Voie de Vézelay, Day 9



Today, I had to walk 24 miles so I got up early. My alarm clock was not necessary – at 5:30, the alarm in the house went off. The noise was loud and shrill. What happened? A fire? Or did somebody try to break in? After a while, the fire department came and turned it off. There was only the other pilgrim Michelle and myself in the house. It was strange.



After a short breakfast in the kitchen of the municipal house, I left at 6 am. It was great to feel the cool breeze of the morning air, smell the tangy scent of the walnut trees lining the path and watch the curious cows peaking over the fence- a fence made by blackberry shrubs.



Village of Acre
Village of Acre










At noon, I arrived at Châtre, a medieval town built on a hill. As in every town, I followed the shell placed on the pedestrian walkway to guide the pilgrim through town. This town also has a museum of the well- known female writer George Sand, a pseudonym for Aurore Dupin. She lived in the 19th century.



Medieval town Châtre
Medieval town Châtre



The shell as a trail marker in towns
The shell as a trail marker in towns


After Châtre, the roads were mainly unpaved. This was great! The smell of hey always filled the air.






One of many hey rolls
One of many hey rolls


When I arrived in Neuvy-Saint-Sépulchre, I was so tired that I was just interested in going to bed. I had ordered a place to stay and the lady of the refuge did pick me up, as agreed on the phone, at the entrance to the church. But I could not stay with her – family problems, she said. She took me to office of the camping place where I stayed overnight. It was the worst place of my whole pilgrimage – dirty, in the window lived a nest of wasps and the bed was so bad that I pulled the mattress down to the floor. But I had the best sleep of my whole pilgrimage that night.


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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