The rooster woke me up for this beautiful sunrise. I took my coffee outside and enjoyed the morning light.
At 8 we turned the mattress room back to a yoga room and practiced yoga, chanted and meditated in the barnyard on a mountain in rural Spain.
It was just a short walk through the morning mist to the highest point on the Camino and an important pilgrim milestone–the Crux de Ferro.
This spot has been sacred since pre-Celtic times and was originally dedicated to Mercury. The tradition is to carry a rock from home and leave it at the cross signifying the emotional and spiritual burdens that the pilgrim no longer wants to carry. It is and emotional moment for pilgrims and one of great reverence. There are memorials to friends and family, rocks with names, flowers and other small tokens covering the mound. Alexandra and I added our stones from home, one for a friend and two from Egypt. I walked the small stone labyrinth near the cross. We met some young men carrying a giant white teddy bear to Santiago to raise money for charity.
A drizzly rain fell for the next few miles and the fog kept us from seeing the views but the path was beautiful with low flowering bushes. Since we had made it to the top of the mountain it meant that today was all downhill and one of the most difficult walking days on the Camino. We took our time on the slippery, rocky path and were happy to take a big break for lunch.
After lunch the rain stopped and we dried out a bit. The path was still very steep and rocky but the mountains sage and other flowers mixed with the cool breeze to make incense almost like frankincense. I stopped frequently to let my tired legs rest and just enjoy the smell and the beauty.
We finally got to our destination which was a picture postcard village of Molinaseca with balconies and flowers along an enchanting central street. A much deserved dinner and drink with other tired pilgrims and then bedtime. There is rarely any trouble sleeping after a long day of walking unless you get a bunk next to a world class snorer.