Walking West – Satisfaction

Day 21 – Valverde de la Virgen to Villares de Órbigo, 15.19 miles

Sunrise again, happens every day.
Morning staples in Villadangos del Paramo.
The bridge into Hospital de Órbigo.
Albergue El Encanto in Villares de Órbigo.
Afternoon staples in Villares de Órbigo.

There’s not much to say about the walk today, every step is alongside the highway. I only saw a few pilgrims scattered over the miles, and I didn’t have any interactions until I reached my albergue in Villares de Órbigo. Not every place on the Camino is visually stunning and not every day is packed with meaningful experiences, but still satisfaction is found in these simple days.

One thing I’ve done differently on this Camino is listen to music while walking alone. I still enjoy silence and the sounds of nature, but today, my playlist got a workout.

Here’s a bonus Pilgrim tip from me – The Ramones provide the best soundtrack for these long highway walks or the long uphill treks. The fast tempo and fun lyrics make the time fly by. I was reminded today that one of their songs contains one of the greatest lines in all music history:

“Now I guess I’ll have to tell’um that I’ve got no cerebellum.” – Teenage Lobotomy

In Hospital de Órbigo, I diverted off the traditional highway path and took the alternative gravel road to Villares de Órbigo, my destination for the day. I stayed at the Albergue El Encanto; it was another fantastic, off-stage albergue. After checking in and arranging for machine-washed laundry, I walked into the heart of Villares for refreshments and exploration.

The highlight of the day came at the Pilgrim Dinner back at the Albergue El Encanto. There were 9 of us at the table representing 5 different countries and 4 continents. The conversations about our reasons for the Camino and experiences thus far were rich. There were a couple of stories that were very compelling and would become a part of my pilgrimage in the days to come.

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