Day 33- Astorga to Santa Catalina de Somoza

Walked Today: 5.8 mi / Camino2022: 221 mi

It was dark at 7 a.m. as we walked through Astorga. It was a chilly 50F and a slight breeze made it chillier! Street lights made headlamps unnecessary as we walked by the Hotel Gaudi (where we stayed in 2019), the Episcopal Palace ( designed and built by Gaudi and across the street from the hotel) and the Cathedral of Astorga , adjacent to the Episcopal Palace…. all somewhat visible in the dark.

Street lights followed us for nearly a half-mile outside the city and were replaced by natural light from first light and sunrise.

We walked along the lightly traveled road, then angled left onto a smaller road that took us into the Maragato community of Murias de Rechivaldo, one of about 40 villages around Astorga. The Maragato prople are rumored to be descended from the Berbers of North Africa, who arrived with the Muslim conquest in the 8th century and later converted to Christianity. Maragato men traditionally worked as muleteers, mule drivers who transported goods (especially fish and gold) around the peninsula.
approaching Murias de Rechivaldo where we stopped for breakfast
back on the dirt trail headed for Santa Catalina de Somoza.
…still chilly and as we climbed upward, leaving the meseta behind and heading into the mountains.
just outside our destination for the day… and possible obstruction ahead
this guy gave Jim a hard “you want a piece of me?” kind of stare, which Jim pretended to ignore, sorta, while snapping this photo and moved quickly on his way…. the young bull never budged… maybe it was the bright red/orange daypack Jim had on his back!
We have a pose similar to this one for each of our four visits to this village.
our room at Albergue San Blas
look what we found behind the “extra” door from our room, it’s ours alone
never pass up an opportunity to exploit extra space… or a single, lonely chair

….. does that chair… look like a….barber chair?….

Good grooming is a must for seasoned, over 75 pilgrims. When planning your Camino be sure to include a barber in your entourage.

Has anyone noticed that as we have moved closer to Santiago, that Linda is developing a halo?

We spent the day hanging out in our quite unusual habitation, venturing downstairs to the albergue bar for lunch (pizza) and dinner (paella).

Today’s walk was very easy, especially when compared to yesterday’s. Tomorrow we continue up the mountain toward Cruz de Ferro, the highest point on the Camino Frances at 1505 meters (4918 ft).

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