We went into this day with some high hopes. We knew it as a longer day of walking: for Stephen in general and for me because I'm trying to prevent blisters from returning. But we weren't rushing and thought that at least this is our best chance to see some rainbows and sheep.
See, two years ago, I had scrumptious endless rainbows and a flock of sheep on this day of walking. The clouds parted at opportune moments all day long. Even the castle in Ponferrada had a huge double rainbow arcing above. (See http://letallwhoarethirstycome.blogspot.com/2014/09/day-7-rainbows-on-rocks.html to see the blog from that day two years ago). And going past the village of Acebo, I walked past a large flock of sheep with a walking shepherd who made sure that the old, young, and sick were cared for and not left behind.
It was beautiful. It was biblical.
But nothing like that was seen today. Just 30km of wind and good deal of rain. No flock of sheep. No endless rainbows.
We met Wesley of San Diego studying at Wheaton College, which given their focus is a bit of a surprise here on the Camino. He's interested in military chaplaincy. We ran into Chelsea and Abby , whom we chatted with at dinner in Foncebadon, at the Cruz de Ferro. And Theresa Kem of South Africa waved me down at Molinaseca from her albergue porch. We hadn't seen each other since before the the Meseta. She is almost finished with her Camino as she's doing the last leg (Logorño to Sarria) and she'll have done the entire pilgrimage in three pieces. It was nice to catch up with her and the talk about the others we met from the days walking with Daniel.
Stephen and I napped since it was a long day for him and I needed to rest my feet if I were to avoid the return of blisters. We then walked around Ponferrada, checked out the Templario Castillo (where the Knights Templar operated from), did a load of wash at the laundromat, mimed to buy contact solution (never learned those words in class), and just enjoyed small city life.
And though we didn't see rainbows now a flock of sheep, the day did not disappoint. We saw younger, older, saner, clever, less lucid people all around us throughout the day. And in a way as I think of it, we did get to see a rainbow and sheep. We said goodbye to Jose and Miguel who owned and operated the tienda and hostal we stayed at in Foncebadon. They've been married 3 years and were happily working together like an old fashioned Spanish couple with strong Roman Catholic traditions about family being together all day. We invited them to our home in LA and wished them the best.
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