León is worth staying another day, so in lack of exciting news from the road, here are some facts about my backpack ;). My entire gear weighs only 7.6 kg - the selection process would have made any geek proud :D. Included is the backpack itself, everything I wear during the day, the trekking poles, my running shoes, and a sleeping bag. Furthermore, all my diabetes related stuff as well as absolute necessities like a power bank and a small tripod for my phone ;). Add up to 2 liters of water and enough carbs to keep my blood glucose level up under all circumstances, and I'm good to go :).
A surprisingly tough decision, but I decide that I do want a replacement phone for the rest of the trip. I love taking photos and I want to connect with my friends again. To reach a proper shop before the weekend, I speed things up and take the train to León (57 km). To my surprise, being on the train feels just right. Eventually, after a mere 15,000 steps around various (repair) stores, I settle on a used Sony Z3. Main feature: it's waterproof :D.
Carrión de los Condes to Sahagún (42 km). I feel lucky. This part of the Camino, the Meseta, might have been a pain in hot weather; but since it's raining for the third day in a row, it's actually quite pleasant. Just don't take a break - you'll lose the momentum and your body will hurt afterwards. The trick is to do everything while walking: measuring the glucose level, eating, drinking, putting on sunscreen (well, maybe not today). 130 km in the last 3 days? Not bad. 10,000 steps a day more than done 😉
Castrojeriz to Carrión de los Condes (46 km). I'm alone and completely offline - what an interesting experience. With my phone dead, I have no map, no guidebook, no camera, no dictionary, no music, nobody can get hold of me, and I cannot contact anyone. I just walk. Follow the yellow arrows. Estimate distances from road signs. Practically no other pilgrim in sight today. And I love it.
Photo by Torsten.
Rain! 8 hours of walking in liquid sunshine - the entire 42 km to Castrojeriz. This photo was taken the day after, so you can imagine what it looked like during the rain ;). Why the day after? Well, I did not miss the opportunity and drowned my iPhone right away inside my "waterproof" jacket (to be fair, the pocket proved to be watertight from the inside out ;)).
Photo by Torsten.
Delighted to see my friends again, I spend the entire day exploring and enjoying Burgos. Hanging out at the Plaza del Rey San Fernando in front of the impressive cathedral, chatting with other pilgrims, laughing, sharing stories, having a good time until midnight. What a great day catching up with so many interesting characters I met along the way 🙂
Must. Walk. Slower. Started too fast again, which led to cramps in my shinbone muscles. But after a few hours I'm always in the zone: marching steady, fast, pushed by some music or lost in thoughts. At 3 p.m., 40 km into the day, I reach Burgos. Arriving in a bigger city always feels great: Like a top athlete crossing the finish line, with the crowd waiting 😉
Note to self: Take care of your 3 remaining socks! Burnt one at the attempt to quick-dry them with a hairdryer while having breakfast ;). Usually, I dry my second pair (yes, I have only 2 pairs with me) while walking, but two nights ago I was too lazy to do the laundry. Towards the end of the day I had to make a tough decision... and decided to leave my friends again and continue on to Villafranca Montes de Oca. After all, I want to reach Burgos tomorrow.
Best evening so far! After a rather grumpy start into another 30 km day - and a little sightseeing on the way - we managed to get an entire house in Grañón for just the five of us! Even better, Iva and Kathi served the best dinner on the entire Camino ... what a treat after the usual pilgrim's menus in the restaurants! Combine that with lots of fun watching soccer together… love you guys!!