The one with the amazing oasis cafe, a few PUDS and some unusual sound effects!


📍 Location: Neda to Betanzos

🥾 Miles: 22 miles

⛑️ Health: most of the group is doing well. One has a big toe blister, and nearly everyone suffered from the heat, but a good night’s rest should do the trick.

🌦️ Weather: Bloody hot! 🥵


🍳 7.30 am – We enjoy fresh orange juice (we had to put four oranges into a machine and let it work its magic). The lady made us scrambled eggs and we also had a selection of cold buffet-style food.
🔔 8 am – We meet outside the hotel right by the sea. What a great location to give the walkers briefing for today’s adventure. Caroline runs off to the little chapel next to the hotel and we watch and hear her ringing the bell…. And we are off!
⛰️ Up we go! 1st of many climbs. of the day.
🐐 8.57 am – Oh…. Goat! I was thankful for the distraction. This hill out of Neda is a killer and goes on forever.
🫏 10.02 am – We can see a pilgrim in front of us dawdling in her own little world. We soon realise that she is going to miss the sign. Kelly yells, “Hey, it’s this way!”. The older Canadian lady was very grateful and we chatted for a bit. More hills…. Oh… Donkeys are so cute. (Again, I’m thankful for this distraction!)
☕️ 11.36 am – Pontedume is right on the river and has a lovely scenic location. I’m feeling good but I do need to have a break. A few of us stopped for a cafe con leche at a cafe just by the river. Four little old men are happily playing dominos and it’s looking quite competitive. I love the culture of Spain. I wonder why we don’t do this in the UK. The tourist information centre is closed, and so is the church, so the team go on the hunt for a Camino pilgrim stamp in town. Some find a stamp in cafes and others pop into a local hotel. The Camino passports are filling up nicely. Emma, the practical joker, is super competitive when it comes to stamp collection. She told everyone that she even got one at Lidls a few days ago…. I won’t say if that was true or not! 😂
🥵 12 o’clock – We start the climb out of Pontedueme. I’m dreading this one as I know it just goes on and on. The sun is now beating down and my umbrella has made an appearance. Slowly does it! Eventually, the town is way below us and the trail turns into a beautiful forest with wonderful eucalyptus trees. The trees give us all some protection from the heat which is welcomed by everyone.
By now, I’m in the middle of the pack. Sam is way up front, Julie & Jo are in front of me. The rest of the gang is not far behind.
🕰️ 2 o’clock we arrive at an oasis of a café. This place is a welcome break for all pilgrims. I hear a voice calling my name and it’s Julie & Jo. I snap some photos of the little souvenir truck and the wonderful Camino wall art, and then I hear a loud whistle! The owner welcomes all pilgrims by blowing a whistle to celebrate their arrival! How lovely is that? Spanish music is playing and there’s a warm fuzzy feeling about this place. I order cheesecake, cafe con leche and a round of expresso liquor shots! Jo & Julie indulge. Julie says “I like this… it reminds me of something I’ve drunk before”. She then had a thoughtful look on her face as she searched her memory bank to figure out what the expresso tasted like…. “Benilyn!” She declared. Yes, it did taste a bit like the famous cough medicine! 😂
👋 Kelly & Emma arrive and the process of the whistle happens again. I am going to wait here until the last of the gang arrives so I know that everyone is safe and doing ok. Caroline & Cheryl had stopped to change shoes so they were a bit behind. The host lady hopped out of her chair and grabbed the whistle… they are here!! We settled them in with a round of drinks and more liquor expresso and then I said I’ll
catch them at the hotel. With a spring in my step, I was on my way again.
🤔 5 pm – Blimey, it’s amazing how the brain forgets things. I’d forgotten how many hills are on the trip! More quaint villages, murals, forest trails and some stunning scenery. We are now meeting pilgrims that we recognise and chat as we go. There are numerous groups from the UK. One is a group of men who met each other at Uni over 40 years ago. You can hear the camaraderie as they take the mickey out of each other. Especially the guy called Nick who has never really done any walking apart from taking the dog around the block!
💭 I’ve been listening to “I May Be Wrong” a story about a forest monk, which is our book club read for this month. I appreciate that it’s not for everyone but it’s really given me some things to think about. Um….
🏨 6 pm – made it! What a tough day! I wait in the lobby to welcome each and every one of the crew. Some found today more challenging than others but they all did it! They all walked over 20 miles in the Spanish heat! We had a few tears. This can be quite an emotional trail.
🥘 8.55 pm – dinner time. We ate moo and potatoes! The menu was in Spanish and the waitress spoke no English. The Google Translate for the menu said “roast meat” and we weren’t sure what meat that meant. After some confusion, Julie Swart took charge. She got the waitress’s attention as she started mooing… then did an impression of a chicken! The waitress laughed and “moo’d” back. Fab, four of us had the best steak ever!
🛌 10 pm – We are all beat and need sleep. We have another long day tomorrow. As I turn out the light I decide that next year I will extend the trip by a day and break this day into two walks rather than one long day.
Night night everyone and thanks for taking the time to read the blog.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This