Tuesday Sept 8 – Day 5
I knew I didn’t have very far to go today, so I slept in a bit. The 3 French ladies who shared a room were still there, so I asked them if they could reserve my next room for me. They did it in front of me, and everything was all good!
I got on the road about 9 am. It was another day of all ups and downs. The scenery is definitely changing. I don’t really know what to compare it to in the states. The area I’m going through now seems to be a bit drier, and not as green. It was also noticeably warmer. 54º. I was quite hot in my longsleeve shirt.
I stopped in St. Alban sur-Limagnole to get some food. The tourism office is in an old castle, but I didn’t have to actually talk to anyone. The map outside was good enough for my needs. I found a little store and bought some bread, sausage, and cheese, and two croissants. It doesn’t seem fair that you can buy a big thing of French cheese for 1.5 E!
It was a fairly steep climb up the mountain from St.
Alban. At the top of the hill, a woman had her shoes off and was nursing her blisters. I’m very grateful I’ve had no blisters! Besides the one on my hand from my walking poles. And I’m still not sure if I like them. Today my wrist was really hurting. I don’t think it’s very good for carpal tunel.
I was thinking this morning as I was walking that I felt really good. I have not had any issues with anything, really. My pack is great, my shoes are awesome, and my legs are champs. I’ve also been impressed with how little I’ve had to stop on the uphills. I was always very athletic as a child, so maybe it’s all muscle memory, and a bit of that cross country training. Power up the hills! It is definitely a physical experience. It’s not an easy walk, and I’m so grateful that I am healthy enough to do it.
I’ve discovered that some churches have a self serve passport stamp sitting near the entrance. It makes me wonder if I’ve missed any along the way. I’ve decided that I want lots of stamps, which means that I’ll need multiple passports.
It was another very sunny day, and I made sure to put extra sunscreen on, and I wore my visor for the first time.
I decided to stop at the top of a mountain for lunch. A horse kept me company for a while.
When I got back up after lunch, that’s when the pain started. My legs and feet were just really sore, and it took a while to get back into a good pace and rhythm. I was glad I wasn’t going so far today. My calves are very tight.
I got into Aumont-Aubrac, and went to see the church before checking into my gite.
Pictures around town, Aumont-Aubrac.
I’m staying in Gîte d’étape La Ferme du Barry, on a recommendation from the Camino forum. Apparently this guy is an expert at making aligot, which is a regional specialty.
I’m in a 4 person room, and I have 3 roommates. Nicholas from France, who does speak English, Kyoko from Tokyo, who also speaks English, and Iain from Melbourne, who only speaks English.
Dinner was amazing!! We went down a bit early to try to connect to the wifi, but it wasn’t working. I got to watch the host, Vincent, slice the huge block of cheese in preparation for making his famous aligot.
Dinner was served family style. The first course was a green salad with pickled vegetables in it. Then the famous aligot, which is a regional dish of mashed potatoes, cheese, garlic, cream, salt and pepper. It kind of reminded me of a fondue. He makes a bit show of serving it. It was quite entertaining. Then the main course was some beef and carrots, which was very delicious as well. Dessert was some kind of cake with a cold fruit puree. I’m not a huge fan of “cake” here, which is very wet. But I eat everything of everything, and most things are very good. I need all the fuel I can get.