Sunday, 26 April 2009
We felt better. We realized we won´t be able to do this again for a LONG time. So on Thursday we packed a bag and ran away.
First we ran back up the Camino del Salvador, and stayed at the delicious B&B at Poladura de Tercia, in the Leonese mountains where I stayed in March, when I was walking the trail. This time, with the snow all gone and the mud dried up, it was practically a BREEZE hiking up to the first pass. I learned since then that first big mountain is called "El Coito," and impotent men who climb it are supposed to experience miraculous recoveries. I wonder what this might do to raise the profile of this particular camino? (Seeing as we were still not feeling 100%, I was glad just to survive!)
Lots of horses running free up there, many with beautiful new foals.
The following day we headed north to Oviedo. We stopped at Sta. Cristina de Leña, site of the Magic Picnic. This time we got to see inside! It is simple and beautiful, like lace, but made of stone and light. It´s 1,200 years old. How I love old things!
More of the same up in Oviedo, the capital city of Asturias. It is a beautiful, civilized, walkable town with a great self-image. We stayed at a great-value little hotel with a view over the botanical garden. We ate amazing cheese and sea urchins and squid in its ink, and we sipped apple cider poured from great heights, as is the wont of Asturians. And we saw much art, and MORE thousand-year-old pre-Romanesque churches on pristine green lawns with hundred-mile views into the mountains. We sat at the sunny sidewalk café and drank Negronis and watched the town strolling by. We drove back through the mountains via Covadonga, another 10th-century relic of Asturian nationalism and Catholic fervor: a sort of Lourdes-Valley of the Fallen admixture with lots of falling water and stony caves and altar boys.
We took it easy. We refreshed. We enjoyed one another´s company. Here are some photos.