Manatu

Pig's Ear Park and Other Adventures

a bit of a climb….

left the golfers ( the hotel catered for golfers, on a golf course- of course )at 8 am and headed off, had my coffee down the hill and set forth for the 25 ks..
Crossed the Ponte de lima for what will probably be the last time and headed into the wilds. Warned of a flooded area, god it was boggy…
met two Dutch women, Emily, sort of my age and Marijon, a few years younger…
What a great pair, been everywhere, done everything, m lives in Portugal and E has a holiday house there. Somewhere in the hinterland.
Emily has climbed annapurna and i have finally come to grips with the uppy bits, take smaller and smaller steps, coming down, the same and lean forward…

well, we had plenty of uppys today, a 400 m slog then a 500 metre slog. The latter was a killer but great views back down the Lima valley.
LOADS of pilgrims, well at least twenty, even met two aussie blokes who have walked from lisbon, usual sheep jokes of course. Plus an irishman and a belgian woman who have also walked from Lisbon.
rained on and off thru the day but not as heavily as the previous few days. some very pretty scenery and nice walking although the old roman roads are a bit hard on the feet and scrambling down rocky inclines leaves a bit to be desired.
We all drank coffee and ate along the way and ended up in a assortment of dives in Rubias. About thirty people from many nationalities had dinner at the local restaurant, the only one.
The funniest are the strutting italian cyclists….
COLD as a gnats bum last night, slept virtually in my clothes, kept adding items as the night went on.
Up and away early this am met up with the two Dutch ladies again and we walked companionably on towards Tui.
had lunch along the way at a local bbq restaurant, and although I moan about the food, when they serve up plain old bbq chicken and chips and rice done well I am quite happy. Certainly does not upset my tum and avoiding salads has helped.
Restaurant was the watering hole for the local Bomberios, read firemen, had my photo taken with them!!!
next photo was with a local shepherd guarding his five sheep, one a ewe heavily pregnant, saw lambs today as well. tiny herds of sheep, about ten, kept saying they were my cousins, well Aussies don’t have the monopoly on sheep jokes.

Lovely coolish sunny day so that helped.
left my new Dutch Friends behind in Valenca, walked along, got lost then found the way again, and walked thru the original historic Forta Eleza, full of tourists, realised it was saturday…..

Headed across the Minho bridge, huge river and the bridge is about 600 m long and quite high above the water…
Awful, awful experience, I had a serious panic attack. i have never liked heights much and half way across started feeling really strange, like thinking about throwing my sticks over, got worse and worse and I did not know how i was going to get to the end of the bridge. quite high up, a clip on pedestrian crossing , with to me, huge gaps that I could have fallen thru..i can swim dammit so quite irrational. Thought i was going to have to crawl to the end, but pulled my hat around my face so I could only see the side facing the road bridge, still huge , seemingly , gaps between the clip on and the bridge. Heart thumping like mad i finally got across. had to stand and lean against a wall for about five minutes to come right. there were no other pedestrians but on past experience they would probably have just walked over my crawling body….
So, if anyone wants to kill me, just take me over the Auckland or Sydney Harbour bridge walks….,
usually forty minutes to find the damn hotel,everyone gives different directions, the provided map like all the agents stuff is useless..
Welcome to Spain,other side of the bridge is in Spain..
have seen no pilgrims in this hotel but two gave me directions on how to get here, wrong ones of course.
hotel is surprisingly clean and bright despite its exterior. Bed is made up with my sheets and madly another day off tomorrow, wont be going back for another look at Valenca or the fort, that is for sure.
Not sue how communication will be over the next week as no email connection in rubias. Then again she had no bath plugs either, take a shower she said, i jammed a towel over the plug hole and had quite a satisfactory bath…
may just catch a bus to Santiago today, bit of a haul but alternative is sitting in the hotel and visiting the local cathedral, that will take half an hour….and i saw it yesterday on the way in….

2 Comments

  1. Dear Margaret. U are such a funny lady, I read your blog in the mornings while eating my sultana bran choaking with laughter. You are gettin( there and when you get home in your nice warm bed you will be choaking over your bran as well. Keep them coming you are making an old girl happy in nz. Yes don’t you love the Aussie sheep jokes – not, we have come across a lot in our travels as well! Take care lots of love jean and joe xx

  2. thanks jean….xxx

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