Oseira to Laxe (20 miles / 32.00 k ?)
Today was an interesting day, as it started out rather funny. I had my first really exposure to what’s known as a “bag rustler.” I have read and heard stories about them but never really experience one until this morning. Rustlers come from all over the world but the one I heard and saw this morning was a Korean bag rustler
Rustlers are the kind of people that generally like to go to sleep at the alberques at eight or nine, when lights out are usually at ten. They like to go to bed early because they like to get up early, usually two hours or more before the normal time for lights on in the morning, which is generally around seven.
The rustlers like to have every one of the items in their backpack in plastic bags, the ones that make the loudest and most rustling noise, therefore the name Rustler. Now I have my gear in several different nylon zipper storage containers or compression bags. Other than my bottles or containers in my toiletry bag that are in plastic bags, everything else is in those nylon containers.
The rustler started packing each and everyone of his personal items before six, and it went on for over a half hour. I sometimes sleep with ear plugs, but because the room was so massive and there were only four of us spread out away from each other, I didn’t put them in. I happened to be awake anyway as I wanted to get an early start.
I was just laying there wondering how much stuff he must have had to take a half hour to pack into each and every one of those hundreds of plastic bad (I am kiddy of course). What made this even more noticeable was that this huge room has stone walls and a twenty to thirty foot stone ceiling, so the noise was amplified even more.
Then to top it off, the rustler went to the bathroom which is up a little stairway and is separated from the sleeping area by a glazed window. So when the bathroom light is turned on the sleeping area is also lighted. It looks like the bath may have been a place for a choirs when this was a chapel because the acoustics reverberate into the sleeping area from the bathroom. And, you know where I am going with this.
So here at six or so, the rustler coughs and hacks, and blows his nose echoing in the whole room. Of course to add to that he farts nonstop for at least a few minutes to make sure we are all awake. I was actually laughing to myself and thought if I was a writer for a comedy show I’d have a perfect script for a show.
Now all this probably wouldn’t be bad if it was later when everyone was up, or even if there were lots of others there, but at six in the morning!
Ok, I just laughed about it all day and had to write about it. As a matter of fact, the rustler is two beds away from me in this alberque and I am writing this at eight and he is already asleep and snoring. Ear plugs for me tonight!
So that was my first laugh of the day, but I had another not much later after I started out. Yes, as much as I have tried to leaving him behind, Wrong Way Ted showed up again. There are only two days left so he won’t be back too much.
I started to leave at 7:30 and had everything pack but couldn’t find my guide book. It’s funny but I have asked others about it too, and they’ve had the same problem. You would think with so little stuff in just one backpack you’d never loose anything, but you do! After a half hour of pulling everything out and retracing my steps, I finally found it on the bathroom floor where it must have fallen out of my pocket. So much for my early start, but it wouldn’t have mattered anyway.
I started on the Camino right at the monastery and decided that even with my knee I was better off staying on the Camino this morning so I wouldn’t end up on some obscure road with extra miles at the end of the day. I double checked the Camino app but the cell service wasn’t strong and I couldn’t get it to work. I just followed the arrows on the asphalt road and must have lost them in the dark of the morning and because it also started raining.
It was another uphill climb out of Oseira and I remember seeing that the Camino stayed on the road for a long distance. Once I got up a little higher I was able to connect with the cell service and saw that the Camino had turned off the road quite a distance back towards town. Google Maps showed several roads going the same way and with similar distances, so I decided to go by the roads. That was a big mistake!
At first it seemed a well traveled road, fairly wide and well paved. Then it turned into a very narrow road, and almost looking abandoned because it was so bad. I know better than to trust Google Maps at home, so here in Spain it’s got to be worse, and it was. It gave me directions to turn to my left and right, when there was no place to turn to. At times the live dot that represents me on the map was completely away from the road I was just on minutes ago. I am not sure if it was a bad program or just a break in the reception? Originally the road Google had shown me was one continuous road, but it had me turning on other roads. At one point the road narrowed down to what I thought was a very narrow alley between houses.
I couldn’t believe that I got myself into something like this a second day in a row, and with only three days left on the Camino. The Camino app didn’t help because it showed that the Camino was pretty far away.
It was about 12:30 when I came across an actual Camino arrow! Wow, was I glade! That was just before the town of Castro Dozon. At that point I stayed on the Camino, used the Camino app, and was very vigilant about watching out for the directional arrows. The Camino really isn’t this hard but it has been my concern about my knee that has gotten me to take alternate ways.
Just outside Castro Donzon the Camino moved onto the frontage road, N-525, which use to be the main road and now parallels the new freeway. It was also the first time that it stopped raining, so it was an extra bonus.
The Camino stayed on the road through Castro Donzon and for about three or four miles after that and I was loving it. The road is wide, with a very wide shoulder, and with little to no traffic in that area. When the Camino did move off the road, I just stayed on the road as it actually moved back onto the road several times.
I had hoped to find a hotel or a cassa rural in Laxe, and I didn’t have any luck. I saw a big hotel just outside of town but they were full. At that point it was after five and I knew there was at least a municiple alberque there. I was happy when I finally found it and it was a fairly nice one.
There five of us here, the Korean and Russian from last night, and so was Mikio. There is one young Spanish man here too.
There is not much here as it is a very small spread out town and luckily there was a bar on the road that was open for diner. I went there and had a nice meal with the Russian and Korean.
Tomorrow is the second to last day, and it is suppose to be a short one at about sixteen miles. That is, if I don’t get lost? It is raining very hard now and it is going to rain all day tomorrow too. Hopefully it won’t be an issue. I am thinking positive, and it should be a good day!
On the Camino. Can’t you tell by the arrow? Santiago 81 kilometers, only 38 miles.