A late start because it meant a giant breakfast and it will be another short day. Because we went on an alternate route yesterday it was impossible to follow the guide book, so we asked locals for the direction of our next sleep over and followed the camino signs.

The first chill in the air as we leave the factory and look for signs. A good clue if there aren’t any, is to find a ‘via Roma’ because we’re going to Rome, and they seem to ensure that this street is on the camino. A long stretch out of town and straight into a ‘1 car in 5 mins. road’.

Soon we were off the road and walking down steep washed out gullies that turned into tracks through plowed fields; more olive groves and vineyards now very heavy with black grapes; across shaded creeks, dark rain forest and long gravel roads. At one stage we spent some time walking over smooth, irregularly shaped rocks pockmarked with moss here and there – beautiful.

Even though the area is lush, the soil looking eatable, there was evidence that long dry stone walls were built from once was a very rocky area, those shapes I just mentioned giving these walls an exquisite look. We sauntered through some shop free villages which hasn’t been usual, so they are therefore very quiet, very private and very pristine.

Our sleep over was high up on a hill with a large piazza-plateau as the town with one street circling the plateau with tiny ones interconnecting them both – a bit like an alien spaceship that’s sitting on a few legs (the streets) – quite a sight and a history, the village of Monterriggioni filled with walkers, cyclists and tourists walking and sitting at one of the three outside eating places.

But we didn’t eat there. Instead my clever wife chose a restaurant underneath us with a wifi area out the back and underneath our window. There is no wifi where we are staying so we are using the password of the eatery below to access the internet – clever girl.

A young Israeli and an older Frenchman have just arrived (both walkers), and we are discussing maps. The Frenchman, like our French friends have metre long Italian maps for each section and unlike ours, highlights the shorter routes – not sure whether the Italians are in a hurry, unfit or just smart!!