Thursday, May 5, 2011
First day of hiking - Camino de Santiago
This is going to be extremely difficult to pick just one picture for each day. There were so many memorable and beautiful things. My mom and my sister on the first day - see how happy and chipper they were? My mom's pack is supposedly "balanced" better with the front bags so it's not as hard on your back but we ended up calling them her man-boobs the entire trip. As in "Mom, do you have the map? Check in your boobs".
This morning we caught a bus for Sarria and at the bus station met a woman named Kris from Ottowa. She was in the middle of doing the Camino - she had started much further back than us - but her knees hurt so she took a break to come see Lugo and was headed to Sarria to start hiking again. You only get your certificate if you hike the last 100 km straight on foot so Sarria, being about 112 km from Santiago, is a very popular starting place. We hiked for most of the day and did pretty good. THis part of Galicia is beautiful, very green and it reminds me quite a bit of Oregon. We met one other American on the trail - she was a 25 year old from Texas who was having a "quarter-life" crisis : ) and I want to call her Julie although I don't thing that's her name. It should be though, she seemed like a Julie. We also saw Kris from Canada a few times this day as we hiked. You kind of end up leap-frogging on the trail with people. Every few kilometers there is a cafe bar where you can take a break, fill your water bottles, have some food and a coffee (cafe con leche for me) or a beer (cervesa).
Most of this day was spent hiking through farmland. Wonderfully old farm land with stone houses and stone walls and little old ladies in their skirts out working an entire field with a hand hoe. We stopped for the night in our first albergie (10 Euros for the night) and had a lovely dinner of fish and gazpacho.