Friday, July 03, 2009

Day 36 - Portomarin - Monday 25 May 2009

Portomarin -> Portomarin = Zero K (Still 90K to go!)

“Rainy days and Mondays always get me down.”

It is cold and rainy. My left shin feels stiff, sore and is swollen. I dress and put on my pack, hoping I can walk off the pain and make a short day (15K), but as I stride up the hill, through the cold rain, I realize I need to take a day off. I run into the Canadian who is suffering from blister issues and accompany him to the local medical facility to help with language challenges. (He speaks no Spanish.)

So here I am back at the albergue, sipping espresso from the vending machine while the staff mops floors around me. Outside, fog has rolled in – the lake view is almost obscured. It feels strange to be in this large, empty place.

A little about the lake: the Belesar Reservoir is a man made lake. Portomorin was nestled in a valley and was completely submerged when the reservoir was built. The old St Nickolas Church was moved, block by block to the top of the hill where it looks down on the lake. All the other buildings in town are only a few decades old. Fish swim in and out of the empty homes submerged in the vast lake.

The damp, chilly weather makes me miss my fleece. I left it behind somewhere and really haven’t missed it until now. When I am walking I keep warm enough most days.And I wear my rain poncho to help with the wind and cold.

Around 1300 I ventured out to find some groceries. I have the kitchen to myself essentially. I came home with a large ripe tomato, a bag of cheese tortellini and some wine. I also splurged on a novel to read during the rainy afternoon. There were about 5 titles in English to choose from. The book was eminently forgettable.

As I was preparing my simple repast, the Canadian appeared and joined me for lunch. He contributed a loaf of bread and conversation. He also washed the dishes. Outside the miserable rain continued.

After lunch, I showered and crawled into my upper bunk to read and nap the rainy afternoon away.

The extra day was necessary, but I was sorry to fall behind my familiar companions. I wonder who will be in Santiago when I finally arrive?

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