Monday 17 September 2019
I have an admission to make. I’m paying the Spanish Post Office (Correos) €20 to collect my back pack every morning and ‘fingers-crossed’ deliver it to my Albergue every afternoon. Hurrah. Worth every Euro.
So my first stop this morning at 8.30am is the main Post Office in Santiago.
It’s wonderful to be on the Camino again and as I fall into my stride, with my walking poles tapping out a familiar 4 beat time, tears comes to my eyes. The rhythm is hard-wired into my system after walking the Camino del Norte and anchors me deep into the Earth and Place.
The smell of eucalyptus, pine, bracken and oak woods drift in the air with blackbird song and the croak of crows providing the soundtrack, with the occasional thud of acorns hitting the ground.
I’m on my way to Negreira about 22 Km with the usual ups and downs in between. The highlight is a spectacular village called Ponte Maceiera, which has a long curved bridge over a granite boulder-strewn weedy river and a roaring weir.
From there it’s about an hour’s walk to Negreira where I book into my first Albergue of this trip... it’s basic, but my backpack awaits me.
As you leave the town there is a picturesque gatehouse and square which has a sculpture depicting a Gallego family; I remember it from last time.
It depicts a Galician father setting out on a journey, his feet uprooted from the soil from which he sprang, leaving his plough, wife and two children behind. Thousands of Gallegos emigrated all around the world in the late C19th and early C20th, mainly to Argentina, UK and Central Europe.