It’s easy to push yourself too hard on the Camino. You want to walk. You came here to walk. Just a few more kilometres…
It’s not so easy to rest. But it’s important to do so. It’s vital for your body, and it’s also good for your soul. I remember reading a sign last year that summed it up: andar y descansar (to walk and to rest). Whilst I don’t wish to take life lessons from motivational phrases, it’s good to have balance.
Yesterday we walked a speedy 26 kilometres. Much like the previous days, the Camino was hot and flat. On the horizon, heat hazes meant the sizzling road blurred with the sky. This effect was only occasionally punctuated by the dark silhouette of another pilgrim disappearing into the distance.
Despite the long stretches, there were regular places to stop, little oases in the meseta. And, at four pm, we reached a beautiful hostel in Puente Villarente, with a huge shady garden. We had time to relax, to read, and to chat with the other pilgrims who had found their way to our little jewel of the Camino.
In the evening, we shared a convivial pilgrims meal, with some delicious tempranillo, which set us up for a good night’s sleep!
Today, Elke and I decided we would only go as far as Leon, to give us time to rest and explore the city. This meant Inês had to leave us, which was sad, but we hope to see her again. Friends from the Camino have a habit of becoming friends for life.
She left with our two new friends, Joaquim and Florian from dinner the night before. Buen Camino to them all!
Now Elke and I have time to amble about Leon, which feels like such a luxury on the Camino. It’s a lovely time to visit. The city is dressed up to the nines for Holy Week. We have already enjoyed some lovely food, and later we will visit the Cathedral.
It’s good to walk, but it’s good to rest too.