Doug and Dave walk the Camino de Santiago
Day 1, Thursday, April 12, 2007
Astorga -to- Rabanal
Distance travelled today: 21.4 km, 13.3 mi Total distance walked: 21.4 km, 13.3 mi Distance to Santiago: 249.6 km, 155.1 mi
Doug and Dave stand before the Iglesia de Santa Maria in Astorga in the morning
as we start out on our journey to Santiago
Dave points to our position near Murias, west of Astorga. Here the Camino follows the road.
For lunch, we stopped at the Restaurante San Blas in the town of Santa Catalina
about 10 km (6.2 mi) from Astorga. Our typical lunch was coffee or soft drink
and a hearty bocatillo (sandwich) of jamón (smoked, thin sliced pork loin)
Doug on left and Dave on right encounter the only rain, 2 hours, in what will be 15 days of
walking! It rained hard; lightning and thunder accompanied us as we climbed the hill.
Doug's new external frame backpack was made of aluminum and we were worried that he would
make an excellent lightning rod! On the average in April, the Camino gets 14 days of rain!
St. James must have been looking over us with a smile!
The fence next to the Camino in these photos ran on for at least 100 yards.
Peregrinos like us had placed hundreds of makeshift stick crosses along
the entire length of the fence.
By 4:30 PM we arrived at the town of Rabanal, 21.4 km (13.3 mi) from Astorga,
and checked in to the Albergue Gaucelmo.
On the left is a view from the albergue balcony towards town.
On the right are our gracious hosts, Allison Raja (author of several Camino guidebooks)
and Frank, dressed in his traditional Scottish kilt. Notice the wash tubs in the photo;
they are typical of the tubs we used to hand wash our clothes along the Camino.
This albergue had a library/fireplace room. In the evening, Frank invited the
pilgrims to pass a candle around and tell stories (preferably ghost stories) while
the fire crackled in the background. A wonderful evening!