Day 5

“If you believe in yourself and have the courage, the determination, the dedication, the competitive drive and you are willing to sacrifice the little things in life and pay the price for the things that are worthwhile, it can be done.”

……. Vince Lombardi

Day 5 : Wednesday 10th October 2012

Earlier start to the day at 6am in order to get myself sorted out. It’s taking me almost an hour to have a quick wash, tend to my blisters, “plaster” them, massage my calfs with that magical cream Voltarol, rub my feet with Vaseline (it works!) strap my knees with “rodilleras” and then get changed. I must admit the worst bit, other than checking and rechecking, is putting the boots back on early in the morning. It’s absolute murder as I try to wriggle my toes into them, hoping that socks, boots and toes fit snugly into position.

Given my anticipated earlier start at 7am it was annoying once again to be delayed as I waited for my bill to be processed at this ungodly hour. Perhaps I should have sorted that out the previous night but frankly after having drank a half a bottle of an award winning wine and consumed the fine Galician food, I was in no state to attend to money matters. It was simply time for lights out and a good night sleep!

Unfortunately sleep did not come easy, in fact I slept little, two or three hours the most! Perhaps some apprehension creeping in ; I don’t know but I was not going to let that bother me.

Today’s walk was by far the shortest, approximately 18 km all the way to Rua, but more specifically to O Pino where my next rest place was located. As has been the case over the past few days and contrary to my own instincts I set off at a moderate to fast pace ignoring the slight pain I was feeling in my toes. I knew that after a while I would grow accustomed to it so there was no point in slowing down.

Due to the delay I set off at about 7.40am. It was still very dark and with only my lamp to guide me I strode off into the woods! After a while and at a distance, I could already make out the silhouette of Ricardo and his dog, who I later accompanied for a couple of Kms. Prior to that and for almost 6km I walked alongside a spritely old lady who kept on walking relentlessly without uttering a single word the whole time. That was fine by me because at that pace I couldn’t possibly have engaged in any conversation at all.

After this spell of approx 7kms with both Ricardo and “old lady” and a brief “descanso” I set off on my own for the rest of the walk. It was absolute bliss. The weather so far had been kind and the walk across woodland, farms and roadside paths which verged on woods was a joy especially as the terrain was much flatter and the path more “sandy”. This is especially comforting because walking on tarmac or cobbled and stony paths was playing havoc with my feet.

However after a reassuring start my feet began to feel the effects of the wear and tear that all these kms was causing my feet. I have to say that walkers who get no blisters must be the luckiest peregrinos. As for me not only were the blisters coming into play but I was also getting cramps in my right foot. This could well have been caused by my initial pace and so I therefore decided to slow down dramatically and I must have covered very little in the last hour. Having to go slower should have been my cue to take in the surroundings but the pain was becoming more excruciating to the point that I had to stretch and curl my toes periodically to ameliorate the discomfort.

As far as the todays scenery, I would venture to admit that it has been the best. I have quite enjoyed walking in the woods. It offers a sense solitude where only nature in its wildest form exists. There are, for example, no interruptions of car noise which in a way sometimes spoils the tranquility that you crave for. Nevertheless today’s trek cut across and seen some fine looking arable lands, corn fields, chestnut tree lined paths, narrow winding country lanes, quaint looking houses , some farms and to my detriment some roads and cobbled paths!

Today’s walk took just over 4hours (4 hours and 15-20 mins) and it was gratifying to find a well placed hotel which came highly recommended.

I had hoped that today’s walk would have been an “easy” one where I could recover a bit but unfortunately it has once again made me rethink tomorrow’s strategy as we make our final push to Santiago in what will be, according to the weather forecast, a very, very wet day!!!


12 Responses to Day 5

  1. Geraldine says:

    Animo for tomorrow. Hope your feet feel better after today rest. Buen camino.

  2. Joyce Diaz says:

    Take strength from Philip’s words to us, as he lay paralysed with pain and we were wild with grief : ” Don’t look so worried, pain is temporary, glory is forever.”

    The feet will heal and the cramps will ease but nothing can take away from you the deep joy and satisfaction of having done this for him.

    Your boys and I love you and we are very proud of you.


  3. pizzaman21 says:

    Water is the essence of life, what more do you want? You are getting an abundant supply, fresh as fresh can be and, at no charge!! Just look up, open your mouth and drink, strip off, apply some shower gel and walk naked for a bit, it’ll be great!!!

    I would be interested in reading/hearing, on your return, your in-depth assessment of hiking with a poncho, for future reference!

    You should, by now, have managed to sort out your optimum walking pace and stick to it. You will have now realised, the hard way, that trying to go too fast is not a good idea. Did I tell you about Naismith? Maybe not!

    Anyway he was a Scottish mountaineer who came up with this formula for hiking namely, “Allow 1 hour for every 3 miles (5 km) forward, plus Β½ hour for every 1000 feet (300 metres) of ascent. In deep Scottish accent of course”. Anyway that’s for a reasonably fit adult and with best conditions but Google it for the full spiel! Basically, it’s not a race it’s a walk (in the park, hahahaha!!!).

    Anyway, you’ll be fine tomorrow and I can guarantee that you will say at the end that you could carry on for more! If you do mine’s a bottle of that Galician wine πŸ™‚

    I will be doing this myself at some point so you can have a laugh at my expense at some point.

    For the moment just keep setting target points on your route and that way it’s not about trying to achieve long distances but manageable portions so that mentally it feels better.

    Buen camino!!

    Tu primo, Michael

    • ediazblog says:

      Apply some gel and walk naked for a bit…..lololol…..if only I could, mind you I wouldn’t want to put any peregrino off!! There does seem to be some wet tshirts about…not that I’m looking. πŸ˜‰

      Re: Naismith… You forgot!! You gave me a good two hours induction course on hiking and you left out the important bit about not walking fast…..I’ll expect a refund ..lololol

      My biggest problem I think is the weight I’m carrying, it’s just too much. I may also have to invest in a good smart phone should I decide to do this again and no sleeping bag, towel etc….all rest places, read that as private hostels cater for all this, even washing clothes!!

      But I suppose you live and learn!!

      Re: the poncho, no comment, just dreading it tomorrow… πŸ™‚

  4. Corinne says:

    Hi Eddie, am thoroughly enjoying reading your daily blogs. Keep at it, you’re almost there….. It feels as though we are there too, the way you describe it all! Loving it! Buen Camino. xxx

  5. Sir Arthur Wellesley says:

    We lost Sir John Moore at La Coruna, I rode roughshod over Napoleon throughout the whole peninsula, Portugal included, and you, King Edward Joseph the Lion Heart, are now on the verge of conquering Santiago De Compostela! Prepare your strategy properly and forward towards the Great Cathedral! You will triumph!

    Just a thought: ‘We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience’

    Pierre Teilhard De Chardin

  6. ediazblog says:

    Thanks, one more to go…….or maybe continue to Finisterre
    ….just a thought!!

  7. Malu Medhurst says:

    “We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.”
    – Kenji Miyazawa
    Take one step at a time, little bro! Your son has taught you well. Sleep well tonight! Lots of love Malu xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  8. Robert peliza says:

    Hi Eddie,

    Having read yiour blog brings back my experiences (blisters, cramos and all) of the two Caminos that I did, I hope that you had a good rest at the O’pino hotel. Yes the scenary along the walks are great, though as you say, this can sometimes be marred by the galician weather. Keep strong and keep going and it will all be worth it when you reach Santiago.
    Perhaps on your return we can meet and relate our experineces over good pint. By the way, try the ‘Manzanova Cider’ its great and I am not a cider drinker.

    Buen Camino.


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