Day 22 – La Calzada to Fuenterroble. Just 20 kms today.
Fuenterroble is well known for the Donativo albergue run by Father Don Blas. So that was going to be an interesting end today. I was looking forward to seeing it.
It was a pre-dawn start again because the afternoons are still quite hot, but very cold pre dawn. I think it was something like four or five degrees. And of course, we left well before breakfast was available. So, the idea was to get breakfast in the first village that we came to, which was Valverde de Valdelacasa, 8.7 kilometers. So it’s a lovely walk in that crisp pre-dawn and dawn period. Up a little bit of a hill to Valverde de Valdelacasa. We found a wonderful bar where the guy was able to provide the fairly sort of standard breakfast or ‘my’ standard breakfast of toast and ham and orange juice and coffee. That will keep me going all day!
And then it was onwards through the Valdelacasa to Fuenterroble de Salvatierra. When we got into Fuenterroble, we checked into the albergue there. I have to say I know some people rave about this albergue. And I’ve heard a couple of people say that they didn’t like it.
I think it was wonderful. It is really quirky. It’s a building that’s been added onto bit by bit over the years. There were two or three quite large dormitory rooms with maybe 12, I think they have 70 beds all up. So, there was two or three quite large dormitories and there was a building out the back which had another dormitory with showers and toilets. Two of our friends had what you could really only describe as like a Hobbit house with a tree growing up inside it which was really weird. One of them snored, so they got put out into that room. I was able to share a room with just two bunkbeds in it with two other people, so that was really good.
We had a wonderful menú del día, as there was two good bars, a short walk from the Albergue and then of course we came back for the communal dinner. I have to say I thought was really good. It just shows you what can be done with simple ingredients, you know, without spending too much. The flavors were just outstanding. There was a sort of a chicken rice soup. Then there was what I can only describe as something like bubble and squeak, but it was sort of fried potato and onions with eggs through it and all that kind of stuff, which was really nice and bananas for dessert.
We had asked earlier, “can we bring some wine?” And they said, “yeah, by all means”. A couple of us went down the road and bought 4 bottles of wine so everybody could have some wine. That was a really nice meal but it was a bit rushed sadly. The reason being that there was a big event going on that evening with Father Don Blas’ donkeys. The donkeys were drawing in some large religious sculptures that were taken down to the local church and that all went on very late, so I decided to go to bed. Sadly I missded meeting Don BlasBut if you’re thinking of staying at that alburgue, I think it’s great. It’s a very quirky place. I thought it was a wonderful place. The hospitality was outstanding. The hospitalero was brilliant and I would definitely stay there again, so it’s another eventful day.