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Cycling the Camino de Santiago - Day 10 (Dealing with loneliness and monotony)

Today I caught myself cycling down a secluded road singing a Rihanna song at the top of my lungs. 

In my defence, there was nobody around for miles and miles... which is just as well because I looked, and sounded, like an absolute nutter.

The solitude of the day has, I think, driven me slightly insane. 

All day there was nothing but flat roads and fields, flat roads and fields, over and over again, with only two sharp inclines and a few small towns to break the monotony. 

Sick of my own laboured breathing, I stuck on my playlist after about half an hour. I have only one, and it was originally created for my cycle to work, when I had a work, and repeats every 26 minutes which, in itself, might also drive me insane. 

I now know every single word to 'Wild Thoughts', 'Strip that Down', 'Despacito', and 'Your Song'. And that bloody Katy Perry song about catching fish. 

My distance today was around 40km.

The first stop was a small town called Quintanillas. 

No offence to the place itself, but it could have been any of the small towns I've passed over the course of the last week - sunkisssd terracotta roofs, broken down and abandoned buildings, and the occasional local who wants nothing more than to stop dead in their tracks and stare at you until you've left their field of vision. 

Quintanillas did come in handy for a refill of my water bottle though. 

In every town, and even sometimes just alone by the side of the road in the middle of nowhere, there are public taps that dispense free water. 

At the start I tried to drink only bottled water, but necessity means you do eventually have to drink from them. 

You know, to stay alive and stuff. 

I've been drinking from these road taps for about a week now and haven't been ill, so I guess they must be fairly clean. 

After hitting the road again for a few hours I stopped once more coming into my destination of Olmillos de Sasamón.

I spotted a deserted and somewhat run down playground and decided to sate my inner child on the swings for a few minutes. 

I also visited the local church, which was fairly big given that the area only has a population of around 150 people. 

I ended the day by checking into my accommodation and having a bath. 

Tomorrow is likely to be more of the same - a boring road through unremarkable landscape with nobody to talk to. 

Usually the Camino is very sociable, but for two days I have had to deviate from the traditional walking route because I'm on a bicycle. 

That means I'm not meeting any other pilgrims during the day, and I'm not staying in the same places as they are at night. 

But on Thursday I will rejoin the route, and on Friday I should reach the big city of Leon, so I take solice in the fact that my lonely monotony will not last much longer. 

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