We’re Halfway There!! (Days 20 and 21 on the Camino)

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At the halfway point!

At the halfway point!

We passed the halfway point on our pilgrimage from St. Jean Pied de Port to Santiago this afternoon! It is hard for us to grasp, but each step is bringing us closer to our goal. The city of Sahagun has erected a monument marking the exact halfway point and for us it became a time and place for a small celebration. We are sometimes not exactly sure why we are doing this, but the progress we have made so far is giving us encouragement to keep taking that next step. Today also marks the completion of our third week on the Camino. So far we have covered about 410 km (255 miles) on our pilgrimage to Santiago!

imageOur original plan had laid out two very strenuous days of 26.9 km (16.7 miles) each for yesterday and today. So, we decided to divide it up into three shorter days. Yesterday we hiked about 18 km to the town of Caldadilla de la Cueza, and today we hiked about 22 km to Sahagun. We are still very much in the Mesata and the scenery is mostly flat farmland, but with a beauty that is unmistakeable. For a long stretch yesterday (almost 12 km), we were on the Via Aquitana – the remains of an original Roman road that is still intact after 2,000 years of use. It ran straight as an arrow, with little or no shade. But, the connection with history was very clear. It is interesting that since this region is a bogland without any natural stone it is estimated that the Romans had to import around 100,000 tons of stone from elsewhere just to raise the roadbed above the winter flood levels in this part of the Via Aquitana.

Today we continued on to Sahagun. Where possible we chose to follow the more rural optional routes rather than the autopistas that run directly next to the area’s highways. Not too much else to report today. The Camino is being fairly kind to us. We had been expecting rain today, but didn’t get much more than a few sprinkles. Our bodies and feet, although tired at the end of each day, are not giving us many problems. In fact, the first few hours each day feel very good. It isn’t until the sun comes out and begins to bake us that we start to fade and our feet start to hurt. Thankfully, because of the rains in the area we had cloud cover most of the day and cool breezes. It was perfect weather for a pilgrimage.

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¡Buen Camino!

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