The Meseta means different things to different people. For some it is a challenge, a wasteland that must be endured to reach the goal of Santiago. For others the barren wasteland look caused by the hot dry summer brings its own beauty. Others avoid it as a boring barren section that can be bypassed to more beautiful and interesting sections of the Camino.
For me, I had the privilege of seeing the Meseta as it is rarely seen in Summer. Rain has fallen up until recently, producing a lush and beautiful landscape. The green vista that stretched before me laced with the wild flowers dominated by the red of the poppies, was stunning. It was a pleasure to walk there.
I imagine the landscape will change again very shortly as the temperatures have started to climb.
These scenes were not the only surprises today. Tonight’s stop was an albergue in the ruins of the monastery of St Anton. Built in the 16th century and abandoned in the mid 1800s the remains are still very impressive. The albergue is a “donativo” one which means there is no set charge but you give a donation. There is no electricity therefore no hot water. The two hospitaleros ( Guy from South Africa and Oliver from Germany) provided a wonderful welcome and meal. Then to surprise us all, including them, a man turned up after dinner and played an impromptu concert amongst the ruins. Click on the picture of the guitarist to here some of the music – including the farm dog next door!
The music capped off a magical day.
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