May 2. Day 36. 14.5 km. Departed 0730 hours, arrived at 1315 hours (after a one hour lunch stop).
Here are some pictures of Melide from yesterday evening when we walked up to a scenic viewpoint.
In the distance is the Iglesia de Santci Spiritus. One will see its bell tower as one walks into the town.
Part of Melide. Following two pictures taken from the grounds of Iglesia del Carmen, west end of town.
The upper part of the main altar of Iglesia de Santci Spiritus depicts the Assumption of the Virgin contemplated by the 12 Apostles in a composition that gives a sense of upward movement.
A shorter walk today due to some steep uphill stretches (latter emphasized by Roberto, our Camino Spaniard).
There was no fog, and getting out of Melide into the countryside was relatively short. We definitely came across more peregrinos since the Frances route converges with Primitivo (Joon made an excellent point that the Primitivo was the original route into Santiago). Thus, Frances converges ‘into’ Primitivo.
As we walked out of Melide, we came across this which we had seen on our Camino Portuges.
It’s set up and fed by a river. All four sides have sloping ledges. In the center is where the body of water pools. What do you think this was used for? Answer later.
A great forested section of today’s walk.
As you exit Boente, you will pass the Iglesia de Santiago de Boente on the right. Given the Camino is because of St James, and a sello is available, it’s worth dropping in.
Much further away, we opted for the alternate non-road route, and were treated to amazing views.
The trees and skies were a real treat.
Remember the uphill sections mentioned earlier? That’s how one gets amazing views like this!
Puente Ribadiso over the Iso River. Pilgrims, punning on it, called it Puente Paradiso (Paradise Bridge). A bridge has spanned here since 572!
Anticipating the last uphill challenge, we were swayed by this persuasive poster. And had lunch before reaching our destination (atypical for us).
Rather than opting for any set menu, given there were 4 of us, we decided on ala carte. We had pulpo, calamari, padron peppers and spaghetti. This approach worked out very well.
This final uphill stretch was ‘played up’ by Roberto. It was very manageable and easier than yesterday’s uphill. And that picture was a communal lsundry washing structure!
We are not relationship counsellors. But we do know that one important aspect of our Camino is to strengthen our bonds of love. So, I created a special memory event for Joon in the Mesetas. Walking together, walking separately but within sight, is our Camino approach. Talking about stuff that we normally don’t, expands our togetherness. Expressing feelings and love more openly is a joy. Praying together is our offering.
Two days to Santiago. Buen Camino.
Post Script: We are lodging at Apartmentos Arzua with our friends. We are using only two of the four bedrooms. There is a well equipped kitchen with washing machine and a comfortable furnished living room. It’s costing us Euro 70. A fantastic deal. Especially since we were able to make our own dinner.