And so, finally I have left Portugal behind me and I’m trundling through Spain. Don’t get me wrong, Portugal was nice enough but it just isn’t me… People say the Portuguese are pleasant.. they are.. they say the food is amazing.. maybe it is but I’m not that kind of guy.. I like plain stuff.. chips.. pizza.. bread.. cheese..
I’m just over halfway so I guess I’m qualified to offer an opinion on the Portuguese route so far. (We all know how good I am at halfway through opinions.. see Casa Fernanda)..
It’s been ok.. there’s no sense of detachment like the Camino Frances.. but I expected that.. for a week I was within 120km from the start and now I’m within 120km of the end. The scenery has been ok but I’d guess 80% asphalt or cobbles and I’ve always been within 2 hours of a town/village/bunch of houses. It’s difficult to feel lost in the wild when there’s a traffic light/supermarket/barbershop every hour or two. (There really is an abundance of barbers.. it’s quite bizarre).
Anyway enough about that.. let’s get to today. We left Valenca and instantly found ourselves on the bridge that not only spans the river but also transports you from one country to another.. even though we only took a couple of minutes to cross it felt strange to step onto the bridge at 8.15 and walk of it at 9.20..
And then, once our feet felt real ground beneath us we were greeted with this sight.
España… The land of the legendary 10 beans out of 10 coffee.. my heart skipped a beat as I imagined the joy that lay ahead. Also I can speak a little bit of Spanish.. no more obrigado.. from now on it would be any of the twelve words I know.. I’m practically a native..
Leaving Tui, the path splits and we were confronted with an option.. straight road path.. bars along the way but no shade and death defying traffic or a slightly longer path with little or no services but hopefully some shade..
Being the long distance/endurance types we choose the longer path. I’m glad we did. Again, the day was well into the 90s and a bit of shade really helped. Even out off the sun my feet must have hit 140 degrees.. now, as you know, I’m not one to exaggerate for effect but I believe there was a group of hobbits trying to catch me so they could destroy an evil ring by melting it in my shoes.
We eventually got to O Porriño and found where we were staying.. I decided not to have a coffee.. sometimes it’s better to wait… tomorrow morning will be the true test.
I think we walked around 20km today and both feet have finally succumbed to blisters.. only one tiny one on each foot but obviously I’ve done nothing but moan about them all day. I even tried getting sympathy from an old Spanish woman but she realised what was happening and sprinted away as I was struggling to remove my sock.
I guess it’s time to call it a day. I have a date with a cafe con leche first thing tomorrow and I honestly can’t wait.