Monday, April 25, 2011

Monday April 25 Moissac to St.Antoine

Renaud et Roseanne - La Ferme de Villeneuve

Historically the first day of every one of our treks has been in seriously inclement weather; everything from torrential storms to blizzards but today that pattern was broken. At 8am, with an Irish hug and a European double cheek air kiss; we left our gite, Ultreia and with a quick walk over the bridge we were out of Moissac. The damp breezy morning air held a promise of rain but that didn't dampen our spirits. We started off on a flat gravel paved path bordered by the canal on one side and lined with towering Poplars on the other side. After 3kms. there was a sign indicating a variant, a high mountain scenic route. We looked up at the mountain mist and judiciously and indulgent continued along the flat canal route.

Since today was a holiday, Easter Sunday, we had the path almost to ourselves save for a few cyclists and a grandpere and his grandson fishing.It wasn't long before teh enthusiastic bounce in my step faded and I settled into my characteristic plod. My pack was manageable at first as we discovered that if Dayton hung his Crocs outside his back then he could carry more of my stuff. Dayton is my sherpa, my pathfinder and my hero.

It pays to pay attention on the camino or you will miss the signs. We were chatting so much that we almost missed the sign that indicated we were to leave the canal path and head into the countryside.We crossed the La Garonne river and before long passed fields of crops carefully protected by plastic. At first I thought they were fields of white asparagus like in Spain, but soon we learned they were strawberries. I asked how much for a pint but the lady selling the strawberries generously said they were free for us. Imagine the bliss of walking along a French country road with the sun beating down on us, savouring the taste of freshly picked strawberries and the juice staining our lips and fingers.

It was as good a day as you could hope for on a camino but still not without its trials. By the time we had finished 22kms our toes and feet were aching and I had a very painful pressure spot on the top of one foot from my new boots. We took a rest and padded the spot and soldiered on.

At our gite, La Ferme de Villeneuve, we were greeted by our hosts Roseanne and Renaud. Dayton immediately recognized them as a couple we had met last October in Lauzerte. Our stay there has been like a wonder. La Ferme is a magnificent and massive old farm,
house that is still under renovations and promises to be the place where pilgrims will be pampered. To be continued

1 comment:

  1. What a great day. Glad the weather was better for you. I can just see the stawberry juice dripping off your chins. But remember, that is added weight. All good here, only 4 dead ants. Took Alicia for her injection and she faired well. They are leaving for Victoria for 2 weeks on Saturday. House not sold yet. We're there in spirit so have a sip of wine for us.
    John and Linda