May 13, 2007

5/13/07 Boadilla del Camino

"There was comfort in meeting another person who had seen the same views, had shivered on the same nights, and has felt the same pain. Relationships came easy."
Adrienne Hall
A JOURNEY NORTH

Another early start. Still quite cool. Outside of town was a long climb while the sun was still trying to peak over the hills.


Everyone heading UP

But once we reached the top, we walked in another world. The high plain was covered with an ocean of green with the winds sending ripples across the grasses. Amazing.


An amazing view on the way down



Wild flowers along the Camino

I took a short break at the Ermita San Nicholas which is now a refugio run by the Italians. One German pilgrim told me it was an amazing experience staying there. The hospitaleros prepared the dinner, but before the meal, there was a ceremonial washing of the pilgrim's feet as a form of welcoming guests.


The alter inside the Ermita San Nicholas

But as I continued walking a strong cold wind began to blow and dark clouds began moving in our direction. Another American, Cinnamon, walked with me as we set a brisk pace in the faint hope of beating the rain.


Dark storm clouds moving in

We lost. [smile] The rain came with bitter cold winds. Not to hard, but with the wind it was plenty. For me, I just kept going, going, going. Boadilla came into view a lot sooner than I expected.

I had stayed here before at a private albergue and it was so nice, I wanted to see it again. It has a nice garden, a cafe and restaurant, and the staff seem to do anything they can to make your stay a pleasant one. All for only 5€ ($6.50). When I was here last, we helped unload the perigrino statues that still stand in the garden.


Pilgrim statues inside the albergue

More problems finding beds. This albergue filled up fast, but the city refugio is just down the street. When it also filled to capacity, the owners here tried to squeeze in a few more. I hope everyone at least has a roof over their head tonight because I think it will be a cold one.

The storm moved on soon after we settled in, but the cold bitter wind continued all evening. Not sure what tomorrow will bring.