Day 10 of our pilgrimage was much less dramatic and difficult. After the 22.5 miles of day 8 (the longest day of hiking or backpacking ever for either of us) we took a full day off in Conques. Because it was a small city, we were almost forced to relax.
The cathedral there is amazing and we attended mass with much of it sung in French. We caught a few words, but it was beautiful. The front of the church has a very elaborate depiction of the day of judgement. Each night there is a presentation where they illustrate it with lights—so we hear. Way past our bed time.
Our hike today started with a steep climb out of Conques. Clear day with no streams to ford. Plenty of encounters with wildflowers and livestock.
One of the sad things we see is that nearly every town, even the small ones, has a war memorial to both World Wars. France had a population of about 40 million in World War I—with total dead of nearly 2 million. By contrast the US had a population of about 100 million—and about 117,000 killed. So many people lost, even in small towns.
Laurie did a fabulous job on the Relive video—if she doesn’t mind saying.