Voie de Vézelay, Day 30





At 6 in the morning, the honking of two cars, loud voices and the overloud beat of music speakers of the cars woke me up. I had enjoyed my solitude of the last couple of weeks so much that this noise was incredible disturbing…………

Again, I had to walk 33 km (20 miles) this day. I needed to make the distance to arrive at Saint-Jean-Pied-de Port latest by July 17.

The Way was leading me through meadows and oak forests and later on to a totally different environment – to vineyards stretching up to the horizon. By coming closer to Spain, the churches also changed to show Spanish influences on their facades.






Long walks on asphalt streets caused my leg muscles to cramp and it was the first time that I took the medicine Alive in order to be able to continue walking. My doubts about the continuation of the Way grew stronger and stronger. At the same time, I was thinking about the millions of people having walked this way over centuries and they had to overcome bigger hassles than just a pain in the leg



Sign of the Way with a marching pilgrim
Sign of the Way with a marching pilgrim



Watch tower
Watch tower



View down the valley of the Dordogne River
View down the valley of the Dordogne River



The Dordogne River separates the two towns, Port-Sainte-Foye-et-Ponchapt and Sainte-Foy-la-Grande. During the Hundred Years War ( 1337 – 1453), when the French kings were fighting against the Kings of England for the right to rule Aquitanien – a stretch of land in the southwest of France – Port-Sainte-Foye-et Ponchapt was built as a fortified city. Remains of the fortification can still be seen today.

The refuge where I stayed overnight was in the first town. It was a big house with 10 beds and I was the only pilgrim in this place. This was a strange feeling. Like always, I signed my name into the Golden Book, the Book of pilgrims.



Dordogne river and the town Sainte-Foy-la Grande
Dordogne river and the town Sainte-Foy-la Grande



Medieval walkways in the town Saint-Foy.
Medieval walkways in the town Saint-Foy.



Pilgrim's book
Pilgrim’s book





Born and raised in a village along the Danube in Austria, Traude Wild soon ventured out into the world. After a two-year program for tourism in Klesheim/Salzburg, she spent nearly a year in South Africa and Namibia. By returning back to Austria, she acquired a Master of Economics at the University of Vienna. After moving to the United States with her four children, she studied Art History at Arizona State University and stayed in the United States for fourteen years. Here, she was teaching Art History in several Universities like Webster University and University of Missouri-St. Louis. Now, she lives partially in Arizona and Vienna and works together with her husband for the University of South-Carolina, Moore School of business as Adjunct Professor organising and leading Study tours in Central Europe. She also teaches at the Sigmund Freud University in Vienna. Since 1999, she is practicing Zen meditation in the lineage of Katagiri Roshi. She loves to hike and to write and is a student of Natalie Goldberg. During her often many weeks long hikes she brings her awareness into the Here and Now, describing her experiences in an authentic way. She loves to walk pilgrimages. The longest hike so far was the 1,400 km long 88 Temple pilgrimage in Shikoku, Japan in 2016.

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