Camino ~ Villafranca to La Faba

Day 6 … 7th August 2015

Ruben, the volunteer masseuse told me that the albergue I stayed last night started as a farmhouse by the present 70+yo owner Jesus’ grandmother who welcomed pilgrims to rest.

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Twice it was burnt to the ground but Jesus rebuilt it and named it Fenix. It’s staffed by volunteers from all over the world and though everything was basic, the atmosphere was warm.

We were treated to a community dinner and a potent traditional liquor toast for safe journey and everyone went to bed happy.

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This morning, I had the best breakfast so far and felt really energized. Walked non-stop for 22km from 7am till 1pm, and another 3km climb to cool La Faba at 900m.

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Checked into the church albergue with the best bathroom so far.

I must be missing the simple luxuries of hangers in the showers, strong water pressure and toilets that flush properly. Even clothes pegs and linens are such thrills to find.

But when all we need is a flat soft surface to sleep on and a modest place to clean, pilgrims learn not to be choosy.

To be honest, it’s quite an effort keeping up with this blog. The WiFi is usually very poor or non-existent, and power points are hard to get.

When I do get online tapping on my phone with little juice left, I must seem seriously unsociable.

Right. Now I’m going back to my new friends, immerse in the beauty of this country, smell the forest, listen to the distant cow bells, watch the setting of the summer sun, and feel the present here.

Joan Yap

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