I was expecting vast skies and barren landscapes today and I did get plenty of that. Sunrise on the Meseta in autumn is wonderful.
What I didn’t expect were the villages tucked into small valleys protected from the wind which, although we’re yet to experience it, no doubt can roar across the plain. Sometimes there were even trees and patches of green where the farmers have been irrigating their lucerne crops.
At Hontanas (about half-way through today’s 20k+kwalk) we had our usual second breakfast – tortilla and coffee – and as usual we walked past the first cafe in town to the other less popular options. We were rewarded with the best tortilla yet and a quiet environment in which to enjoy it.
It got hotter, a lot hotter, but there was still time to appreciate the ruins of San Anton – a 14thC convent.
Bread used to be left in the alcoves for pilgrims – interestingly I did see a loaf in a plastic bag hanging in a doorway. I wasn’t inclined to help myself.
After that it was a beautiful walk, in a hot and dry way, to our stop for the night at Castrojeriz. I’ve got a hunch that compared to what the weather could be like in this wild environment a little heat is nothing.
Since Burgos we’ve been stuck on the John Brierley stages, which most pilgrims follow. Tomorrow, we’re going to offset ourselves from that by stopping at the small town of Boadilla del Camino. It will still be a walk of 19ks. We’ve booked into a small albergue, the guidebook says it has only ten beds – could be perfect for us.
Making the reservation tested my App-learned Spanish. I don’t think the Señora understood a single word. Fortunately, the Señora at tonight’s accommodation understood me well enough to phone and rebook. Fingers crossed we haven’t made a double booking.
It’ll be another early start, we both want to get the walking done before the heat of the afternoon.