Day 20 – Hosptial de Orbigo
I did 29 km today. My ankle swelled up a bit a but I found that if I changed my stride a bit the pain diminished quite a bit. I left León a bit before Keith. But he, of course, passed me at some point. I must have been sitting having a café con leche or orange juice at the time.
I met up with Morag and Peter at Villadangos del Páramo. They were leaving as I arrived, but I found Danny and a German named Anne. I chatted with them while I had a quick fresh squeezed orange juice. They walked ahead and I very shortly had to rest at the side of the road to eat my packed lunch.
I met up with Peter and Morag a second time at San Martin del Camino, had a Pepsi with them and met Pixel II. Morag was a in a bit of pain and they both seemed tired today. I met up with them a third time as we entered Hospital de Orbigo. As we walked to town we saw cloth hanging from lines between the buildings and we debated whether the hangings we saw where banners or laundry. It turns out that they were banners for an upcoming festival. We ended up in the German albergue. It is very beautiful here and the hospitaler is quite nice too. He was talking to some people about how he felt that something needs to be done about the tourigrinos that do not walk or bike. Apparently he is working with other hospitalers to institute a black list of tourigrinos.
Keith is here too, but he took the taxi to find a dentist. While he was gone it started to rain. I took his socks from the line and I put them on his pack. When he got back, without any aid for his tooth, he thought someone had stole them. Morag told him the good news that I had saved them from the rain.
I went shopping at a little store near the start of town. I then walked down to the bridge and the tournament field. We will miss the yearly festival celebrating Don Suer de Quiniones. In 1434, Don Suero de Quiniones, pledged his love to a woman who, regrettably did not reciprocate. He fastened an iron collar around his neck as a sign that he was bound to her. He vowed that it would not be removed it until he had defeated 300 challengers on the bridge. Knights poured in from all over Europe and all that summer. He met and defeated them on the bridge of Orbigo. Once he had met his challenge, he made his pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. It looks like an exciting festival, complete with jousting. Too bad I can’t wait for it.
Keith and I were able to switch our rooms over to the front room that Morag and Peter are in. This will let us coordinate ourselves better in the morning. After that , the four of us went out to dinner. I had an amazing trout soup. As Peter said, it the best kind of soup, one that you can use a fork to move to one side of the plate. It is several large cubes of bread, sitting in a lovely broth, and a cross-slice of trout on top. The waiter should us how to use our forks to flick out the ribs with a swoop and similarly slip off the skin,. You then mash the fish into the bread and stir. It was heavenly. I followed that up with a equally good baked, whole trout. The wine was nice too. We walked back to the albergue, quite full and content.
I thought a lot about Sandy today. I think often of how just as I am leaving in the morning she is just going to sleep and how as I go to sleep, she is just leaving work. I look up at the night sky and she sees a blue sunny sky. Strange.