Day 27: Villafranca de Bierzo to Las Herrerias aka Power's Out
All but two pilgrims had left by the time we had gone to the kitchen for our breakfast. The express coffee maker was not up to our standards of coffee that we had gotten used each morning at the various cafes we sat in. We were saddened by the sight of rain pouring outside, knowing that it would make for a long day. Starting off on the Camino, we got a good idea of how pretty Villafranca de Bierzo would be sans rain and fog. At the point of exiting the city, we had a choice of either passing under the seemingly narrow and treacherous tunnel or taking the long way around. We opted for the former. This was a good risk to take, as it resulted in us saving two miles of walking in the rain. I wouldn’t usually say this, but I was glad to walk parallel to the road today because of how much it was pouring. Luckily it wasn’t just road, but also nature (mountains, rivers, streams) keeping us company… And even better, no rocks.
In the second town we passed of Trabadelo, we took refuge and grabbed some coffee. We got the courage to carry on in the rain a half hour later, until Vega de Valcare, where it was really pouring and we felt we had no choice but to stop at a restaurant called Meson Las Rocas. For €15 we ate the worse meal on the Camino so far. It was there, that I notice my feet were submerged within puddles in my shoes. Nothing that their fireplace could quell. It took a while before summoning the courage yet again and go into the rain. This time to make it to Las Herrerias. On the way there, we noticed signs to rent horses for tomorrow’s climb up the mountain. We also noticed a lot of horses, more than usual at least.
Nearby our final destination, we came across a restaurant with a GF menu. I thought this would make up for the last meal we forced ourselves to eat. It didn’t. Yes, they had my favorite GF bread, but they wouldn’t toast it. Yes, they had GF pasta but the sauce was tasteless. Oh, well. We are staying Casa Polin, a really nice hostel. For €36 we got a wonderful and clean room and for €6 more, we got to wash and dry our clothes. Too bad there was a power outage in the entire pueblo for over two hours, making us all freak out, thinking we would freeze to death or worse yet, not have any access to our social networks. The small group of old men sitting next me said this was very normal, and went about their card game, unchanged. However, we literally all cheered when the electricity came back on.
I’m happy to catch up on e-mails and blogging tonight and have a warm bed to sleep in. Not as happy for tomorrow’s ascent. Praying that the Camino gods spare us and give us less rain or hopefully no rain at all.