Camino Finisterre, Day 8: Lires to Muxía – Mainly Jane Again In Spain

Thursday 9 May 2024 – I was feeling better than yesterday, but discretion, valour, you know?  So once again we formulated a plan whereby Jane would do the hard yards on foot while I would do the easy kilometres in a taxi.  The weather prospects for the day

seemed similar to yesterday’s, which made a prompt start desirable (for her, at any rate), and so she departed at about 8.30am, leaving me to skulk first in my room and then in the hotel bar, which, for some reason, features a counterintuitively massive meat fridge.

I skulked until it was time to catch a taxi (and, it must be said, see what fallout there might be from eating moderately for breakfast, something of a novelty for the last days. Spoiler alert: no fallout; phew!). As yesterday, I have nothing to add about the journey, so here’s Jane….

It was much cooler and lightly overcast when I started out, leaving Lires and heading off on woodland and farmland paths of varyingly good going…

There were some striking sights along the way

and much evidence of spring planting and preparation.

I walked for a while behind this interesting variation on a horse-drawn carriage…

I wondered if the farmer was taking her to be shod, as she didn’t appear to have shoes and he was positioning the tractor very carefully as he drove so that she could walk where possible on the grassy verge, and avoid areas of broken road surface. [Not shoddy treatment, then – Ed (temporary)]

The way was unremarkable in many ways, although there were some great photo opportunities…

until the steepish bit up to the high point of the walk on Monte Lourido.

What goes up must come down, and the views opened up all around as the way descended (with what appeared to be a forest fire in the distance).

There were abrupt changes in the quality of the surface –

not so much of a problem for me on foot, but a bit of a sharp intake of breath for these Italian bicigrinos!

At a spring on the outskirts of Muxía this chap was doing his keep fit exercises, before filling his water bottle and passing me on his way back into town.

The descent into the town skirts the beautiful Praia de Lourido, with the less then beautiful (IMHO) Costa da Morte Parador on the slopes above.

The town is not particularly noteworthy, although there are some interesting murals

and the harbour area is quite picturesque.

I reached our hotel before Steve wafted in, so was able to check in and await his arrival.

Ah – here he is now!

The taxi ride passed without incident, except the one which happened before it started.  At 1235, I asked the nice lady behind reception at the hotel to request a taxi to take me to Muxía, and she told me it would be there in 20 minutes.  Accordingly, at 1255, I was sitting outside the hotel, ready to depart, and a taxi rolled up.  He looked grumpy when I approached and said, in my best Englishman-abroad-attempt-at-communicating-with-the-locals, “Muxía?”  I was disconcerted when he simply replied “no” and walked off into the hotel.  I thought at first he was going to, as it were, pick me up inside the hotel, but actually he’d just rocked up for a coffee. I sat back down, somewhat disconsolately, wondering if there’d been a cock-up, when another taxi turned up, and it turned out to be mine. The journey proceeded at Spanish taxi pace, i.e. slightly faster than is (a) legal or (b) comfortable.

Once we were both safely ensconced at the Hotel a de loló, we could relax for a while before going out for lunch.  For a change, there was no worry about finding a meal, as María, on the front desk, had pointed us at a restaurant, A Marina, whose kitchen was open all day.  The room was one of those excellent, well-organised hotel rooms which are not expansive, but which are beautifully designed to have all that’s reasonably needed, all reasonably within reach.  That included a kettle! We were thus able to treat ourselves to a Nice Cup Of Tea. When we were in Finisterre, Jane had spotted some local Earl Grey,

so, in order to conserve our precious stocks of Twining’s finest, we tested out this “precious black tea” and found it to be satisfactorily restorative, giving us the energy to go to lunch. Then we went for a walk. Obviously. (It’s so nice to be able to type that, as today is the first day I’ve felt capable of walking with any degree of pleasure, dignity or pace since Monday.)

Lunch was also an opportunity to reintroduce my digestive system to proper food (OK, and gin), in an experiment which – so far, writing some hours later – seems to have been a success, or at least not a noisome failure.  Before we embarked on the walk, we picked up our Compostelae Muxiannae, our certificates for completing what, in our case, is Phase II of III.  And I suppose it’s somewhat cheating for me to claim a Compostela, since I didn’t actually walk the whole way.  So sue me.

Our objective for the walk was to go to the “0 km” post which marks the Muxía end of the Camino, by the sanctuary dedicated to the virgin.  As with Finisterre, we visited last Autumn, but by bus.  The site is quite impressive, as you’ll have noticed from the video I shot last year.

Last year we had approached the site from the coach park, which, obvs, is designed to show the whole area to its best advantage, and I was very taken with the charisma of the place, and left with the impression that it was somehow on a remote promontory.  This year, though, we just walked 10 minutes up the road from the town, and discovered that it isn’t.

You just walk up the road and there you are.  It’s still a lovely site, though.

On the way there we passed the Igrexa de Santa María de Muxía, which is the site of a yearly pilgrimage every September,

and, rather less spiritually, drying rails for conger eels,

which are arranged in a square, rather than the conger line I’d expect.

We spent a few minutes at the site reacquainting ourselves with its Camino-related aspects, but particularly, of course, the “0 km” marker, to show we’d completed this stage.

There are other decent views across the site, too,

including the “sail rock”, which was part of the stone boat supposedly sailed there by the virgin Mary to reassure St. James that his work was successfully completed.  The Camino is full of symbolics like this.

We walked back into town round the other side of the headland, past dry stone walling which we at first thought might have been the remains of ancient habitations

but, it soon turned out, were simply allotments.

One final conger eel rack

and we were back at the hotel, getting ourselves outside more of Sir Winston’s finest.

The morrow?  Too soon to be certain, but the omens are favourable; tonight will be the acid test, possibly in a literal manner, as to whether my digestion really was ready for that meal.  If it turns out that it was, I think I might be ready to rejoin Jane on the road as we walk the 10km or so to Quintáns. If she’ll have me, that is. It’s a short walk and, one hopes, not too arduous. The current forecast for the weather is (whisper it) good, with cooler temperatures but no rain. So, stay tuned and see how the day unfolds, OK?

3 thoughts on “Camino Finisterre, Day 8: Lires to Muxía – Mainly Jane Again In Spain

    1. Steve Walker Post author

      Yes, Jane has been great in making sure all these ad hoc plans work. And it definitely looks as if I will be able walk a section today, albeit a short one. Good practice.


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