My short day to Carrion had a strategy to it: the next stage on the Camino is a whooper, and I wanted to be rested for it. The first section is 17 k on the flat Meseta without any services, including water. This was where I was thankful it was April, not July.
The dotted yellow line is the Camino. I could have stopped at Calzadilla, but I got caught up in the excitement about a 27k day to Terradillos, and went for it.
It wasn’t too bad, really. Sun and clouds, no rain, cool temperatures. The first couple of hours I listened to the birds and was lost in my thoughts. The second couple of hours I listened to old favorites like James Taylor’s “Sweet Baby James” album, and John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High” singing along as loud as I pleased. Then there were a couple of necessary pit stops. None of those services, either. Had a big salad for lunch at Calzadilla. The bookmobile was also in town.
The afternoon was harder. Just when I was feeling draggy, a Dutch woman came up alongside me and we talked for the next two hours. Her name was “Jacqueline, like Kennedy” and we had a fun time. Turns out that she is from Neighmegan (sic), the same town Hale and I visited when we hitched a ride inParis with a Dutch couple named Meip and Albert. They took us home with them. They had three little kids, who must be forty by now.
Jacqueline had 20 year old twin boys, and was a widow. We talked about kids and husbands and our Camino experience. She was going to Santiago.
At the end of the day we got to Albergue Jacque de Molay, and just about fell in the door. Bride of Frankenstein.
The Albergue was one of those Camino oases run by a family who know the needs of pilgrims. They washed your clothes for 7€, a bed was 8€, and dinner was 10€. There were 4 young Korean women in my room and Jacqueline. So it looked like a snore-free night.
After some Spanish ibuprofen 600mll, and a shower, we all gathered in the dining room and had an excellent meal. I had my only trout this trip. I sat with a Spanish woman from Pamplona, a Swiss woman, and a Finnish woman. My Spanish got a workout, but the Swiss womsn did some working around in French. Jacqueline was reunited with her pilgrim family, a boisterous group. I wished I could have joined them, but I was too tired to be boisterous, and went upstairs to enjoy a full nights’ sleep on my bottom bunk.