Saturday 20th April 2013

Trip Start Mar 23, 2013
Trip End May 05, 2013

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Flag of Spain  , Castille and León,
Saturday, April 20, 2013

We leave the hostel early but Iain is in a bad way with his cold.  I offer to rest up with him but the Aussie doctor says he is grown up now and should leave him alone.  I am not that sure he is OK, but I am sure her bedside manner could be greatly improved!
Anyway, its the big day as we get to the famous Cross de Ferros, or Iron cross on the mountain.  I have not been sure whether to leave my stone, as its just a symbol and I am not sure it can really help you that much.  However I find a stone with a rainbow painted on it, the Brighton flag, so leave my stone.  I also leave a stone for my good friend, I am pleased to have carried it and hope it helps her.  I then smoke the Dunhill cigar I bought from home.  I bought it long time ago to celebrate my divorce and finally smoked it.  I left the butt with the stone to say a double goodbye.  I know these things are just symbols and gestures, I did not believe in these things, but I can say now it felt bloody good and really worked for me.
I also meet up with the lovely American Mother Lyn, and daughter Malana, I met a week or so before.  I have bought my hip flask with good malt whiskey and drink a toast, Lyn and Malana try some and approve.  Malana says she has not drank before but I am not sure.... 
I also met two more Danish guys, Arne and another Jan, they are homicide detectives from Copenhagen.  Arne is very jolly and Jan quiet, but both greatly enjoy a sample of my soon vanished Whiskey. 
It is very quiet at the cross, with beautiful sunshine and magnificent views as we are at over 1500m high.  I am very moved, its very hard to explain but it does feel like a very special place and I feel much lighter as I leave.  I walk slowly on, the views are lovely and sun very hot.  My ankle hurts less every day, I really feel like I can make it now with a bit of care.
That evening I reach the hostel, I am bushed but really pleased to catch up with the Dainish detectives.  Arne is a scream, he loves women and talks to everyone he meets, he is single but does not want to be.  He kind of reminds me of me, however he is taller, better looking, more charming and has a cool job, I think I will shut up now.
Anyway it was a great night.  The guys are walking in Scotland in September, I agree to meet up as I always fancied walking along Hadrian's wall and they are a scream.  By chance I hear from the other Jan, he is home safe and wants to visit soon, I think it is going to be a very busy summer....
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Kath J on

Feels like we've been there with you Doug!
Bet you have fantastic memories to hear about and look forward to the tales when you get back. What an inspiration - especially the whiskey :-)
Safe ankles for the remaining steps and bon voyage for the return home.

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