Saturday, March 26, 2016

Camino Day 4: Melide to Bebedeiro

Today's Schedule:
8:40am Out the door and ready to go
8:45am Breakfast at the café next door
9:13am Now we're ready to go
9:40am Erika and Justin pick up a hitchhiker
9:43am The rain begins
10:30am Fruit stand break
12:35pm Lunch break
1:30pm Team JEJ joins us for lunch
4:30pm We check into our albergue
5:42pm Team JEJ arrives for the night
8:00pm Dinner

Distance covered: 18.4km/11.43mi
Mia's pedometer: 35,242 steps

Breakfast today was an easy stop. As you step out of the albergue, there is a cafe directly to our left, the same one that José and I visited last night. Once again, it was orange juice, hot beverage, and toast except here we only had to pay 3,50€ each which is more reasonable in my opinion. It was still dry as we headed out of town and I wanted to get some distance in before the rain caught up with us. As we wandered our way out of town, I came across a food truck that was just gorgeous. It was a Citroën H or similar and it was done in a beautiful color palette. I wonder if I could import one of those back home. It would make a swell campervan. We were once again in our groups of three and three, JKM and JEJ. We are in A Coruña territory now. We happened upon a roadside stand selling fruit and cakes so I stopped for Mia. JEJ caught up with us along with an older gentleman from the Basque country. He has run into them a couple times before and even gave Justin some kind of patch the last time they met up. It's funny what happens out here considering the language barrier. The girls each picked out a pear to eat and got another stamp in their credential. 

We had some lovely hills again today. When we found a place to stop for lunch, I was sweating to death inside my hoodie and rain jacket. We had just come down a hill and crossed a valley when I spied the restaurant on the top of the other side. We ran across the highway and up across the lawn where we parked ourselves at a table outside on the veranda under an umbrella. Here we had a view of the whole valley and we could see all the pilgrims descending and then passing on the trail right below us. This way I could make sure that JEJ didn't pass us somehow. I did see the Canadians as they passed on their way.
We all ordered the menu special which was a drink, pork chops, French fries, egg over easy, and dessert for 9€. The sopa fideo was served in a large bowl and José served us individually. It was delicious but then again, everything is when you're hungry. We stayed and waited for JEJ to catch up with us. I pulled out Mia's monocular and we watched the tiny pilgrims across the valley and we could pick them out as they crested the top. We waited long enough to help them order and get their food before we headed out. They also ordered the same meal with the exception of Mom who got a whole tortilla de patata (8€). After this Camino, she'll probably never want to see one again!

The rest of the afternoon went by with no events. It was very windy with an almost constant rain so we were mostly focused on getting to our hostel for the night. I had picked out one that was about 19km even though Mom doesn't want to walk that much. We are dependent on how often the albergues come up. The one I picked on the list had a little note next to it (FR .7KM). We learned that this meant that we actually had to detour from the route and walk 700 meters to this albergue. We had been walking with no idea exactly how far we had gone or where we were. All of the markers have "complementario" written on it so we have no idea if there is another route that we missed somehow. We finally found the road leading to the left and a simple wooden sign with the name of the albergue on it. The albergue was sitting right beside the highway so it was easy to find once we walked down the side road. I had called ahead to make sure there were six beds available for us as it was several kilometers down the Camino before we might run into another one. 
The innkeeper assigned us a room and told us we could pay and sign in when everyone else showed up. They like to check our passports and copy our info with everyone present.We were dripping water so the goal was to get everyone out of their wet clothes and try to get everyone dry. Mom showed up with Erika and Justin just over an hour later so we got checked in. There is a washer and dryer here but there is already a line of dirty laundry bags so we added ours to the line. We went downstairs to the "cafeteria" for dinner. There was already a group of young adults in there talking and laughing but we managed to get enough chairs around a table for our group. There is a menu here but it is all prepackaged food that the owner heats up and serves. So that means we dined on pizza and pasta tonight. It wasn't actually that bad. The kids picked out cookies for their dessert. A girl poked her head into the room and told us that the washing machine had stopped so she took everything out of the washer and set it on top of the dryer. The kicker was when she told us all that she had put her clothes in the washer, even then we were all waiting in line with our own dirty clothes!! I was speechless and due to the hour, we just gathered up our clothes and decided to wear the same clothes tomorrow. I tried to take a shower tonight and the light in the upstairs bathroom flickered but it wouldn't stay on. I wasn't keen on bathing in the dark in a community bathroom.
Tonight's room is actually two rooms with a total of four bunkbeds. We kept turning on the heaters so our clothes would dry out and somehow the radiators kept going off? We have been putting plastic bags over the kids socks before we put them in their shoes. The bags slip around in their shoes but it is better than nothing. Erika's Keens do not dry out very fast and Mia and Justin are just wearing cheap tennis shoes. I wouldn't change my footwear personally. We survived our first day of rain and that is all the forecast holds for the end of our journey so we have to make the best of it.

Breakfast at A Fabrica Do Camiño 21,00€
Fruit cake stand 3€
Lunch  53€
Albergue Camino Das Ocas 60€
Dinner 43,90€ plus dessert cookies 3 €
Drinks 2,80€
Total Daily Expenses: 142,80€


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