Lost and found. Pontremoli to Aulla.
32 km, 10 hours of walking, medieval Roman roads, two swims and Sylvie gets lost.
It was a long day. I found a flowing stream to swim in and later a small waterfall to cool off. Both times I lost my hair tie, and then I lost Sylvie. Three things. The VF is a quiet Camino so after waiting 30 minutes and no whatsapp call, I started to worry. Felipe from Italy came walking by, also starting from Pontremoli and said he had definitely not seen a Signora. I continued to Aulla, summoned Christian, who was enjoying a beer in town near the end of our walk. I was ready to call the police when Sylvie called to say a local had sent her on a detour and “shortcut” through the bush. She finally arrived towards 7pm scratched and bloodied from her unintended bushwalk. Relief. It was not unlike losing each other on the Camino de Santiago for a night and day!
We stayed in the Abbazia Di San Caprasio in Aulla which dates back to the year one thousand. Aulla is one of the oldest places of hospitality and prayer on the Via Francigena. Between 990 and 994 Sigerico, the Archbishop Of Canterbury was in Aulla. His abbey already contained the Saint Caprasio relics which came from Provence.
We met a French lady in the Abbazia who is doing the VF by bus. She leaves each day in her hiking gear with her backpack. Her legs can’t handle the walking anymore but her heart leads her on.