Day 10- Vilalba to Baamonde (bus)
Baamonde to Miraz- 14.6km
We woke to rain. Galicia is a green region for a reason. It rains most of the time here, although oddly, they have water restrictions. A decision needed to be made- walk 20km to Baamonde (and still be a day behind schedule); walk 35km to Miraz (and be on schedule); or catch a bus to Baamonde, then walk to Miraz. It was time for an easy day.
It was 10.30am before we were ejected from the bus into the rain at Baamonde, the disputed 100km mark on the Norte. This is the minimum amount of kilometres that pilgrims need to walk to gather their Compostella in Santiago. We had hoped to see a few more walkers from here. By the first five kilometres, we were passed by a trio of Spanish men (who had started from Navia, about 140km back). We also met a group of six Catholic college girls (from Peru, Mexico and Spain) staying at the Albergue de Perigrinos here in Miraz, who started today at Baamonde.
The walk took us four hours to complete as the rain made the conditions tough. Some of the paths were barely passable due to the quagmire of mud and silage to traverse. We did pass a 14th century church, the Chapel of San Alberte, that looked heavenly in these atmospheric conditions. A few of the very small villages could have easily made it on the Hobbit- town movie lot.
Miraz was a place that was on our wish list. Our guidebook had said that the Albergue is run by volunteers from the British Confraternity of St James. English speaking hospitaleros. What a joy to be understood. Ted and Avril are a retired couple from the Midlands who donate a few weeks a year to run this donativo Albergue. They are a lovely couple who have made us, and the six college girls, very welcoming. They are into their eighth year of volunteering and the stories they tell of past pilgrims, could easily fill a book. Four thousand passed through their door last year.
So as the rain eases, and our clothes dry by the fire, it is time to walk up to the town for a bite before bed. Buenos noches everybody.