Hiking St. Olavsleden : Markabygda to Borras

This morning the sun shone down on us again with even warmer temperatures predicted.

We made breakfast in the well equipped kitchen at the church hall and prepared our rucksacks for the day.

When we were ready to go, we called Marie and Peder who came to show us around the church. The architect for the church was Marie’s great grandfather, who was buried in the cemetery outside.

The church was even more stunning on the inside, the nicest I think I have ever stepped foot in. The ceiling was covered in gold stars and delicately hand painted story scenes were present all around. We chatted a lot about the history of the area and of the church itself.

Afterwards we said goodbye to Peder and Marie and began our hike to Borrås.

I really enjoyed our stay in the hall, the layout of the dorm made me think of the hospitals of old times, it was a place you felt very cared for. Nothing extravagant, but catered for your every need. It reminded me of being a child, when I used to attend a nursery in a church hall. A comforting place to be.

We began hiking in the sunshine and it wasn’t long before we needed to take our boots off and rest a little.

We walked as far as we could before stopping for lunch amongst the blueberries on the side of the forest road.

After lunch I felt very drained all of a sudden in the heat and my small toe on my right foot was causing me a lot of pain. I’d discovered it to be very swollen and red, with a small black area under the skin. It was painful to touch even very lightly. I’m not sure if it’s an infection, I’m thinking it could be a fracture, though I have no idea how I’ve hurt it other than by walking.

After walking some more, I decided that if the opportunity arose to hitch-hike the rest of the way, that I should take it, as walking was only making my toe worse and potentially ruining my chances of making it into Trondheim on foot at all.

After what felt like an age, a lady drove past in a white pickup. I stuck my thumb out and asked her if she was heading my way. Luckily she was and she agreed to give me a ride. I hopped in, my forehead glistening with sweat. I was so grateful that she had been so kind as to take me the rest of the way.

With no public transport options around here, you really are at the mercy of strangers to help you. It is a very heartwarming experience to ask for and accept help from a stranger. You realise that by nature people are very kind and want to help each other. Which is so important in an age where all we seem to hear are stories of people causing harm to each other.

This lady is my trail Angel for today. One of many along this road.

She took me Borrås after a brief stop at her beautiful cabin. I was welcomed by Sulfried who owns the pilgrim accommodation at Borras. She didn’t speak any English but this gave me a great opportunity to practise Norwegian which I have been learning for almost a year using Babbel.

We managed to communicate the essentials and her personality shone through, it was a lot of fun talking to her.

In the evening when Angeliqa arrived, I hobbled up to a memorial near the house which marked an area where some planes were shot down and crashed in World War II. I believe they were British planes, and some of the wreckage was still on the ground marked by a simple sign.

We went back to the cabin and made a simple dinner of warmed tinned spaghetti with meatballs and bread.

Sulfried brought us a surprise dessert of sugared lingonberries with cream. She sat with us while we ate making conversation and showing us the guest book, before we said goodnight and headed to bed.

I am hoping that a good nights rest  will do me and my foot some good and that I’ll be able to walk on it tomorrow without causing further damage or pain. Only a few days left now on the trail and I need to make the most of my time here in Norway.

PS. I have a charity page for the trip if you want to help me help some great charities!

https://www.sponsorme.co.uk/leannedowns/leanne-is-walking-from-sweden-to-norway-charity-page.aspx

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