Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for León, Castilla y León, Spain

Apr 19, 2018 - Mansilla de las Mulas to León

Day 18 - El Camino Maximum elevation = 902 m, minimum & starting elevation = 791 m. 10 - 22 degrees. Mostly sunny. Another lovely morning. We headed out through the crumbling medieval walls of Mansilla de las Mulas. A short day today walking into a large city so the path was often close to a busy road and for a very short section, through Villarmoros, on the roads shoulder. A coffee in Puente Villarente at 7km and then a hard slog all the way to the Cathedral in the centre of Leon, 12km later. The only amusement: A guessing game of how...

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Sep 18, 2016 - Finisterre - lands end

When I first thought of walking the Camino, it was really Finisterre that called to me. I thought that, somehow, if I walked to the End of the world, reached out into the abyss, I might somehow feel closer to the one I lost. Turns out..... It is true. I scrambled down the granite boulders, found a crevice, and slipped in the program from Clinton's service I brought all this way. I had folded it into an arrow, the yellow and blue of the program mirroring the Camino colors, and pointed it out to sea. When Clinton & I used to walk together,...

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Sep 18, 2016 - Cathedral Santiago

The last 3 miles to the Cathedral we walked as a group. When you enter the square, you are among hundreds of pilgrims - all hugging, most crying .... And you become one of them. We attended mass, hugged the repository of the bones of St James, and witnessed the huge incensor , the " butofeimeiro" , swing in wider and wider arcs over our heads to symbolize our prayers " flying up to heaven" . The mass was in Spanish, con celebrated by about 8 priests and deacons from around the world, but at the beginning of mass, names are read for those...

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Sep 16, 2016 - To Mount of Joy

For the last 6 of 15 miles up to the Mount of Joy, I contemplated and prayed for all my grandchildren and godchildren- some revelations but I will save for later.... To get up that last mount, I listened to : " good to be alive", (made me laugh Clinton D!) Danny Boy, Life is Like a mountain Railroad, And at the top - Renee Fleming " Rusalka" - o Silver Moon I finished first. Now 3 miles to the cathedral & mass

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Sep 15, 2016 - To salceda

The days begin to merge, a routine emerges: hobble from bed to medicine bag, do some quick stretches, pack for the day, bandage feet, set luggage outside for next transfer, rush to breakfast & hope you consume enough coffee quickly to decipher the local " delicacies" arrayed before time to load bus to be taken back to the point on the Camino where you left off yesterday.... Concern yourself greatly with: Where are the checkpoints, have I consumed enough water & protein to make it to next checkpoint, have I consumed too much water & coffee...

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Sep 13, 2016 - To Palas de Rei

14.5 miles - in the rain. More later Just finished another 13 miles ( Wednesday ) & will write up in next entry... Days blending together.... Learning to keep my thoughts on putting one foot in front of the other as you slosh thru rain & mud, moving aside for faster paced pilgrims, but still noticing the beauty of path side trees covered with moss, ferns reaching for the rain, ancient churches weighted with prayers. Things I am grateful for with every step: my rain pants & goretex hikers, my rain coat from Bob & Ems, my silk liner socks...

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Sep 12, 2016 - Sarria to Portomarin

Beautiful day on the Camino, but maybe the last good weather for awhile. 13.5 miles so far today and rain a certainty for tomorrow they tell us. The " typical" cafe is a misnomer- some look like hippy communes, some have gypsies outside pretending to be deaf & asking for money so their partner can steal from you, some are charming little village places with balconies overflowing with flowers, some are modern cafes & pubs, some are just tables of fruit & water set up by kind people for pilgrims. " sufficient unto the day is the evil...

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Sep 11, 2016 - Triacastela to sarria

September 11 - St James is represented on the Camino both as the disciple and pilgrim of Christ's way, and as the ferocious " moor slayer" as his " bones" were discovered here in Galithia just in time to rally the locals against invading Moors. Legend has it that he slayed thousands in battle... Which was he? I think this depends on what you are looking for.... Another long but good day on the Camino with perfect weather... Calves aching & toe hurting, but enjoyed a massage and now sitting on a stone bench looking over a beautiful...

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Sep 10, 2016 - Finally walking the Camino- o'cebreiro to triacastela

Made it!! 14.6 miles today total and very grateful to have first day done! Weather perfect... Was not the first to finish but far from the last ( not counting a couple who called it quits for the day 2/3 down) ... Kept pace and enjoyed great conversations with the Dr & his wife... Incredibly beautiful lodgings again tonite with gourmet dinner, local wine and some sort of local after dinner drink that I am glad did not have to drive home after... Tired... But strangely at peace....

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Sep 9, 2016 - The Parador & Leon Cathedral

This entry was for Thursday , but did not post: The Parador has been a monastery, a hospital, a prison and now an incredible hotel. Upon entering the Cloister walk, you feel as though the guardian statutes are halting both time and all earthly concerns, as they offer you a a more lasting tranquility. Met all in my group- I'm not the oldest, but it remains to be seen as to whether I am the least in shape for the walk. Wonderfully diverse, kind group of interesting people. I am glad to be here. I have quite a few photos of Csthedral interior...

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Sep 9, 2016 - Cruz de Ferro, molinaseca and Palacio de Caneda

Making this entry from my own private jacuzzi, feeling a little guilty for touring from a luxury van today as we passed pilgrims treading many dusty miles... On the other hand.... Grateful the Lord has seen fit not to have me born a hundred years ago when widows had the " holy option" of sealing themselves in a chamber from which they emerged only after death... Despite no actual trekking today, Very emotional indeed to leave a token at the foot of the pilgrims cross at highest point in the Camino. I chose driftwood for clinton instead of...

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Sep 7, 2016 - First day in Spain

After considerable last minute apprehension about the logistics of this journey, everything went so smoothly it ifeels almost as though I am supposed to be here... Really. Emily got me to the airport in record time, Only 2 people in line ahead of me at TSA check, my seat mate in the plane over was a Georgia tech grad ( 2005) now head of R&D for some large tech company (Bob - he remembered The SAE " difficulty" on campus), got myself to the proper train ( with only 3 x to information desk), settled into lovely accommodations & took a walk....

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