Another early start because of the heat. The landscape has changed from hilly pastures with many farms and hamlets to oak forests with sparse farming and very few villages and no place to fill our water bottles. The exception was the town of Cajarc along the banks of the Lot River.. A mid-morning expresso fired us up for looming climb. Of course, once you leave a town on a river, you have to climb out of it.
Esther made the observation that gites seem to fall into two categories: either loosey goosey or persnickety. Tonight’s fell into the latter category: Shoes stay outside, poles go here, backpacks go in this room, put any belongings you need in a basket and bring it to your bed, etc. The gite is very clean and well designed. However, there is no meal provided, but some non-perishable items are for sale to make your own. We ended up eating all together. A group of women had brought some provisions.
Speaking of women, there are seven women sharing a large bedroom with me, the only man. It is an observed fact that the Camino is more popular with women than men. There are various theories of why, but I am still formulating some definitive reasons. A curious observation is that almost all of the women have read the book’Wild’ about a young lady who hiked the Pacific Crest Trail.