Kaspars’s diary of the adventure completed in spring 2013. Translated by Una.
It is April 25. We wake up at 6 o’clock. We know, that the next town is 20 km away. Owners of the restaurant where we ate dinner told us about this town yesterday. It is quite a problem for us, as we don’t have almost any food with us anymore. So, we start to walk earlier, while the sun is not so strong. We divide the food what is left. That is almost nothing. And we start to walk a little bit after 7 o’clock.
As we didn’t eat breakfast, we have no strength. And we start to feel weak already in the first kilometers. Edgars decides to go alone and fast, so he can “reach the food” faster.
I am walking and thinking about many things. It’s how I like to start the day, in a silence and only with my thoughts. But now one particular thought comes to my mind again and again – we will need to walk for 4 or 5 hours hungry, really?
After two hours of walking we are not in the hills any more. Now we are in the valley. We continue to walk and then we see that there is a steep and rocky hill in front of us. Great…
This is one hell of a hill! It is very steep, and the walk is exhausting! But after this extremely tiring walk we are rewarded! What is on the top of the hill? Of course – food! There is a small cafe on the side of the walking trail! We go inside to have at least a coffee and a croissant or other sweet pastry. But we are more than lucky!
In the corner we see a shelf full with doughnuts, muffins and other sweet stuff. Besides, prices are low – 1 to 1,5 Euros per doughnut and muffin six-pack. Cheap sweets for hungry hiker, that’s good, haha!
I pick a pack of doughnuts and go to order a cup of coffee. Then I understand that I don’t know how it is coffee with milk in Spanish. Somehow, using signs, I ordered it. And now we will know – coffee with milk in Spanish is “Café con leche”. (As I learn Spanish now, it seems so funny that we didn’t know such elementary things back then, ha.) I am so hungry and the sweets with coffee are so tasty, that in the end I end up eating about half kilo of sweets!
Now we have some strength! The next 5 kilometers we are flying! But we have not decided about how many kilometers we will walk today. 20 kilometers to the next town? Too little. But the next town after it is after 40 kilometers. That’s too much!
OK, maybe let’s try to walk 30 kilometers and this time let’s stay in the tents that we have brought with us. We look on the map and see that there might be good places for camping near the river. Also during today’s walk we saw this river few times already.
After one hour of fast walk I start to feel very exhausted and also my stomach hurts. Apparently I have eaten too much muffins and doughnuts. The next half an hour of walking is very hard for me, but I walk anyway. We stop for a 10 minute rest in a very beautiful place in the hills, before the first town, Tricastella. I start to feel better.
As soon as we resume walking, Edgars calls me. He has reached Tricastella and informs us that there, in the town, is a supermarket where you can buy everything! His plan is to rest there for one hour and walk further, to the next town, Sarria.
It is another 20 km away. I tell him that we are not sure yet if we will reach Sarria today. But we understand that if we don’t meet him today, we might meet each other only after one week, in our destination – in Finisterre.
We reach Tricastella and we already know what we will do here. First things first! We will go to the supermarket and buy something to eat. And only then – rest! Each of us buys everything he or she needs and we go outside to eat and have a rest. Fanta and nuts are what I really craved all day long and I get it here.
We feel “charged” again and ready to go. But first – we buy food to take with us.
Huh, we have walked 30 km already! We are so tired and we are ready to sleep right here, where we stand. But no, not yet! We need to go a little bit further, because this doesn’t look like a good place for camping. It’s very hot and because of it walking is even more exhausting. We walk and search for a place where to camp.
After 5 kilometers we understand that we won’t find such a place. We don’t see those small rivers which we saw on the map. And now I am very thirsty. As I told before, in previous articles, I don’t carry water with me, because drinking water fountains are everywhere – like after every few kilometers. But now, when it’s so hot, we haven’t seen any fountain for more than 3 hours.
And… what’s this? I see a vending machine! A vending machine in the middle of the nowhere, next to a tiny bar! Yes! I insert the coins. And seconds later I start to think that the machine is not working. As it sounds, coins don’t get were they should go, but just rattle somewhere. I press a button and… the bottle of Coca Cola falls out with a thud. Success! I drink the whole thing in less than a minute.
We walk and walk again. We understand that we need to reach Sarria today, no matter how exhausted we are and how much our legs hurt!
I see a Taxi advertisement for the first time. After some time we start to see more and more of them. We walk very slowly, taking small steps. During the last kilometers we feel like walking on an autopilot mode – our legs are working on their own, while our minds are drifting elsewhere.
Couple of kilometers before Sarria we see a campsite but it is very expensive. OK, they have electricity and showers, but still, it’s too expensive. Finally we reach the town. While we with Viesturs go to search for an ATM, Una and my mum wait for us near the albergue. This is the first albergue we find and we decide to search no more. We are too exhausted. We return with money and check in.
Only later we get to know that Edgars also is staying in this albergue! Besides, he checked in not long before we came. That’s because, as we will find out later, he got lost and walked few extra kilometers!
Today we have walked so much and have seen so many places! Amazing!
Read all our articles from Camino de Santiag0 2013!
Author: Una Baufala
Una is a traveler and travel blogger from Latvia. Apart from traveling and exploring new places she loves to read books. And she adores cats. Together with Kaspars they have been traveling – volunteering – working abroad since October 2013. WeAreFromLatvia.com is where she shares her travel experiences.