Sunday, May 07, 2006


Today it was cold (9°C, which might as well be freezing, for me) and drizzly-rainy, exactly the weather I don't like. There were no people about, as it was Sunday, and everything was closed. So, strolled a bit around the center of town and walked around the Roman Walls (UNESCO World Heritage Site!) and poked in at the cathedral. Other than that, there isn't all that much to see in Lugo (which probably explains why it doesn't even geta mention in Let's Go).

Lugo is currently an off-the beaten path stop on the way to Santiago, so it doesn't really get much of its share of visitors (hanging out at the pilgrim's refuge as I couldn't find a hotel near the city center I saw it only had 5 or 6 people as opposed to the 30-something I had seen in Redondela). It is interesting, for it appears that Lugo is trying to attract more tourists. Just in this morning's paper, I read a letter to the editor where a reader suggested that the best way to do this was for Lugo to build a campground.

Clearly this reader has no idea what being a tourist is all about! In my opinion, encouraging more hotels in the city center and keeping the shops open even on Sundays would help a lot. But most importantly, putting a few signs near the historic buildings and squares is essential, first of all, for instilling in the locals a certain pride in the history and heritage of the city, but also, so that the tourists can feel they "did" something more meaningful than just walk around the city walls without knowing anything or learning why the walls are special other than simply because they are kind of old. Why, even tiny, provincial fishermantown Viana do Castelo in Portugal had many such markings at every single square and government building, surely, Lugo could easily afford to put up some signs.


Anyway, it appears that the Gods of the blogosphere in a rather sadistic streak (for they are fickle, as Greek mythology tells us, and for entertainment like to play with the destinies of men) are intent on having me suffer the punishing fate of crossing the dreaded Cordillera Cantabrica from Oviedo to Lèon, and so tomorrow, I will oblige, and ride towards Oviedo(truth be told, I too want to see the caveman graffiti at Altamira. Turns out there appears to be a train line that drops you right at the doorstep of the caves, says my--hopefully accurate this time--road atlas. Besides, how many of you can actually say you've seen some real prehistoric rock paintings live, huh? Yeah, that's what I thought).

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