Portomarin to Palas de Rai

Although warned ahead of time that Spaniards don’t do big breakfasts and we’d likely just get continental fare at our hotels, we’ve been pleasantly surprised. Today we though the bun with cream cheese and jam and the cafe con leche was it. Then she brought out the ham, cheese, yogurt and fruit. Needless to say that was plenty to keep us going for a while.

We’re already getting lazy and it was almost 9 am before we hit the road. Mind you, the sun doesn’t come up till about 8:30 so there’s no point in going early. Today’s hike was to total about 25 km and the the first 15 km was all uphill.  There were a few steep grades but for the most part it was just a gradual incline.

Again we were blessed with beautiful weather. It started to drizzle at one point enough that I got out my poncho but it didn’t last long. The sun even peeked out a few times. I rolled my pants up and removed layers till I was down to a tank top. Not bad for halloween!

Leaving Potomarin, the view from the other side of the river. There aren't many lawns but lots of gardens.

Leaving Potomarin, the view from the other side of the river. There aren’t many lawns but lots of gardens.

La vista es magnifico!

La vista es magnifico!

Which way?

Which way?

Just hanging around

Just hanging around

Every village has a church

Every village has a church

Pretty steps

Pretty steps

Not many travellers this time of year

Not many travellers this time of year

Often the trail was beside a major highway but it wasn’t busy so the road noise wasn’t that bad. We passed through a lot of farms and small villages and the air was filled with various odours of “fresh” country air. There seemed to be one cow that went a long way with a bad case of diarrhoea. Passing the processing plant was really smelly.

Again we met lots of different people of varying ages and nationalities. We admired some mushrooms and a couple of young ladies joined us and showed the bag of mushrooms they’d been collecting for dinner. They even had some porcini mushrooms! Yum!  Locals often greeted us with a “buen Camino”. There were also many times we were totally alone on the trail. The walk was altogether a relaxing, pleasant and physically tiring trek.

We took a few detours here and there when something appeared interesting like a grave yard, church, funny looking truck or a mushroom or two.

Around 4 pm we finally arrived in Palas de Rai, a small town that we still managed to get lost in. Again we asked a local where the Pension Paradellas was and found we were mere steps away. The man at the desk was very friendly and took us to the 3rd floor. Our room was the only one. It had 3 beds in a row and a wall of windows to a balcony. Beautiful! A little while later he came back and showed me his cell phone. It said “teach them where to find breakfast”. Awesome. Through our limited Spanish and his sparse English we managed to converse and even joke around.

We settled in, took a wonderfully refreshing shower and relaxed until 7ish which is a reasonable time for a Spanish person to eat dinner. I had researched dinner options and came up with a pulperia (pulpa is octopus) as Galicia is famous for octopus so we must eat it. It was only supposed to be a 2 minute walk but of course we got lost. You have to see these streets to understand why. There’s no rhyme or reason. Nothing’s straight. So, again we asked a local  “donde pulperia?” and managed to understand his Spanish enough to get there. Yay US!

Our waiter didn’t speak English and was very amusing. Sue wanted steak and he warned her it was a lot of meat. Anita got the octopus and I got clams. We all decided we needed veggies so got a simple salad. It was simple but HUGE. Even though we helped, Sue couldn’t finish the steak. Our waiter acted disgusted. We finished the carafe of wine and Sue wanted another glass. When she was adamant she didn’t want another carafe, or even half a carafe, JUST a glass. Again he was disgusted. When we said no to dessert he acted fed up. Too funny!

Sue had brought some funky light up halloween pins that we then gave to a couple of kids at a table nearby. They were thrilled and their mother had them say thank you in English. Very cute 🙂

We staggered back to the hotel. Well, I staggered. 2 glasses of wine is a lot for me. Besides, it was a long day. My garmin said I walked over 41,000 steps and 30 km. 😀

Yummy octopus (pulpa)

Yummy octopus (pulpa)

Yummy clams

Yummy clams

The

The “simple” salad

IMG_8095_pe IMG_8091_pe IMG_8085_pe

Funny looking tractors

Funny looking tractors

Pretty mushrooms!

Pretty mushrooms!

Sunset view from our room in Palas de Rai

Sunset view from our room in Palas de Rai

Doesn't that look like a fishing bobber on the water tower?

Doesn’t that look like a fishing bobber on the water tower?

68 km to Santiago de Compostela. The stick says go that way....

68 km to Santiago de Compostela. The stick says go that way….

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