Day 39- El Burgo Ranero to Reliegos

  • Distance today:                      8.0 mi
  • Distance Camino 2017:     282.8 mi

The first 6 miles today, since we are still on the meseta, were flat terrain and recently harvested wheat fields. We are beginning to see a mountain range to the north of us as we get closer and closer to Leon.

The straight path and narrow 2-lane asphalt road ran parallel, separated only by a drainage ditch. We opted for the road most of the way to keep Linda from picking up small pebbles in her sandals.

There were no services at all today, so we got croissants at our hotel on the way out and stopped after 4 miles at a picnic shelter for a simple breakfast break.

The last couple of miles were a little more interesting in that the road/path actually made a few turns and went up and down several times before we reached Reliegos.

At the first bar, we stopped for breakfast and restrooms (not necessarily in that order!).

Reliegos (pop.237), originally the Roman town of Palantia, was located at the convergence of three Roman military roads. Its modern claim to fame is being struck by a meteor in 1947. The 17.3 kilo (38lb) meteor is on display in the natural science museum in Madrid.

Our albergue, La Parada (30€), did not officially open until noon, but we negotiated with the housekeeper to trade our passports for a double room until checkin, so we could get on with our pilgrimly chores. We’re also sharing shower and bathroom facilities with 5 other double rooms, but since we were the only occupants so far, the facilities were all ours.

At noon we checked in, retrieved our passports and received a key to our room.  Our chores already done for the day, Linda decided to do some reading and Jim ventured out for some photos and to do a quality audit on the Spanish beer in the Albergue’s bar.

It’s amazing how the Camino talks to you. Jim has a group of muscles that have been bothering him the past several days. He knows that he typically doesn’t stand straight, his right shoulder dropping slightly lower than his left, normally not an issue. But carrying a 25 lb pack for nearly 300 miles over more than 30 continuous days will reveal things that otherwise may seem insignificant. Since the left shoulder had been “shouldering” more of the load, several days ago it started to rebel by creating a painful knotting muscle to get Jim’s attention. The remedy has been to make adjustments in the pack straps, stand up straighter and even try remembering to walk with the right shoulder higher, maybe where it belongs. Strangely enough, walking and standing correctly and more symmetrically seems to be helping, but 70 year old habits are hard to break, so the current new biofeedback and the Camino are collaborating to improve Jim’s posture.

We had a light lunch in the La Parada bar then returned to our room for most of the afternoon (Jim nap, Linda read). Our clothes dried in 2 hours.

La Parada didn’t serve their dinner menu until 7:00p.m., so Jim’s earlier recon of the village revealed that Albergue Gil, just a few blocks from us served their menus all day, so we had dinner at Gil’s.

After dinner we took a short walk to visit the village church and took a few photos then returned to our room for the evening.

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