The last day on the via felt like the worst.  The morning started out pretty cool.  The walking was easy.  As the morning wore on into afternoon, walking became much more difficult.  Our blisters were getting more and more sore.  The temperatures were rising; the asphalt was getting hotter, and the uphill seemed steeper.  We trudged on.  We stopped for something cold to drink.  We stopped again a few hours later for something cold to drink.  We finally made it to the outskirts of Santiago.  We kept going uphill through town.  We stopped and asked for directions.  The guy said it was about 32 degrees (that’s 94 degrees F, people) and that we had about 2km to go.  OK, we can do that.  We slog on for what seems like years.  Still no cathedral, but we find a place that sells ice cream.  We stop and eat ice cream in the 90+ temps.  Lisbeth stops on the street and changes into long pants.  Her legs are burnt and turning bright red.  We trudge upward and onward.  At last, the cathedral.  Now all we have to do is find out where to get our credentials validated and get our certificates

Although the road was long, hot, and mostly uphill, the journey to Santiago showed us once again that determination will win out in the long run.  When I sat down and the woman at the desk asked me if I’d walked all the way from Ourense to Santiago, I could answer yes with pride and sore feet.  The certificate–all in Latin including my name–cost 2 euro plus another euro for the tube to carry it in.  You can see by the photo of Al at the fountain, cool water was a big plus at that point.  So was a taxi.  We found one to take us to the hotel where we took off our shoes, got room service, and went to sleep.  zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

p.s.  on the way to the hotel, we passed by one of those LED temperature signs and it read 36.5 degrees Celsius.  The temp gauge in the taxi said 34.  No wonder we felt hot!