Today started nicely, with a very good sleep last night in our private room in Ventas. During our morning walk, we joked about how people who are unable to speak Spanish seem to shout to compensate (“volume makes multi-linguists of us all” – Ori).

Last night, we discovered one downside to using stainless steel water bottles. As I poured out the stale water left over from the day’s walk, I noticed it was brown; we’d both been drinking it all day and hadn’t noticed. I don’t know if it was due to rusty plumbing, or the road construction in the next town (see photo below), but it wasn’t a pleasant discovery.

Below: Here we are, walking through Ligonde (Street View) with the main road torn up for construction. This dog looked very hyena-like!

Below: Santiago draws ever closer.

Below: Some older hórreos along the way. Again, note how they’re designed to keep rats and other rodents from climbing up and eating the grain.

Unfortunately, our Camino took an unexpected turn for the worse this afternoon. As we were walking, Ori began to have stomach pains, and they kept getting worse.

Below: They got so bad that I had to take both backpacks. I carried them both for about four kilometers until Ori couldn’t walk any further.

While we were stopped by the side of the road to assess the situation, a jerk-pilgrim walked by and yelled “¡Vamos!” at us, which didn’t help matters at all. Then Ori started throwing up in the bushes, and not knowing enough Spanish to call a taxi (not that we knew any taxi phone numbers), I called a hotel in Melide – five kilometers away – and asked them to book us a room and call us a cab ASAP. It was a horrible feeling of helplessness.

Too proud to break my streak of having walked the entire way so far, I put Ori in the taxi and kept walking to Melide. By the time I arrived, Ori had speedily checked into the hotel (the manager could see how green she was) and was in the bathroom, not having a good time at all. She couldn’t keep anything down, not even water, and I was worried she’d get dehydrated.

Eventually, things settled down enough that I could leave her unattended, so I went and got some medicine from a pharmacist, with whom I communicated using some rather graphic gesturing and “barfing” sounds (not shouting!). Then I went to the Froiz supermarket and got as many “gentle” foods as I could: apple juice, rice cakes, magdalenas (basic white muffins), and the like. The medicine seemed to help, but we decided we weren’t going anywhere tomorrow, so we scheduled ourselves an unplanned rest day in Melide.

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