Posts in vegan
Day 31: Portomarin to Palas de Rey aka It was all a Fog

Woke up with achy muscles and a sore throat... I guess the patio wasn´t as warm as I had perceived it to be last night.  I´m surprised I have held out without getting sick for this long, so I can´t really complain.  It´s really only a few more days until we reach Santiago.  We again declined the 8 euro a person buffet at this new hotel, and opted for just coffee.  It was foggy beyond belief outside, and you couldn´t see more than 100 ft in front of you. This made what seemed to be the hundreds of new pilgrims following us look like zombies protruding from out of the fog.  The fog also gave the lost city of the river an even more eerie vibe.  

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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.

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Day 26: Ponferrada to Villafranca de Bierzo aka "A farmer doesn't eat what he doesn't know"

I had some coffee, OJ and the rest of the gluten-free bread I was given for free yesterday. It was surprisingly not that cold outside and the weather report said no rain, but the gray colored clouds seemed to think otherwise. I don’t trust meteorologists.

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Day 19: Sahugun to Leon aka “Sin dolor, no hay Camino”

At 6:30 AM we were awoken by the sound of loud church bells. I suppose it was time to rise for the The Last Breakfast... Ha! After packing up our belongings, we headed to the comedor, where we found Bridgette. She told us how the head nun yelled at her this morning for apparently leaving her bathroom light on all night, and thus wasting energy. “I don’t know how she knew I had left it on? I need it for when I use the restroom at night and can’t see.” We exchanged our own nun-run ins. I informed the nun I was allergic to gluten yesterday, so I had a banana and yogurt awaiting my arrival, while the others had plastic wrapped pastries. We paid €3 each for this feast, since we’re all told that nothing else would be open at this time (7:15 AM). Have I mentioned that sunrise isn’t until 8:30 AM here? So it's pretty dark when we begin walking.

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Day 10: Granon to Belorado aka "we don't eat backpacks here!"

For some reason, I was really tired today. Luckily for us, my knee has gotten better and so has my mom’s ankle. We woke up to clean clothes and ate a decent breakfast. We also got to talk to the South Korean a little bit more, and he even offered and gave us a ride to the city center. Before then, I got to play with Anna’s (the owner) puppies who are four months old and adorable. Anna also gave us a behind the scenes tour of the church attached to the arbergue that is seldom used because it’s farther away from town.

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Day Seven: Los Arcos to Logroño aka Fat Camp

We woke up in our regrettable hotel, where the wi-fi finally began to work late at night, causing us both technological insomnia. We had breakfast at a local restaurant which wasn’t great, and truly once again probably should’ve just stayed in a local albergue, as it would’ve been cheaper, and the sleep would’ve been just the same. My knee is still killing me, unfortunately… as is my mom’s ankle. So, we are taking things really slow. 

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Day Five: Puenta La Reina to Estella aka No mas albergues, por favor

No sleep last night. I mean, maybe 2 hours? Our room smelled of farts and BO. If that didn’t keep you up, it was the immensely loud snoring that ear plugs couldn’t cover. If you ever do the Camino, BRING EAR PLUGS. So two hours of sleep later, and prior to having to walk 15 miles to Estella, our ‘breakfast’ at the albergue was just as good as the sleep. A croissant, orange juice and coffee. I explained that I’m celiac (soy celiaca), and was offered an apple instead of a croissant...errrr. Being gluten free on the Camino is much easier than being vegan, but sometimes it sucks just as much. Especially when it’s too early for any markets to be open.

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Day Three: Zubiri to Pamplona aka Parque de la Taconera

Just about all of us had a late start today, possibly because some of us got into private hostels and we’re finally able to have sound sleep, who knows. Nonetheless, we started are day off with a cappuccino and breakfast pinxtos. We spoke to the gentleman working, who said he is trying to perfect his English so he can move to England, since there is no money to make in Spain. T'was bien. Ended up passing Klaus and Thomas, due to their hungoveredness (it’s a word). The trail was beautiful, without too many steep portions. I should mention that people, not just Peregrínos are super nice on the trail. It's like holiday season, all of the time. We’ve had waiters offer their place and a couple of randomers (another word) offer us assistance when we’ve stopped alongside the road. It’s refreshing. 

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Day One: Saint Jean to Roncesvalles aka Ignorance is Bliss

I heard a woman at the end of the day in our bunk bed filled room, say “ignorance is bliss… Isn’t that why we are all doing this?” Today we had intentions of only walking 10k to Orisson, however the universe had other plans for us. We ate a decent breakfast at our hotel, as we started on the Camino. Again, such a shame that St. Jean was foggy/rainy. Climbing the Pyrenees was beautiful and strenuous. I noticed there wasn’t much talking amongst pilgrims on the 4,000 Ft elevation gain. Arriving at Orisson (10k in) was a feat in itself. Being wet and cold, we were able to find some temporary refuge in this Refugio, specifically the veggie soup (€4). We were actually supposed to stay the night there, but lo and behold, I didn't confirm the booking and they were FULL. Ugh. But it all worked out for the best. There we met our new German friend Klaus and a New Hampshire-an (?) Psychologist named Thomas. 

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