Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Vega de Valcarce

Camino Duro
On my three passes over Cebreiro I have always walked El Camino Duro (The hard way). I walked this way in 2002 on a delightful sunny day, and given the choice and with no rain, I could not walk through the river valley on the road. The views over the mountains are spectacular. (Below)

The walk through the chestnut woods is a tranquil moment along the way. I love walking this day. In 2007 I told Roland, and M&M, to watch out for the left-hand turn, they missed it and continued on (which is as an alternative). I went left and they were suprised to find me waiting for them at the Trabadelos turn-off (Luiza, the slow peregrino).

After the Chestnut woods the way goes steeply down to Trabadelos and then along the road to Vega de Valcarce where I stayed at Albergue do Brasil with the great Hospitalero, Cristina. It was a special feeling to have Cristina greet me as I came through the door, "Oi Luiza, como vai" and I easily slipped into Portuguese in response. Cristina was the Hospitalero on my pass through here in 2007, yes, I had a reservation, which would have helped her to remember my name.

Cristina cooked the meal for ten pilgrims (six Brazilians, two Americans, and two Germans). She made the best salad I have had in Spain with a delicous ginger dressing followed up with Beans and Rice, then dessert, all washed down with wine and water. To stay at this Brazilian Albergue is a treat for pilgrims and it should not be missed.

I have so many good memories of this way. In 2002 with Sheila, and then with Roland and Wolf in 2007, where we met Sabine on the way from Trabadelos. Betty was there already when we arrived as was Hilde, both special women that I met in 2007.

This year Ralph (Ger) shared his bottle of red that he had carried from Trabadelos, it was good, all the better because a pilgrim had carried it in his backpack to be shared.

The big day is next .....

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