15.07.14 Tuesday Baamonde to A Roxica. Via Miraz.
We know this is a difficult stretch The total distance to the next town Sobrado is 40km a distance walked by some but not by us on this trip. It is across an area of Gallician upland with a fairly sparse population. We set off early in common with most of the alburgue and after coffee and totados next door (they open at 6.30) are soon bowling along farm tracks and small metalled roads. We cross several bridges non of particular antiquity. Strangely mid morning we find a cafe signposted 179m off route. Betsy reckons its 200 but we are not complaining about second breakfasts. We learn today of plans to alter the route of the csmino and its fierce local opposition by the local community along the Way. It would be a pity if this change missed out on this lovely and remote bit of Gallicia. We rise up slightly to Miraz where an alburgue is run by the British, Confraternity of St James. They are not yet open this is a short day st 18km but John and his two co hospitaleros open the door and chat about this very small alburgue we hope to stay in. John is clearly concerned that he will not have enough beds and hates turning away those who really need to stop there. He tells us of a small private alburgue a further 10km along the route who might allow camping and has 8 beds. We agree we are perfectly capable of reaching there and he rings to check and reserve beds. We are all very happy with this arrangement even though the temptation to stay talking with them all is great. The road soon becomes a track over gritstone upland like the dark peak south of Sheffield but with Gallician dry stone walls alternatinf large flat rocks set upright with small rocks to fill in.
This is a lovely stretch of countryside and all to spon we rejoin a minor road that leads past a few small farms and to A Roxica where the lady of the farmhouse has decided to take in pilgrims. There are two rooms with 4 bunks in each. New and clean and a little bar serving meals and drinks. We settle in and hang out washing in the afternoon sun. A bottle of wine is available with the lunch we have with us. The rooms are donativo. We probably identify Montagues Harrier wheeling above us and the young bitch who stole Tonys insole that was out to air comes to apologise and beg ham.
A very pleasant and less strenuous than advertised 26km and 500m up 400m down.
A lazy afternoon watching others go past with 16km to go in the afternoon heat, making friends with the 6mth old dog who Is a bit shy and looking at the black refstarts feeding their youg in the nest in the bar porch. Betsy’s blister is improving and the day slowly cools too a seven oclock meal of Caldo and meat stew with pototoes. Postres is a choice most have the very mild whey cheese with quince jelly. All comes from the farm