It was the second day of my Camino which started in Le Puy-en-Velay. It was hot over 30C and I was trying to make it to Le Sauvage. I had only walked about 23K when I reached the little village of Le Villeret d’Apchier and still had another 8K to Le Sauvage. I stopped at a small fountain and drank the fresh cold water. After a few minutes I put my backpack on and walked about 20 meters to a turn going out of town. I saw a Gite that looked inviting.
My ego said go on you can make it to Le Sauvage. I took 10 steps and laughed at my ego and walked back to Auberge des 2 Pèlerins (The 2 Pilgrims). Boy was that a good move.
The owners, Lucette and Jean-Louis, are the two pilgrims and they oozed love for the Camino and by extension the pilgrims staying at their home. I was greeted with a drink, lemon citric concentrate mixed with water. Jean Louis spoke no English but he had two volunteers, Juergen from Germany and Eva Michelle from Canada that were quite friendly and spoke English. Eva set me up with 2 cotton sheets and a thick terry cloth towels ( both which are rare luxuries on the Camino ). They had excellent wifi but I poured a second lemon drink and went outside and sat on the patio chatting with the very friendly Eva and Lucette and enjoying the view of the green hilly countryside:
Just before dinner I went inside and noticed they had a feet massage machine. Why not. The massage was heavenly and rarer than towels. At this point I was thinking this could be one of the best Auberge’s ever in my Camino experience which totals about 47 nights now.
Dinner was an epicurean delight. A glass of Rose was offered to each diner at the Communal Table of about 18 including the owners and volunteers. Lucette moved me from the middle of the table to the end by Juergen and Eva so I had someone to speak English with. The first course was small pieces of bread with a tomato or olive spread. Second course was a exceptionally fresh delicious salad of lettuce, tomato, and melon. Third course was a creamy cheesy salmon and zucchini lasagna. I would kill for this recipe. Fourth course was a plate of different cheeses explained in detail by Jean-Louis. And of course there was plenty of red wine. Fifth course was baked apple with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream.
While enjoying some Chamomile tea after this incredible feast Jean Louis brought out his guitar and he and Lucette slowly led us in a group singing of the the French Camino song “Ultreia”. Then Lucette who has the voice of an angel sang a song followed by the two of them singing a melody about Santiago ( another Camino tune ). I think Jean-Louis could have sang all night. A few of the pilgrims songs sang as well.
Well we were all pilgrims so the party ended around 9 and we drifted off to our beds which were clean and above average and I liked how there were only 3 in my room.
Breakfast was not served until 7:30 so I told Lucette I would not be there as I like to depart by 6:15. She insisted I needed a good breakfast and told me she would leave it out for me in the basement. The next morning I went downstairs at 6 and as promised there was breakfast waiting for me; a cut above the usual pilgrim breakfast of bread and jam. There was that but also 2 homemade fruit breads that were excellent along with some homemade yoghurt and fresh fruit and green tea as I requested.
Sadly I left this wonderful Auberge. Everything about it was quite special. I believe through their love of The Camino they have created a special place of high energy and love and compassion that is interconnected with the Camino spirit.
Shortly after I left Auberge des 2 Pèlerins I was walking and feeling such joy when I made my first turn and saw this rainbow:
If you ever walk the Chemin de Le Puy please stop in at Auberge 2 Pèlerins and give Jean-Louis and Lucette a hug from me.