Notes on Walking | Day 7

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Joey Magia

Aljucén.

Today's journey was filled with mixed feelings after leaving Mérida. On one hand, I had intended to spend an extra day to explore the city and rest my body from the Camino - but chose otherwise considering the accommodation options were out of my budget on short notice. But on the other hand, the excitement of continuing the Camino to Santiago kept my spirits up; considering I still have many more towns and cities to see on the way.

The Extremadura fields were quiet today once I had gone past the Proserpina Dam. So also was the tranquil town of El Carrascalejo; where luckily the Albergue was connected to a bar, allowing me I top up on water before continuing my journey.

The many Gothic churches on my way have been characteristic of not just the history of the towns, but also of the Vía de la Plata. The serene elegance common of the 'ghost towns' and quiet pueblos; amidst the Extremadura plains rest these churches with their countless stories. Who were the people who once traversed these roads? And touched the church walls? And worked in the farm fields? Or journeyed to Santiago on pilgrimage?

In silence and imagination are written endless myths, with some littered on this paved way to Compostela.

Now I rest at Aljucén, and hope to enjoy the Roman baths tomorrow for my body to rejuvenate and refuel before the journey onwards.

#caminodesantiago
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