Below: By the second week, we had grown accustomed to French Camino breakfasts. You’d expect the French, known as they are for their excellent cuisine, to prepare delicious breakfasts (croissants, cafés au lait, etc.), but nope! Below is very typical of what we we ate each morning: toast (or maybe yesterday’s dry, hard baguette), a bowl of greasy black coffee, and some orange juice. Try walking the 10 or 15 kilometers before lunch on that! It became something of a joke after a while, especially the ridiculous bowls of coffee. And while the breakfasts were meager, the dinners certainly lived up to our expectations and were very filling.

Below: Ori and Emmanuel (“Manu”) on the road.

Below: Manu tries to tame a chicken.

Below: A typical scene on the second week of our Camino. Manu communes with the animals, Ori perseveres despite her blisters, another pilgrim wears a makeshift turban to keep the sun off, spring is well underway, and the sun shines.

Below: Arriving in Conques, a traditional intermediate point of pilgrimage on the way to Santiago (due to its abbey church of Sainte Foy a.k.a. Saint Faith a.k.a. Santa Fe). Conques is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the entire town (much like Venice) consists of well-preserved traditional architecture; also like Venice, it looked good from every angle. Another unfortunate similarity was that there was little economy there beyond the businesses that cater to tourists. There wasn’t even a place to buy groceries! It was also our first experience with a really big gîte full of snoring pilgrims (and cold showers). Conques is beautiful, but staying there overnight isn’t recommended.

Below: The fantastic tympanum of the abbey church of Sainte-Foy in Conques. Near the bottom, an example of a common medieval theme: you can go left through the door of heaven (with angels and musical instruments), or you can go right into the mouth of hell (with demons and instruments of torture). A nice reminder to pilgrims about why they were doing it!

Comments are closed.