- Distance today: 11.8 mi
- Distance Camino 2017: 239.2mi
Today almost all of our walk was on a gravel/dirt path parallel to a two lane, lightly traveled highway.
We walked through the villages of Población de Campo (pop. 140):
Revenga de Campos (pop.179):
Villarmentero de Campos (pop. 11)):
and Villalcazar de Sirga (pop.174):
They were all spaced 2-3 miles apart and few if any services were available in each village. It usually took less than 5 minutes to pass through each village. In between the villages were flat, fields as far as you could see in all directions.
This is the meseta. Many guidebooks and other writings describe the meseta as dull, monotonous, repetitive, bleak, hot, cold, uninteresting, etc. We’ve known many pilgrims who skip it altogether by taking a bus. Many walk to Burgos and stop. Others begin in Leon and walk to Santiago.
We love the meseta. The endless fields and frontier-like villages scattered along the Way, because of their simplicity, are actually soothing, proving time for reflective thinking or non-thinking (meditation) while you walk without distraction or stimulus, other than the breeze, the sun, the sky, the endless fields and what you are feeling physically and/emotionally.
Today was a great day. We felt good both during and after what was our longest and fastest walk so far…averaging 3 miles an hour for almost 12 miles!
We walked straight to our Hotel Santiago in Carrión de Los Condes (pop.2221) and were warmly received by the owner who happens to be the grandson of the owner of the hotel we stayed in two nights ago.
Our habitacion con bano (40€) is one of the nicest, spacious we have occupied so far.
After completing our chores we had lunch at a nice restaurant a few blocks away. We had two delicious meals and will definitely snack for dinner.
Tonight we attended a mass at the Iglesia de Santa María del Camino for Peregrinos, which we attended passively as it was all in Spanish and we didn’t recognize any of the songs, ritual or responsive readings. At the end of the service the 50-60 pilgrims attending came down to the front of the church to be recognized by country (we were the only Americans). The priest gave a personal blessing to each of us. Also we were each presented a handmade star to carry with us, representing the blessing for a good Camino and a good life afterwards.