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One of the first things you quickly learn on the Camino is that some days/nights are wonderful, and some are not so wonderful. Yesterday was a very demanding day and night. The weather was cold and wet as I walked from Moudon yesterday afternoon, and the countryside turned bland and uninspiring. I think of my children every day, but yesterday I missed them more than most days. I could feel my resilience to the walk gradually being hacked away by fatigue: another day, another day full of walking. It can begin to get to you. Usually these days follow with a surprisingly wonderful evening, but yesterday this surprisingly wonderful evening didn’t arrive.
In the early evening, a few kilometres from Lausanne, I stumbled across a beautiful chapel on a hill:
I tried the door and it was open, so I went in and decided to unpack my sleeping bag and kip down for the night in the entrance room. I saw that the official closing time was 8pm, so I was expecting someone to arrive at 8pm to close up and in my experience so far on my Camino the person locking up would either let me stay or offer to put me up for the night. Just before 8pm there were 2 announcements over the speakers in the church, asking anyone present to leave. At 8pm-ish, the front doors to the church automatically locked and I slowly drifted into a luxuriously warm and peaceful slumber. It was soon after this that the alarm went off – triggered probably by my moving around in my sleeping bag – and within half an hour I was saying my goodbyes to the caretaker of the church as I unpacked my sleeping bag and set it down onto the ground outside. I was now set to sleep outside – no offer of a roof over my head from the caretaker – and besides, I was ok to sleep outside.
I had a terrible sleep and when I woke up for the 3rd time this morning at 5am, I decided to be brave and get out of my sleeping bag to get my things together and walk into the centre of Lausanne. Walking through the early morning streets I could see frost on the cars.
I plan to have a look around Lausanne this morning, until then heading off in the direction of Rolle.
The good news is that I have made it to Lake Geneva and its a walk besides the lake all the way to Geneva for the last leg of my Camino in Switzerland.
Some photos which I took yesterday:
Some days on the Camino can be difficult, but you always need to find a way of lifting yourself up.
It’s often the small things which produce the greatest lift: such as a hot, black coffee first thing.
Today will be a much better day. Without the bad days/nights it wouldn’t be possible to appreciate as much the good ones 🙂