Sunday, May 23, 2010
My German friend, whose name I do not know, and I have planned an early rise so as to avoid the extreme heat. The climb will take us from 640 meters to 1337 meters. Despite my improved condition from the day before, he is not in such good shape. He tells me that yesterday he had experienced nausea and, despite the high temperature, cold sweats. These are some of the symptoms of heatstroke. Despite this, and his 71 years, he sets out at a rapid pace that soon leaves me way behind. I think this is potentially harmful. Along with the poor choice of foods that he wishes to take with him, I realise that this is his camino and I have no responsibility for his well-being. So far, I have not seen him again.
I have decided that I will not make the same mistake of attempting both the ascent and descent all in one day. So I travel only 23.5 kilometers to Fonfria. Today, again I started my walk in the dark at 6.00 a.m. I choose not to take breakfast until I feel that I have made sufficient inroads into my journey. The 9 kilometer descent was extremely challenging and by 9 a.m. when I reach Triacastela at 675 metres, I am already tired. By this time already, the sun is quite high.
It seems that at my destination point today of Sarria, there are many pilgrims who join the camino to complete the last 100 kilometers. As a result, accommodation tends to get booked up. I have had to make a reservation for where I will stay tonight. This has meant that I have had to arrive at my destination by 3 p.m. This has been quite a challenge in this heat to cover the distance of 31 kilometers.