Today we carried our backpacks up and down steep hills from Puente La Reina through quaint villages, and rolling hills of farmland and vineyards, with little shade and high temperatures. Hooray for trekking poles, as there were some steep ascents and descents on rocky tracks. We’re now in Lorca, a halfway point on the Fifth Stage. Our Albergue/hostal (private rooms) is quiet with many pilgrims walking another 13 km to Estella, where we go tomorrow. We left the past two mornings in the early morning light and will continue to rise early, to avoid intense heat, taking a breakfast picnic to eat along the way. Sometimes we walk together and sometimes alone or with others. Finding our own rhythm, meditating, contemplating and observing, all benefits of solo walking time. Buen Camino.