|On the road...|
There is also a "very" significant amount of tar road as you complete the last stage toward Zamora and into Zamora itself. I have made notes of these changes (which I will add at the relevant stage of the walk) in the blogs that follow. For anyone considering walking the Levante route I would suggest reading through the blogs relating to Rielves to Zamora in order to check out the information but the areas to watch out for are the following:
- Around Barcience
- After Vl de Santo Domingo near Maqueda
- Shortly before entering Escalona
- Around San Martín de Valdeiglesias
- From Cebreros to San Bartolmé de Pinares
- Outside of Ávila on the way to Narrillos
- Around and before Cardeñosa
- A HUGE change and the chance of a lot of confusion leaving Arévalo
- No municipal accommodation at the convent in Nava del Rey
- Before Siete Iglesias de Trabancos
- Leaving Castronuño
- After Villalazán and heading into Zamora
Day 1 - 10km to Rielves:
However, on arrival at our start point - 10km before Rielves - all the above "trouble spots" were unknown and lay ahead of us, yet to be encountered and dealt with!
Traveling with us up to Rielves was Cressa, a foster dog who had only been with us for a few weeks. She had previously been a little car sick, mostly through stress, and was not used to the routine of driving somewhere for walks. We had been doing some preparation with her, driving out to do fun things and coming home, teaching her not to just jump in and/or out of the car without sitting and waiting first and how to wait for her food and eat in very close proximity to the other dogs, but this was her first big test. I have to say that she passed with flying colours. Although a very submissive dog (overly so) we knew from experience that taking a rescue dog on a trip like this, with our "seasoned campaigners" would do her the world of good and change her for the better. She would grow in confidence and learn that the car is a great place to be and means fabulous walks. She would also learn to be patient, wait in the car as though it is a big mobile kennel, relax there, sleep there and have the chance to learn how to be a great companion on journeys - including learning how to stay in pet friendly hotels.
|Comfort break for both dogs and humans!|
|First Camino Markers of our|
walk into Rielves
|Ndzilo saves the day|
|Unpacked for the first night on this section of the Camino|
in Bar El Abuelo
Rielves is small but very pretty and with some magnificent houses on the route by which we entered! Lost were very new and being lived it and the whole place did not look much effected by the "crisis". Everything was neat and tidy and very "suburban" and not at all what I would have expected of such a small Spanish village. We had not seen a car in all our 10km - just one tractor making its way along the side of the river. The town too was quiet and I met the support vehicle and dropped off the dogs before continuing into the town centre and the arriving at the point where tomorrow's walk will start.
|Drying clothes on the balcony|
There isn't really anywhere to stay in Rielves so we planned to head out to Torrijos where I would walk through tomorrow and stay at one of the recommended accommodations. Bar El Abuelo. Before checking in we had a celebratory glass of ice cold beer to mark the first day on this Camino trip. I then paid my €15 for the night - a room with three beds - and a little balcony where I could hang out my first day's washing. Michael went off with the dogs to find a camping spot and I tried out the suggestion I read about on one of the Camino sites - to shower while stomping around on your dirty clothes. Add some travel wash to the wet clothes and while showering and adding on more shampoo and gel from the shower, shuffle around on the clothes. As you rinse off, so do the clothes. Wring them out and hang them up - with the lightweight walking clothing it was pretty much dry by the next day on most occasions. Sometimes clothes can then be pegged to the outside of the rucksack to finish drying in the breeze as you walk, and for me I mostly had the luxury of being able to dry them on the warm dashboard of the car or hang them from the string curtain rail we had put up behind the front seats to make privacy in the sleeping area of the car. A perfect indoor washing line!
We found a local bar in Torrijos for a menu del dia and enjoyed another celebration with a lovely glass of white wine. Perfect! Then, tucked up for the night - Michael trying out his new camping bed and bedroom and me waiting for the three bears to show up (haha!)