We’re walking the Camino de Santiago in June 2022. Come along with us!

Day 9: Portomarín, sunburn and vino blanco

The road from Sarria was much busier than we’re used to—it’s the shortest distance (about 100km) you can be on the walk to Santiago and receive an official compostela. And so, we walked with large groups of students, and some people noticeably wearing non-Camino clothes, and a few more people with dogs.

I love all these fancy gates.
Muchas vacas.
Another cemetery.

Today, we’re four warm days from Santiago. Everyone is a little beat up. Today the sun got to me in that long unshaded stretch into Portomarín. This morning, the trash can in our albergue bathroom was filled with bloody bandages—someone in our bunk room has been having problems with blisters. Tonight we went to eight o’clock mass, and I noticed that the man next to me had two completely black toenails. He also rubbed his right calf during the entire service, even when standing. We met some women at a rest stop this morning who told me that they had taped nearly every part of their bodies in their walk from St. Jean Pied-de-Port. I have my knee taped, my big toe Compeed and bandaged, and I’ve rubbed a sore on my armpit from my backpack straps. Will’s hugest injury, now that his vasculitis has calmed down a bit, is a hellacious farmer’s tan.

Wow, he was pretty pale at the start of this trip. 😉
It also helps to take the feet out of the shoes when we stop, to cool them off a bit. Hot feet = blisters.
How about a food pic? This yogurt probably came from a Galician cow, and with raw honey on top was my favorite thing ever. It even put this torta española to shame.
And dear reader, you’ll be happy to know that after nearly two weeks in Spain, I have scored some stracciatella.
And while I’m at it, I’ll mention that the vending machines around here serve beer. Today on the way, beer was 50 cents and water a euro. 🤔
We walked across this long and somewhat terrifying bridge to Portomarín—or at least, I was scared. This better not be part of the route out of town.
And then, to add insult to injury, we had to climb up these steps. I nearly laid down on the ground and cried. Did I mention that we’d already walked 17 miles at this point?
Our room in Portomarín—a luxury after our shared dormitory situation last night. Also, best pillow in Spain so far.
The Igrexa de San Xoán de Portomarín. We met a Dutch couple —Adrian and Ingrid— who told us some of the history of the cathedral. Apparently when the dam was built in the 1960s, the church was disassembled brick by brick and reassembled on higher ground. Pretty cool.

And now, dear reader, I am tired. My head is still pounding a bit from the sun, and at 10:02, I can barely keep my eyelids open. Tomorrow is a longer day to Palais de Rey… and I need my sleep if I’m going to make it. 😴 – Paula


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