Saturday, June 25, 2016

The Camino Inglés: The Final Day

A relatively comfortable walk of only 16km today, though rather hilly at times. Especially at the start.

Here's the usual fotos of a city (Sigueiro) left behind in a river valley as we climb to a nearby peak.

Why no one has ever invented a camino which just follows a river or three, I will never know. But I assume it's because this would deprive villages and towns of camino income. Or because you'd end up in, say, Burgos.

Before I continue with yesterday's account, I just want to show you this contraption, which was beside the toilet in my room in the excellent Hostel Sigueiro. It's in place of a bidet, space being limited.

I suspected, and confirmed, a strong jet of water. In fact, so powerful I fear that, if you didn't have piles before you used it, you'd certainly have them afterwards.

Apart from the receding city, there really wasn't much to snap yesterday, especially as the last 6km passed through, first, an industrial park and, then, the outskirts of the city of Santiago. But we did take a pic of this chap in the village just before the bar at the edge of the Timbre polígono.

He informed us it was a quote from the guy who founded the Inditex chain, of which Zara is the flagship. He should know.

This is a place on the outskirts of Sigueiro which I'm thinking of buying as a pied-a-terre near Santiago. Lots of potential, as they say:

And here's a church at the start of our climb, with my colleagues doing a bit of a Dutch Bastard act on the inevitable incline.

But I have to admit I'm still slow on the hills. And every time I raced to catch up with them on the flat, a new hill loomed in front of us, separating us again. I'm designed for stamina on the level, not for fell or hill walking.

All in all, a great week, with very a companionable couple of companions. True, they found my sense of humour a tad too much at times. But who wouldn't?

Haveing missed a right turn and then hitting the main drag down into Santiago, I walked fast and actually arrived before my two friends who'd left the bar before me. So I lay down in the square in front of the cathedral to await them. A Polish couple asked if they could take a foto of me and explained it was "because you look exactly like someone should after a long and difficult walk." I wasn't sure how to take that. But I was sure how to deal with the 3 Rumanian women criminally pretending to be collecting for a deaf and dumb society and constantly hassling all the happy pilgrims. Why the local police permit this is beyond me. The station is only a hundred metres behind the square.

I then minded all our stuff while my friends went to get their Compostelas, or certificates of pilgrimage. This afforded me plenty more time to listen to the bane of Santiago - the bagpiper who plays in a short tunnel on one side of the cathedral. It's high time his cats were put out of their misery.

So, now it's back to the daily grind - or non-grind, in my case. Above all to the Brexit and its ramificactions. As if anyone really knows what these will be. Meanwhile, ahead of tomorrow's repeat general elections here in Spain, here's the FT on acting-President Rajoy. A man we could all do without except, it seems, his supine PP party. With 4 more years of him in prospect, I might well be induced to take Irish, rather than Spanish, nationality so as to stay comfortably here in Spain. But there's torrents of water to flow under that particular bridge as yet.


Eamon said...

Well Colin you are a brave man to take on such a hard journey and I take my hat off to you.

Perry said...


Sore feet do not a Camino make. A journey of a 1000 miles starts with a single step. Two metaphors that encapsulate my feelings about the wonderful decision to leave the EU. Although Boris has claimed there is no need to invoke article 50, that is the only legal process by which we negotiate our exit. I suspect he meant there is no need to invoke article 50, just yet.

The EU teat-sucking politicians can bluster all they want. We'll do things at our own convenience, not theirs.

Perry said...

Geert Wilders could eventually become PM of Holland & he has stated he'll offer the Dutch people an EU referendum.

From Dr. Richard North:

"However, with the promised resignation of Mr Cameron as Prime Minister, the excellent news is that he has had the sense to to defer the Article 50 notification to his successor. It will not - as Cameron suggested it might (another example of FUD) - be invoked immediately.

That gives us some time for reflection and planning, and also some mature consideration as to timing.

Key events are the French presidential elections in May next year and the German federal elections, which will be held between 27 August and 22 October 2017. Until those are over, and the new (or existing) German Chancellor is bedded in, there is not much point in invoking Article 50. There will be no-one on the other side of the table, capable of making a decision.

The new prime minister must also decide on whether he (or she) wants the two-year article 50 negotiating period to run into our own general election period. There might be some sense (but also some hazard) in setting the period so that the tail end straddles the election. That way a putative settlement can be part of the election mandate sought.

There are advantages and disadvantages to this, and a national conversation might be appropriate."

Colin Davies said...

Many thanks, Eamon.

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