Yesterday we woke up to pouring rain and, even though I felt considerably better after a good night’s sleep, Raymond was feeling terrible. So we took a taxi to Coimbra and got a pension. The good news was, as Raymond slept, I was able to meet up with my brother Dave and his wife, Phyllis who were travelling south from Porto. It was great to connect with them. We met in the afternoon and later for supper. I won’t see them again until I am back in Canada.
Raymond was still feeling lousy this morning so decided to take the train to our next destination, Mealhada while I walked the 23 kms. It was a solitary walk, just what I needed at this time. As I walked along a lonely forest path that was quite muddy, I could see no fresh footprints in the mud. I was the only pilgrim walking this section today. It was a great time of contemplation and prayer and I made excellent time, arriving in Mealhada by 2:00. Unfortunately, when I reached town, it took almost an hour to find the hostel that Raymond had booked. But I was still ahead of schedule.
Today is a holiday in Portugal, the Feast of All Saints, but Halloween has not caught on much here. But today, towns were crowded with people coming from church, visiting and strolling the streets. Usually a pilgrim sees few people in the towns, so it was good to see everyone out and enjoying themselves.