Camino Diary: Walking The Camino Francais Day Thirteen

DAY THIRTEEN: 21 October 2012 from Santo Domingo Del La Calzada to BeloradoIMAG0902In retrospect Santo Domingo de la Calzada would have been a great place to stay an extra day. The crying tears of the day before continued unremittingly. I could have had a lazy Sunday lunch at the wonderful Parador a former pilgrim’s Hospital with a vestibule of gothic arches and coffered ceilings as well as checking out the chicken coup in the Cathedral which is a daily reminder of a local miracle. The Miracle of the Cock – a little story about a pious young man who resisted the advances of a local maiden. In revenge she set up him for theft. He did indeed survive the gallows and I guess the live fowl are there to protect todays pious young men from the lasciviousness of the local girls or the pilgrim girls for that matter! I suspect the pious young men are a little less pious these days opting to forfeit their charms to the sultry maidens along the way. There is no doubt that the intensity of the Camino facilitates a camaraderie that fosters romance. I know at least one married couple who met on the Camino, two or three others whose intense Camino romances flared and died in the same time that it took undertake the pilgrimmage and there was certainly a sense of romantic hopefulness in the evening gatherings of strangers breaking bread, supping wine and sharing hardships. There are some that say the Camino has become a by word for legitimased stalking. Not a fate that I was aware that befall me and this day to Belorado was one that was drearily unromantic. Plaster white sky, rain sodden sycamore, trudging for the most part along the Sunday quiet N120, ghostly quiet buildings in the background. Belrado dog tired and depressing, the Cuatro Cantones a sodding, sopping little house of steaming pilgrims that ended up in a raucous evening of lentils and a magic bottle that was continually refilled with robust Rioja from under the stairs for the princely sum of 1.50 euros. Just the kind of modern day gathering that could have harboured trickling undercurrents of stirring passions. Oh a little fantasy to rose colour the drip, drip of heavens tears.

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