Mon 5 Oct - Day 21: Calzadilla de la Cueza to Terradillos de Los Templarios 10km

401km walked. 384km left to walk. 

Wet and windy conditions are forecast for today again. No need to rush in the morning so here are a few pics of albergue living. In the one horse town of Calzadilla de la Cueza at the albergue Camino Real. Today will be a short walk. 

Here is a photo as I was inside my sleeping bag. Which is very comfy and cozy by the way. 

The sight of an upper bunk from below has become an increasingly familiar sight. 
The view from my bottom bunk bed out over the floor of bund beds. The also familiar sight of stuff everywhere. 
The rules and instructions from this Albergue Camino Real. 
In Spanish and sort of English. Lots of words, underline, bold, italic...
At 8am, the hospitalero walked the floor and told us the male pilgrims to be gone by... 8am. The female pilgrims were given another half hour until 8.30am. Hmmm...

Still, I was not out of the albergue until almost 8.30am. Why rush?

A few more pics from the albergue's facilities. 
The resident budgie in a cage that was hanging from an angle. 
On a warm and nice day, the pool would have been very enticing. Today was definitely not one of those days. 
Albergue Camino Real from the front. Some lovely murals there. Sleeping quarters were on the first floor. 
Who is looking out from the bathroom window? That would be Marg. 
The first pit stop today was the town's one and only combined bar and restaurant. A couple of hundred meters down the road from the albergue. For rain and wind cover, coffee and wifi. 

This is a Japanese way of not getting your boots / shoes wet. Wrap them in plastic bags. I wondered about how that would affect the actual walking...
Well, the Japanese guy may need that boot protection and a lot more if he was going out in this... Which he was. 
What can the rest of us do? Wait! Well, it is what it is and it ain't what it ain't. Patience...
At around 9.30am, the rain had actually subsided and the wind had also died down so I was on my way. Lots of puddles and very wet ground. No surprises there. Walking speed was not fast as one had to negotiate the water and mud. 
Which way from here? Hmm...
Stopping at Terradillos de Los Templarios were only me and Ben. The girls continued to the town of Sahagun. Aaron and Sophie arrived at our albergue later by sheer chance. 

Anyway, the weather forecast for the afternoon was for strong winds and I wanted to bunk down. 10km to Terradillos de Los Templarios rather than 6km and a bit to Lodigos was all I was prepare to increase today. 

The Jacques de Molay albergue in Terradillos de Los Templarios (or T-town as I soon called it) was a quirky little place. A kind of one stop shop with a mini mercado and a pharmacy on the premises, in addition to the bar and restaurant. 
Crap wifi / internet access yet again. In fact, the mobile connected to the wifi but didn't do anything. 

I must have reached a Spanish Internet black hole as there were several stops ago since wifi was any good (or existed in the first place). 

I had to get some supplies so a visit to the mini mercado was warranted. 

If you required toothpaste, sunscreen and soap, which I did, they were all locked up inside this cabinet. 
Sun screen is as expensive in Spain as it is in France. 7€ for this little tube. 
I managed to lose the sunscreen tube that I bought in Paris a few albergues ago. So had to get another one. 

Ben and I had lunch in the albergue restaurant. 
Hamburger with the lot, Spanish style. The burger had fried egg, bacon, cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion but was sadly missing both beetroot and pineapple. 

Still, pretty tasty for 5€. 
Spanish sugar sachet. The Spanish word for sugar in a variety of fonts. Looked good. 
I wandered through town in the mid afternoon and that took several minutes. Yes, Terradillos de Los Templarios was another one horse town. Perhaps the same horse as the last one...

Still, a few interesting street scapes. 
I didn't think that houses were still built by mud and sticks but clearly here they still are. Quite a few buildings were built that way. 

A very lazy afternoon followed. A nap. Reading. Good through photographs. Planning and looking at subsequent Camino stages. Very relaxing in fact. 

I am now clearly more than half way to Santiago de Compostela. My Camino guide book says that 17 of the 33 stages have been completed and the altitude maps from the Pilgrim Office in St Jean Pied de Port has it as 18 out of 34 suggested stages. That felt good to know. 

It looks like Leon should be reachable in 3 days, around 70km from Terradillos de Los Templarios where I am now. That is, if the weather is favorable for the next couple of days. 

The terrain is also flat to Leon and 2 days beyond to Astorga. Then there are 2 big hills to conquer as the Camino is getting into Galicia. There are 3 mountains in total on Camino Frances including the Pyrenees.

A few thoughts on the wifi and Internet which in my view really is a double edged sword. 

On one hand, most pilgrims including myself look out for it, use it and embrace it. In fact, albergues without wifi, in particular where there are other nearby albergues with wifi, would probably struggle to attract the pilgrims. Of course, the Internet is very useful to get the latest up to date weather forecasts. 

On the other hand, technology does take away something from the experience. I am sure that there would be more interactions between pilgrims and we would talk more and learn more from each other without it. I feel that the "outside" world could and kind of interferes with the Camino experience as we all tap away. 

Anyway, wifi and technology is probably there to stay. It will not go away as the world is getting more and more connected. And that goes or the Camino as well. 

A couple of glasses of Vino Tinto and I was back in the room ready to sleep before 9pm. Yes, most pilgrims seem to spend a lot of time in their sleeping bag. Presumably tired after a long slog of walking followed by food and wine. Oh well, as Jason Bourne said "rest is a weapon". 

One more pic before we go. The Spanish "building code" of non 90 degrees angles. I've seen them in quite a few places, even what looks like newer buildings. Or maybe they are not. Anyway here is the ceiling of the bedroom. 

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