Wednesday oct. 29th 2014 Zafra – Villafranca de los Barros 19,2 km


Wating for the store to open


Albergue Fuenta de Cantos


Early morning I packed my scattered, meanwhile dried up togs, ate some bread with sausage, which I had been carrying for days, packed the horse and with the first sun rays I hit the road. Today I didn’t really feel relaxed, probably because of the poor accessibility of phone and also the attitude people often had towards my animals. Boring landscape, plowed fields, as far as you can see, many of these damn gravel roads that hurt the feet of my horse and dog, no wind and temperatures in the sun above the 30 degrees C. Leons hoof shoes behind often fell off, but with a pair of pliers, I could make them fit better and that helped increasing our speed. The landscape became more beautiful, some lovely towns too (to me a village means being able to drink two cafes con leche plus a Coke, or vice versa), kilometers of vineyards. I stole here and there a bunch of grapes that seemed to be leftover for Leon and for me and thus I made up for the lack of water and lack of energy. For anyone coming behind me I left a few grapes. Pilgrims help each other. In the afternoon, the temperature was delicious again, we enjoyed walking and the question was whether to play tramp again by sleeping under the sky, or to go on to the lovely inn at 38 km. I decided to go for the latter. It was almost dark when we arrived at the remains of what was once has been a beautiful inn, a caravanserai? Desolated. Sorry, but “ouw kloete” (this is shit). This means preparing food myself, making my bed under an olive tree, tying Leon with a long rope, for the first time and hope that Leon does not get entangled in his rope. At night suddenly a lot of scrambling, Tosca thought it was necessary to make very sure I would wake up, but I saw that Leon was in place and I went on dreaming.

The next day I saw a large barren spot on each side of Leon’s pelvis. I first thought because of the backpacks, but now, afterwards, I think, that he was indeed caught in his rope, and crawled on his back and thus got those two chafing. Here in Spain it looks like all horses live on the roadside, tied to a long rope. Anyway this teaches Leon to handle a rope. Tosca is got used already, to being left alone in an unfamiliar place, at her leash. And I get used to the mosquitoes. We “spanisify”.

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