As sometimes happens, life and plans (not to mention insane politics) get in the way of blogging, but now that a few things have sorted themselves out – a new contract, a postponement and an extension – things seem to be back on track again for the immediate future. So I can be off again soon with less weight on my shoulders, seeking out some stress relief on the lovely, lush trails of Galician Spain. I can almost smell the air on the hilltops already.
Yes, I am going back to Astorga again, to walk back to Santiago – up to rugged Foncebadón, down the steep hills to Acebo and finally Molinaseca; up to O Cebreiro to thank Elías Valiña and down again to crowded Sarria, where I will join the flow of fresh and excited pilgrims, many of them on their first adventure. And I look forward to it, even the Sarria thing. I just let them get a head start and saunter after them – I am in no hurry.
It looks like May will be blessed with sunshine, so I am packing light, but since I will cross into Galicia on the way, I am also taking my poncho and rain trousers. Having done this a few times already, I know I can manage with less than I sometimes take, even though my pack is light as it is. This time though, I am going to aim for minimalist simplicity where I can, with two sets of clothes, sleeping bag, wash bag, rain gear, down jacket – it gets cold in the hills in the morning – and my Pacerpoles are already in the post and will be waiting for me in Rabanal.
I will be staying mostly in albergues, which I haven’t really done since 2015, because I have been walking with people I know and have shared rooms with them. On our walk in September I looked at the groups of young and not so young people who had met in albergues and thought, I want to do that one more time. Maybe I’ll hate it now I have gotten used to en suite rooms, or maybe I’ll love it again! I’ll find out soon enough.
Maybe I’ll want to walk on my own, maybe I’ll end up walking on my own, maybe I won’t. I do know I will meet excited new peregrina K somewhere along the way, and David ClearSkies in Santiago for a celebratory drink in the Café Casino, and everything else is just a bonus.