Date: 24 April 2018
Walked from: Padrón
Walked to: Pontevedra
It was a cracking walk through the verdant hills and riversides of southern Galicia today (with the lovely riverside inlet of Arcade a particular highlight) topped by the excellent – and very funny – company of Vanessa and Dimitri, a Latvian air steward and her sailor boyfriend, from Riga.
I’d seen them both for the first time yesterday, where I stopped to have lunch, and I knew they spoke English. As I went to walk past them today, I noticed the matching toy ducks they both carried (heads sticking out, naturally, lest they suffocate) in their backpacks, and I slowed down for a chat. I was so glad I did; today’s walk was lovely, but it was the company of these two while we walked towards the beautiful old town of Pontevedra that really made my day.
Vanessa’s English is particularly excellent, so I asked her where she learnt it. Surely not just from school. ‘Carton Network’ came the straight-faced reply, possibly with a side of wry smile thrown in for good measure. As is usually the case when you get the chance to really talk to someone from another country, you learn that many of us share the same outlooks, values and senses of humour – it’s just those damn language barriers that get in our way. Nationalism can go do one. As they may or may not say on the Cartoon Network…