Saturday, April 22, 2017

Camino Mozarabe - Day 5 - Baena

Left Peter's place late today at 8 am. Henry wasn't even ready yet when I left. Gave 2 of the boiled eggs from last night (from half a dozen) to Henry for the day while I scoffed 2 myself just in the morning. A nice day, not very cold morning. A look at the terrain that hopefully the route will skirt in between the big hills/mountain. 

Start taking any photos that are not olives (enuf!). Some pines, cactus and soon left the province of Granada and entered the province of Cordoba.

Before the mid-point the route is passes through a lake. It was blue on the map. In reality it was dry and more like a salt lake. I wanted to go to the edge to have a better look but the dry hard reeds around the lake acts as an impenetrable barrier. 

At mid-point I was taking a food break, getting out of the sun under an olive tree when someone walked by. At first I thought it was Henry but thinking he couldn't be that fast.  It turned out to be a Spanish pilgrim Umberto from Vigo (Galicia) all the way to And Alicia to walk. Umberto said he saw me back in Moclin but didn't do anything. I guess last night he found another place to stay as he wasn't at Peter's. I supposed on the Mozarabe unless there are more municipal albergue one can easily missed other walkers. He wanted to take a picture of a Singapore pilgrim (many find that unbelievable), I took one of him back.

After 2 pm and 24.6 km, finally in Baena! I felt like a Peregrino Asado (roasted pilgrim). No castle here. Baena is a regional olive oil production city with lots of olive factories around. This is also where the Camino Mozarabe from Malaga and Granada joins before going up to Cordoba.

Yesterday, Peter mentioned that there is place to stay for pilgrims (kind of like an albergue for 18.50 euros). At this price I rather stay in a hostal paying a few euros more.

In town near the center I passed by a bar/restaurant with a 'P' pension sign. Had my coffee and asked for a room. 20 euros. Shared bathroom. Fine. The guy took a couple of keys and for every room he checks he closes the door (apparently the cleaners did not come in to work today). The only clean room available had an attached bathroom. For the same price, yay!

Worried about Henry. I hope to see him here far after siesta (6 pm) and going to the supermarket I had not seen him.

On the way to Baena I was thinking. There are two more stages to Cordoba. A short stage to Castro del Rio (small fort) and a crazy 40 km stage to Cordoba! I definitely would not try that distance in this weather (instead split it into two 25 km day with a detour to Santa Cruz). Not nice.


I walk back towards Malaga and stop in Antequera. My plan was to stay at Michael's place near Antequera for a few days before flying home 1st May. He will be there from Tue so it gives me 4 days to walk south. It beats going to Cordoba in 3 days, stay 2 nights and then take the train south to Antequera. I also get to enjoy a good part of the Camino Mozarabe (Malaga section). Heck, I can even walk the 14.5 km from Antequera to Michael's home. As I had already cycled the Cordoba-MerĂ­da section last year and visited the grand mosque in Cordoba, no need to see it again so soon. Besides, I already had the Mozarabe Malaga overlay on the map so moving against the arrow would not be an issue.

Change of plan. I am heading south tomorrow. It's my Camino, I can do it anyway I want......

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