Moonset on the Meseta

Moonset on the Meseta

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Le Puy

Hello all,

We arrived in Le Puy by 3 this afternoon after a pleasant stay with a family in St. Julien-Chapteuil last night, 20 km from Le Puy. We got lost briefly for the first time since our first day, following a different grande randonnee out of town. We had bought quiches and pain au chocolat at a boulangerie, and continued on our merry way until we realized we were not heading in the right direction. We asked for help from some neighbors visiting at an intersection with big white turkeys bobbing along the roadside, and soon were straightened out. There was lots of difficult walking today, along roads with noxious fumes from vehicles and a chemical plant. There were a few lovely spots, one with a bench where we ate our pain au chocolat and were joined by a friendly orange kitten. Just before that a sweet woman with white hair and red shoes asked where we were from, and was thrilled that we were the first American pilgrims she'd encountered passing by her home. After exploring a fascinating very old church, dating back to at least the 12th century, with an earlier tower that had obviously once been a fortification), we climbed up Montjoie (Mount Joy), where we got our first look at Le Puy in the distance and had our picnic lunch. Then it was downhill for a long way, over some interesting stone bridges across the Loire, which is a mountain stream here with Mallards playing in the ripples, through endless suburban parkland, playing fields, a couple of huge supermarkets with parking lots(!), and community gardens, until we were suddenly right below St Michel D'Aighuile, and I said to Kent, "Now, we are really here." It was very emotional for me to see Le Puy again, in such different circumstances than I was in two years ago. We sat on the steps of the cathedral, from where I had set out on the long walk to Santiago, and I asked two gentlemen to take our picture.

Then we descended to the lower part of the city and sat in the Place du Plot to celebrate our arrival with a beer. Before long Corinne passed by, and I ran to catch her. Then, along came Michael and Gabi, who were actually looking for us. They had arrived just the day before, and would be leaving by train early tomorrow. We missed Bernard, as he had departed this morning.

We shared recollections of our journeys and promised to email, and then Kent and I set out to find our chambre d'hôte, which is on the edge of town, but delightful, pretty and clean. And it has wi-fi, so write!

Two tired, but happy pilgrims!

Linnea and Kent
Pilgrims on the road of life

No comments:

Post a Comment