Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Storks and Cellars

 Day 54 - Reliegos

    The daylight hours here in Spain are messing with our seasonal minds.  Sunrise is 8:15 a.m. and sunset is 8:15 p.m.  When we start our mornings, it’s still dark until 8 and temps are in the 40’s.  We are bundled up and it feels like mid autumn.  However, in the evenings, it stays light until 8:30 and temps are in the mid 70’s, making it feel like mid summer.

     We continued our trek across the flat Meseta.  The scenery has not changed much.  Most all of our walk today was on a frontage path next to a narrow deserted highway.  Since Esther’s sandals are more comfortable on pavement than a rocky path, we often walked on the highway.  We had to have our ears sensitive to any approaching vehicle, because they race by at top speed. 

     The monotonous way is broken occasionally by small villages of maybe fifty homes with narrow streets.  Some are so quiet, you can walk all the way through town and not hear one person, let alone a barking dog. Other villages have street cafes and small plush hotels.  We were fortunate to come across an impressive coffee bar with modern industrial design that could have been in Seattle.  In fact, the barista who didn’t know a word in English had a ‘Seattle’ shirt on.

      Our night stop is a sleepy village with a nice alberge where we are sharing a sleeping loft with six strangers. At least there are no bunk beds.  On the outskirts of the village are some unique clay mounds with vents sticking out and tunnel entries.  It turns out that they are private wine cellars.  Some looked ancient and no longer functional; while others looked like Fort Knox.  Another interesting feature in town are huge stork nests on the church steeple.

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