Day 19 // Astorga – Foncebadon// 28.4 km

The morning started pretty funny. We got woken up by the angry owner of the auberge switching on the lights at 7 AM. Sasha was sleeping right next to the light switch and turned the light right back off. The angry man was back and said in Spanish, that we have to get up and turned the light on again. When he left, I heard Sasha yell at him - this is not an army! So funny!

Lorenzo from USA who left the group for 2 days because he didn't take the alternative route is joining us today.

We had breakfast at the first bar in the village. Finally I decided to get myself a souvenir to remember this - a bracelet. I've been searching for a couple days now, but was unsuccessful until now. 

At the next village we stopped at a bar for a cold drink. As we were having conversation somehow we mentioned music and then we saw a man run up to the second floor. He opened the window and turned on music! Everyone outside of the bar started dancing to Despacito. The sales lady was dancing, the cook was dancing. Magical moment. It was so inspiring to start this morning with a dance. We continued the hike with huge smiles on our faces.

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New village - new cold drink! A little girl pulls up with her bicycle and starts selling her handmade bracelets. Sasha's good heart can't say no. But I hear some bargaining going on. At the end the little girl sold 3 bracelets to Sasha. She put one of the bracelets on my hand and wished me a colorful Camino. I got goosebumps. We hugged. She gave one to G and kept one for herself. And a moment ago I said I wanted a bracelet to remember this trip. Now I have multiple.

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The heat is getting stronger and I decide not to take off clothes but put more on, because the sun is getting a bit too much for my skin. Leggings, sweatshirt, a hat and a wet neckerchief.

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Camino has taught me to love forests. Not just the fact that I can catch a bit of a shadow, but the freshness, smell and peace.

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We reach a rest stop. An ordinary place in the forest with a couple benches. I had a weird but special feeling at that moment so I put on a song "Sunscreen" for everybody to listen to. We're sitting in a circle, listening to the song, thinking, being silent. Everyone teared up and remember the ones at home. We left notes and continued on.

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Our last climb up the hill before we reach auberge. The mountain views are gifts to our eyes. The forest is right next to us. Peace. Silence.

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I've always wanted to walk on clouds. I thought this was something very similar.

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Since we're going up a mountain, almost to the top (we'll reach the top tomorrow), I mention how awesome it would be if our auberge would have a mountain view. Yeah right!

Wow! What a village! A complete middle of nowhere. There is no way to explain the feeling and the atmosphere. We're taken to a house with a barn next to it.

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We're sleeping upstairs, like in an attic. And believe it or not, when we walk in this is what is waiting for us.

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Camino proves me once again that you have to be brave to say your wishes out loud. And now I truly understand that you really have to be careful what you wish for. And, if you want something, be specific. 

I am at a loss for words about the magic of this village. In the evening everyone in the auberge are joining together for a song.

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We go out to watch the sunset.

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When my phone battery was almost dead, I turned on the flashlight and went back to the attic to get the charger. I stop because I get greeted by about 10 sheep. I stop, they stop. We looked each other in the eyes. I did not know what to do. So I just stood there with my flashlight and watched them. 

When we were on our way to bed we left the main building and went outside in the yard. And we stayed there for 30 minutes because the sky was full of stars. A Milky Way that reminded a little of the Camino arrow. Peace. Beauty. Infinity. 

Does life get any more beautiful than now? Are there more stars somewhere else? Is there a more beautiful view outside the window? Is this all real? 

I will never forget this day and this little paradise corner. These feelings and emotions. 

I am really grateful for my wonderful companions. We are all grateful to Camino for this day. And we are not taking anything for granted.

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/Sasha, Lorenzo, Me, G, Diego/ 

Thank you Camino! You made me happy! 

With love! 

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