like river trout.
Finally we arrive and after settling into the albergue we find a shady table to enjoy a late lunch. Helen chooses a salad while I opt for the famous Padron peppers. A small sweet pepper fried in olive oil and with course salt. Occasionally one will be spicy but you never know which one so it also adds to anticipation to eating them!
Look at that fresh crusty bread to go with the peppers!
There are many legends around the return of the body of St James after his execution in Jerusalem, including one that says that the boat carrying his remains arrived in Padron on a boat tied up at this point in the bank of the river at this location. This is a replica of the post the boat tied up to with the original one in the church.
The river is now shallow with weeds but apparently it used to be deeper and was an active port along this coast of Spain.
Another feature of our daily routine is washing clothes and hanging them out to dry. The days are long here with sunset after 10:00 pm so getting them dry on sunny days is usually not a problem.
Finally for today. It is late in the day and the sun has finally dropped behind the church.
In the front of the picture is a fountain said to produce holy water. Washing your feet in it will lead too healing. Above, in front of the church is a balcony where legend says that James would preach to the local people.
That ends today. I hope to have more luck posting these.