WELCOME to paulandvickionline.com
Who are we? Contact us Friends and Family Where have we been? Where to next?

The Camino de Santiago

(Part Two)

Burgos to Astorga

You have to feel like you're traveling on a special path, when both the trail marker and a rainbow
point you on your way.
  Set into the wall of a cave, the monastery of Tosantos looked like something out of The Lord of the Rings.
El Cid welcomed us as we arrived in Burgos; where we decided to stay for three nights
to rest our feet, enjoy the beautiful city, its Cathedral and the wonderful food there.
After Burgos the landscape started to change and we entered the Meseta - a flat, farming region.   This is about as flat as it gets -
and about all we saw for 7 days.
The legend of the Spring of San Bol says that if you put your feet into its icy water, you won't have any foot problems until Santiago de Compostela. It worked for us!   The albergue at Boadilla had the most beautiful grounds we had seen. The grass was like a carpet and the owners had filled the lawn with sculptures and ancient columns.
While we walked the 5 km. along the canal to Frómista, we heard all kinds of birds and frogs; but our favorite was the hoopoe bird that sounded like a coo coo clock.   Our friends from Vitoria, Fulgencio and Pilar, came to visit us and together we visited the Monastery of St. Zoilo.
Afterwards, they treated us to a delicious lunch of cecina, roasted leg of lamb, mollejas and Rioja wine.   Mollejas (lamb neck glands - I know it sounds terrible, but they are great and taste kind of like chicken livers.)
Cecina - beef that is dried and cured like ham   Lechal asado - Roasted leg of suckling lamb
In León we saw that a local bar was packed and thought there might be a soccer game on the big screen,
but instead found out it was a bullfight!
  The town of Hospital de Órbigo, famous for the many jousting matches held there, was decked out for the Medieval festival they were having.
When we entered the town of Astorga, it was 12:00 noon and the little Maragatos (mule drivers) on the town hall tower were clanging the bell.   This is the famous Cocido Maragatos, the local meal that consists of 6 courses. First you are served the meats.
They are a mixture of chicken, beef, sausages, and pork - including the pig snout you see on the fork.   Then you get a bowl of cooked garbanzo beans, boiled potatoes, and Gallego cabbage.
This is followed by the soup (meat & vegetable broth with a poached egg) you see above.
That soup is followed by another soup bowl of broth with noodles. Then comes the dessert of natillas (like a vanilla pudding with cinnamon) and mantecas (a pound cake).   Finally small cups of coffee are served with
short glasses of orujo liquor with cherries.