Yesterday morning I finally tore myself away from the couch at the Gite Sentinelle and at 10-ish I began the walk to Figeac. About 5 minutes from the Gite I bumped into an English guy, from Devon, who was walking in the opposite direction; from Santiago. Neil had walked for 2 months already and was going to try to walk all the way to Croatia:
We had both walked for 2 months and we spent a few minutes swapping tips on the path ahead in either direction.
The walk to Figeac was not as strenuous as previous days, but still it had its ups and downs.
About halfway there is a great little Donativo cafe, with cake and coffee set out for pilgrims:
I arrived to Figeac in the early evening and spent a while walking the cobbled lanes, trying to find the correct way out of the town. Be warned here that the GR6 also routes from Figeac and I almost took this way instead of the correct one for the GR65. Semi-exhausted I decided that Figeac wanted me to sleep in its town limits for the night and I instinctively went to seek out the church to see if a night’s stay would be possible. There is a Donativo Gite in Figeac, but I didn’t fancy sharing a room with a potential snorer. So far in France I haven’t met any priests, but this time I was in luck. Father Luc opened the door and after a brief conversation he walked me 100 metres to a metal gate, and then inside to a building – looking a little like an abandoned warehouse – where inside there was a room where I could sleep, showers, and a fully-equipped kitchen where I could make a tea in the evening and a coffee in the morning. I had a wonderful sleep:
With my electronics all charged up and having had a lovely warm shower in the morning, I left the building at around 8am and began the walk onwards to Cajarc.
The walk continues in much the same way as the walk into Figeac did, with semi-gently rolling hills. The countryside though is much greener and the way passes through many forested areas. About 25% of the walking was on tarmac, with the other three quarters on stone or mud:
Pilgrims should always remember to knock on the rocks with their walking sticks before sitting down in the shade in case you come across one of these fellows also enjoying a spot of shade in the heat of the day:
From Figeac to Cajarc (about 30km) there isn’t really much in the way of shops and bars so you definitely should take food with you. About 10km from Cajarc you do come to the village of Grealou and although it wasn’t open yet when I passed though my friend Anja stayed here for about a month last year (at least I assume this is the one) and recommends this Gite as a place to kip on the way:
The telephone contact: 06.84.37.64.73
A little tired and very hungry, I arrived to Cajarc about an hour ago and have spent the last 45 minutes online, complements of the very helpful Tourist Information office here. I also found 5 Euro in my rucksack this morning so I’m off to the supermarket shortly to buy bread and cheese to gorge on.
The view of Cajarc as you come over and down the hill:
Yesterday morning at the Gite Sentinelle I was given another walking stick, so I have been walking again with 3 legs. After my late afternoon siesta today I will continue on along the path and hope to find a place outside with cover where I can (hopefully) get a good night’s sleep. I slept well last night but it was difficult getting up and I fear I am getting a little ill, but I’m hoping that my current fitness will fight off the symptoms before they develop into a cold or flu. Bread and cheese here I come 🙂