Camino day 8: Into Spain

This carving was one of the first we saw in Spain, beside a Roman bridge. We crossed the border over the river on a (newer) bridge built by Eiffel ( yes he does a nice line in towers too) between the two small medieval cities of Valenca (Portuguese) and Tui (Spanish). Rural Portugal has been like stepping back 50 years, with sections which feel like 500 years ago. In the little medieval city of Valenca we climbed down steps into narrow dark passages through the old walls walked by pilgrims since the 13th century. Very spine tingling! Over the bridge and on  into Spain, we were back into 2017 with a vengeance. The biggest industrial estate in the entire history of pilgrimage gave us 2 hours of very hot dusty walking with the pungent smell of rotting fish from the waste recycling plant. Noel suggested that one of the metaphors of the journey is that you don’t get to pick and choose. If the road goes through flower meadows that’s how it is. If through a smelly industrial area ditto. Your only choice is how you respond. We responded by playing Ispy and 20 questions (Noel says for age 7 and under). The church of St James, Noel’s blister, Noels rosary and our friend Victoria were all sucessfully guessed.  We arrived tired but glad to put our feet up in the town of Porrino. We had walked 27 km today, Clare’s furthest distance yet. 


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