After relatively few mishaps (being incommunicado, purchasing a train ticket and then swapping it for a bus ticket, agreeing on an obscure meet-up place that happened to be closed, walking three days’ worth in two days) we met Thad in the small city of Sarría. It has been so fun to have him along on the walk and his presence only enriches the experience of the adventure.
Thad has jumped right in and his travel style (read: coffee consumption and comfort with lack of planning) seems to mesh well with our own. We are seeing new kinds of terrain and building styles, more cows and donkeys, and lately the stray cats that once resembled raggedy teddy bears are looking a bit more like punk rock tough cats who glare at us menacingly with one cloudy blue, bionic-looking eye as we walk by.
Somehow Austin has adopted the role of (only somewhat skilled) translator for the group and has become very effective at procuring our daily accommodations. It should be noted that last week she negotiated the cost of our hotel room down about €15 while conversing entirely in Spanish.