Day 1. Valencia to Manises (8.5 km officially; my legs did 12 km )

I started the day by booking tonight’s accommodation. Hotel Manises’ rate had gone up from normal €35 to €70 (Saturday night with festivities in Valencia) and furthermore, they were full. So, for €78 I am booked at the Valencia Airport Travelodge in Manises. I am hoping things go down, henceforth!

First I headed toward the Cathedral to see what was happening, but instead found myself at the bridge where a  procession was to start. I took a seat on a bench in the shade, with some other old women, and waited. There was much coming and going of important functionaries dressed in black suits, a couple of nuns in black habit, local police in dashing bullet proof gear, volunteers in royal blue shirts handing out cards with the words of a hymn that had been written for this occasion, and  ordinary onlookers. Some impressive singing started, but nothing else was in sight, so I gave up, knowing that this could go on for hours.

Instead, I went down into the linear park that runs through the city, and headed in the direction to join the Camino. This park was full of Saturday exercisers – I walked past outdoor facilities including but not limited to: soccer, basketball, baseball, track and field including pole vaulters vaulting, bands playing, zumba classes, drum groups, and ping pong. Cyclists and walkers galore.

Finally I turned off this organized urban area onto a dirt path following the fluvial route. This felt more like a camino. Especially when I got to an interesting pedestrian highway overpass.

A few km later, I left this path and entered Manises, by the Valencia airport. Sometimes an airport Travelodge is exactly what you need.

I’ll admit to some serious doubts tonight about my fortitude. Remember I said that walking caminos gives me a sense of youth? Well, at the moment it is giving me a definite feeling of old age! I am exhausted, my whole body hurts, especially my feet, and I don’t think I can walk the planned 25 km tomorrow. Furthermore I can’t contact the only lodging in Cheste. At least the commuter train serves all the towns for the next several days, so I can always get a bed somewhere, after I see where I get to, but thinking about that makes my head hurt.

Spoiler alert: I went to bed at 7:30 pm, stayed there for 11 hours (very very rare for me), mostly sleeping. I awoke during the night but my feet still hurt en route to the bathroom. Finally at 6:30 a.m., I got up, surprised that my feet were improved, and my mood had lifted. One should never underestimate the effects of jet lag and sleep-deprivation.

3 thoughts on “Day 1. Valencia to Manises (8.5 km officially; my legs did 12 km )

  1. Valencia’s lodging has skyrocketed, unfortunately.

    Buen Camino regardless, and I look forward to reading about how many of those 25 km you did after your refreshed night of sleep 🙂

  2. I sure know what you mean about limitations, Clare. I know you’ll figure out a way to make things work. Best wishes.

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