Another fine day for us today – entering the Meseta part of the Camino (which Dave tells us means ‘table’, in recognition of it being a long, flat plain). We set a good pace, stopping for breakfast at a cute albergue along the way, complete with medieval-ish round table and lighting. We were joined for breakfast by Nick and Jim, a father & son from Alice Springs in Australia (or, as Jim so eloquently put it when introducing himself: ‘from the middle of f*#%ing nowhere’). These two were actually the first people I haven’t warmed to on the Camino – they didn’t seem interested in giving genuine or thoughtful answers to questions (as all other pilgrims have done), but were full of smarty pants one-liners and it was as if they were playing the roles of big-drinkin’, swearin’, stirrin’ Aussies from the desert. The dad, Nick, claimed this was his fifth Camino – although it sounds as though he does much of his walking by bus or taxi between main towns. I guess it takes all types and we have certainly met a lot of different folk thus far on the Camino, but these were two peeps I was not sad to leave behind.
Our walking group is six at the moment and it’s great to have company when you feel like chatting, but equally great to have time for silence and solitude when you feel like thinking. We’re going at a similar pace over these mostly flat days, stopping for breakfast (mostly for the hit from the cafe con leche) at the nearest town (which has sometimes been 9km away) and trying to walk as far as we can before the heat sets in.
We arrived at our destination – Castrojeriz – at around 1.30pm, which was really good going. It’s another cute town and we decided to have our main meal at lunchtime today (when in Spain…) so went to a restaurant for the pilgrims’ menu. I tried gazpacho, which was really delicious. As was the chocolate pudding covered in cream for dessert. We pilgrims have to keep up our energy!