Day 1- Celorio to Ribadesella – 25km
Oh help me now!
After sleeping like the dead last night in our little Pensiòn Mariaje room following our dinner of a banana and some cheese, we awoke to a soaked Asturias. The kindly Grandma who opened the breakfast bar early (8am) to appease the hungry hordes, told us in broken English that it had rained all night. The weather was apparently affecting her joints. It was to do the same to us (off and on) for the next seven hours.
We left the Pensiòn satiated and dressed for a downpour. It wasn’t long until our shoes were soaked and coated in mud. The temperature hovered around ten degrees celsius most of the day although at times it must have slipped a little lower as I visualized my huffing and puffing on some of the uphill climbs.
We did see one French pilgrim -Michel- who thought it hilarious that we were all named Michelle. He was on day ten and henced zoomed past us very early. We won’t likely see him again. He said that he had only seen five pilgrims on his Camino so far. Maybe he needs to slow down.
We also saw a couple of biceregrinos in the beautiful town of Nueva. Michael gazed longingly at them as he envied their speed. Due to the wetness of the paths, we had to use the “bici” way a few times as negotiating the many puddles slowed us down to a crawl in some parts. We never saw any of the bikes on these detours.
Limping into our final destination of Ribadesella in the rain, we were met by a local riding a bike with two dogs strapped to the handlebars. He was selling us a room for the night at his place in the old town. By this time our frayed and saturated nerves only had one place in mind, the local (and cheap) youth hostel which the guide book stated was open all year. It lied. Luckily we just had the strength to go next door to the three star Hotel Ribadesella Playa. It maybe a little out of our Camino budget but the hot shower and warm bed was beckoning. I needed some pampering, and this is just day one.