Presently sitting in the shade in front of a small bar sipping on cold Belgium Stella Artois beer after a long hot day of preparation and travel to our starting point, Lodève. Our hosts tell us that they are presently experiencing unusually hot weather more often seen in late July. Makes me happy, Annemarie not so much. A week ago temperatures of 17-18 with rain were forecast, but something has obviously changed. Do you suppose the weather gods appreciate my dislike for walking in rain and mud?
We caught the tram and then a bus that took us to Lodève where we found our simple but friendly accommodation before setting out to obtain our departing stamp in our credentials from the cathedral. We were surprised at the beauty of this cathedral which was built in the late 13thC and restored in the 17thC.
Inside we found the sun streaming through the beautiful stain glass windows and better still we enjoyed the peace as we had it all to ourselves. A time for quiet reflection and mental preparation for the journey ahead.
The light cascaded against the opposite walls and across the heavy floors. The colours were simply stunning.
I wasn’t expecting this.
Afterwards we obtained our stamp and went for a wander of this very old town. It’s situated at the confluence of the Soulondre and Lergue Rivers which offer protection on three sides, making it an ideal and easily protected settlement location.
We also discovered a store already named for us, and we will have to give this some serious though:)
The beginning: we have an idea of what’s ahead for us in this journey, and we also know that our ideas and the reality may match up or may be quite far apart. The early stage of Alzheimer’s is somewhat similar - there is information but it’s hard to take it all in, and each experience is unique. In each instance it requires big or small adjustments; tomorrow we will start early despite our still jet-lagged state, in the hopes of mitigating the impact of the heat. An individual with Alzheimer’s may decide to write more notes to themselves to counteract memory loss. In the beginning the adjustments required of us are relatively small, but we know there will be bigger challenges ahead.
And now it’s almost 20:00 and these two pelerins are rather hungry. It will be an early start tomorrow and we are really looking forward to beginning. I would be remiss if I didn’t say that the fund raising portion of our Camino For Alzheimer’s Awareness has already raised $7,920 before we’ve taken our first steps. Thank you for the generosity and support from so many. You’ve touched us deeply.