So . . .
Why’d I wait so long to write about a trip I took six months ago? Primarily inertia. I finally pushed myself to start writing because I had written about my past trips and didn’t want to break the chain. This was not the last loop in the chain because I was starting to plan my 2017 trip for mid-May. And I had an inkling of my 2018 hike. So, I started writing more from a sense of obligation rather than wanting to. I thought I wouldn’t have much to say and planned on consolidating several days under one post and get it over with as fast as possible. However, once I started writing, a flood of memories came rushing back and the writing just flowed to such an extent that I’ve had to pick and chose what I wrote about. Who knew?
Because of my sleepless night, I got a late start this morning – 7:30 am. Repeatedly mentioning me being sick is starting to get monotonous. Suffice it to say that I fought the flu thru Porto and the cough stayed with thru Santiago. Overall, it made for a very tough trip, not just physically, but also mentally.
In Sickness & In Health
So, I’ve been sick for most of this trip. It felt like a really bad flu – fever, runny nose, headache, muscle aches, chills, sore throat and a really bad cough. Thinking back, there are two possible sources. On the flight from Frankfurt to Lisbon, I sat next to someone who had a really bad cough. Instead of using the crook of her elbow, she coughed into her hand. We talked thru most of the trip. We met up again at baggage claim and when she left we shook hands. J’accuse!
My first day of walking, I only went 8 km because it was so friggin’ hot. When I got to my hotel room, I cranked up my air conditioner. It was a modern, relatively new hotel and I remember thinking at the time, damn, that’s a really good A/C. The A/C vent was located so that the cold air blew directly on the bed. I woke up in the middle of the night, freezing. So, either of those are the culprit or maybe both.
However, I’ve decided that repeatedly mentioning me being sick in the individual posts is starting to get monotonous. So, I’m not going to mention it in my daily posts. Suffice it to say that, with the exception of the cough, I fought the flu thru Porto and the cough stayed with me thru Santiago.
Obviously this made the trip physically tough and miserable but the other side effect was that, in order not to pass on what I had, I mostly stayed in private rooms in hotels (there were a couple of exceptions when I didn’t have a choice). As a result, I didn’t really get the camino camaraderie that I did in past caminoes until after Santiago, when I was able to stay in albergues. However, despite that, it was a wonderful trip, Portugal and it’s people (when not driving 😄) were amazing and I am very glad that I did not quit, something I contemplated several times.
Church in Ansiao, Portugal
I tend to compare my pictures with those taken by other travel bloggers. And I cannot believe how much mine suck. In every aspect – content, quantity, quality, composition, etc. Prior to each trip,, I tell myself the same thing – 1) pay attention to what you’re shooting and the story you’re trying to tell. 2) More pictures of people. 3) Generally, more pictures. You can always elect to not use a photograph but not much you can do, once you are home, about missing shots. For example, the following shot. For the life of me I cannot figure out why I took a picture of a pile of scrap lumber.
And here’s another one. Have no idea what it was about this scene that caught my attention. SMH!
I used an iPhone 6s for my camera on this trip. Somewhere along the 7th day, something went wrong with it. Initially, some pictures would be fine and then others would have weird streaks or were not as sharp. Later on, I realized that I had cracked my lens, which progressively got worse. Here’s an example. I now have an iPhone 7 Plus, which is what I will take on my next trip. While that takes care of the camera, the camera operator is still questionable.