Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Camino Primitivo Alternate Route (March 31, 2020) Day 5 - Pola de Allende to La Mesa

Overall a similar day to Day 4 in terms of weather...started walking at 5:15 am...beautiful out however by 7:00 it started to drizzle. No matter the birds were chirping and I saw a few squirrels running around...but no wild animals...skunks, coyotes, deer, racoons, sheep or cows. I felt quite safe,

Today I walked 25.6 kms...and to date have covered 124.3 kms and am once again camped out in the wild I am 7.4 kms past La Mesa my intended destination for the night.

We live on a busy bus route and it was really strange to notice that most buses were entirely empty or had one or two passengers only. This really brought home the impact of what everyone is dealing with...work at home or even worse not working at all due to temporary job loss.

I am really fortunate to be walking my Camino in these challenging times!

Two very interesting encounters took place today one communicating with a fellow involving appropriate social distancing and another one from afar with no verbal communication whatsoever. The latter one was a real surprise!

I have often met an interesting guy who runs regularly in the area...how do I describe him...likely in his early 60s with long long hair in braids... Clearly he has been a runner for many years and is very friendly often joking that he can't run the hills as he used to. Today as he was passing by he stopped, and at a fair distance well in excess of 2 meters...he asked if I had heard of the marathon runner in France who completed his marathon on his balcony?

I told him that this story had been my inspiration and went on to describe how I was walking the Camino Primitivo (310 kms) over a 13 day period. He laughed as did I when I said "why not?". Hope to see him again in the days ahead.

The second encounter was a non verbal one...the fellow with his dog and the orange ball mentioned in my post yesterday. I had previously indicated that it was a toss up as to who looked sillier...me walking as I do or him carrying his orange ball. Well today he clearly had decided that he was sillier than me...NO ORANGE BALL! He looked at me sheepishly and we both knew that I had won the tug of war on the silly question! Made my day!

I have been remiss so far in that I have not shared pictures on how scenic the Camino Primitivo has been. Yesterday and today I saw some really spectacular scenery on the Hospitales Route (NOTE for anyone who has walked the Camino Primitivo I am well aware that there are glaring inconsistencies with my story regarding the Hospitales route. It's ok there are a few exaggerations in my recounting of events) which I would like to share with you...please note a fellow pilgrim took a picture of me below.

Pretty sure that's me!
Hospitales Route
Hospitales Route

Today my favourite two pilgrims showed up however they clearly had decided that they were pooped walking and needed an alternative form of transportation...I almost jumped in there with them! 

My two favourite pilgrims...one of them did not appear to be too happy!

Now this red wagon brought back memories of a walk Dawn and I did along the Thames River in England with some good friends. One of them, Dennis (pictured) whined almost continuously as we walked an average of 10 kms a day, on flat terrain with small day packs. I offered to get him a Red Wagon then!

Now take a good look at what is one my all time favourite pictures...it perfectly captures Dennis at his finest...keep in mind this gentlemen has two university degrees, commanded at the highest levels the Navy in the Province of Manitoba and was Chief Executive Officer of a large construction firm for  many years...looks sure can be deceiving...however I digress from my Camino Primitivo blog...

Dennis...one of my favourite all time pictures!!!
Well tomorrow off to Grandas de Salime...a really short day however with very significant altitude gains/losses. Hopefully no overnight blisters...you never know I may breeze through Grandas de Salime and sleep on a mountainside somewhere!


  1. I feel like you almost want to sleep on park benches...

    1. Only choice I have Jeanne...either that or sleep in the woods. Papa

    2. Also - I had no idea how large the backyard is...is there some kind of door to Narnia in the shed? So proud of you for out-sillying the guy with the orange ball!

  2. On our first Primitivo we stopped at the hotel just after the dam and enjoyed ice creams on the patio. It was such a lovely memory that we determined to relive it on our second Camino (in October, not June like the first one). The temperature was only just above freezing and the icecream was so hard the guy had to cut it with a knife instead of scooping it. Maybe you could have a silly icecream tomorrow! (-kiwi family from the Camino forum)

    1. An excellent idea Rachael!!! I am planning on a food slant on the blog shortly...given me "food" for thought! Lucky you to have actually walked the Camino Primitivo...I look forward to that chance