Long-Legged Americans:

On our way out of Santillana, we passed by a couple we’d met through out the trip several times. They are from Texas, and I swear every time I see them they’re eating, not walking. We made bets that the two would stop for breakfast at a cafe just out of town. As we passed the couple, the wife looked at the husband and said, “well, this won’t be desayuno for us, this will be more like “desaydos.” We laughed hysterically after the door closed behind them.

We decided to get a little morning walk in before stopping for breakfast. Our quick pace caught us up with an American guy who also had lived in Laguna Beach, California. He had hiked all the way down from Belgium this summer and was camping the entire way. His backpack was only one third the size of mine, yet somehow fit a hammock, a tarp, a pot, a pan and clothing. Aria and I have realized that our backpacks are really some of the largest we’ve seen on the Camino. According to the blogs we read about the Camino, we took only the bare minimum.

We trekked down into a beautiful cove that harbored a lovely hotel and outdoor restaurant. Feeling hungry and heat-exhausted, we stopped for some breakfast tortilla and coffee. We took off our bags and boots so that we could scrunch our toes to regain feeling back in our feet. It was nice to get out of the sun and under the giant umbrella canopy. We sat silently, for a while, staring out at the curling waves.

I went in to order and a very small man smiled up at me wonder. I couldn’t understand what he was trying to ask me as he waved his arms around. Needing a translator, he ran to the kitchen and pulled three grinning grill-masters out to face me. One of them got up the courage to ask where I was from. When I said the United States, the quad exchanged nods and unknown banter. Finally, I was met into the loop when he told me they what they were talking about. He said they knew I wasn’t a Spanish or European girl because I had “amazing long legs.”

Comillas was another cute inland town. We entered the cue to receive one of the 20 beds, this time staying in line for fear of what happened yesterday. While my sister and I waited, the boys bought some cold beers to share. Nothing like a freezing cold beer on a hot summer day. However, San Miguel, the popular/inexpensive Spanish beer is quite horrific. In fact, I would really prefer Rolling Rock or Keystone any day.

The hostel was cute and cold because of the massive thermal stone exterior. The communal spaces were on the first floor, and our beds were up the stairs in the vaulted attic space. Skylights over each bed let in the soft light. Once settled, the four of us took a short walk to the beach. We sunned ourselves until we were warm enough to test the water. The oceans frigidity surprises me every time here, but taking a freezing dunk after a long day of walking is wonderful.

Hungry, we were all hustled into the first diner we found where a waitress waved at us and asked us to sit down. We ordered from the variety of options they listed on their menu del dia. When stale bread was served as a starter, we should have guessed that the quality of the food would be subpar. We made our way through our obviously microwaved meal. I shared mine with my sister because the fish she ordered was inedible. Murphy’s law proved that everything that could go wrong with this meal, did. We all sat around disgusted while we joked about the fact that even their fries were still frozen on the inside and their katchup was rancid.

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