On 10 October I heard clip-clopping down our street and looked up to see a pair of mules and a pair of what I assumed were pilgrims passing our front window. I rushed out and snapped a photo of them disappearing down the street.
The next day, returning to Le Grand Pressigny at the end of a 10 kilometre walk with the hiking club, I was thrilled to discover the 'pilgrims' and their mules at the café on the market place. The mules were snacking idly on linden tree leaves and the 'pilgrims' were drinking coffee.
They are clearly well used to people coming up to them and wanting to know who they are and what they are doing. It turns out that they had started in the Pyrenees and were walking to Brittany. They aren't really pilgrims, at least not in the religious sense. I didn't manage to get to the bottom of why they were doing it, nor did I catch their names.
The mules, on the other hand, are called Amulette and Flora. Amulette is smaller than Flora because Flora's mother was a big Breton draught horse breed. The mules will require reshoeing four times over the course of the journey. I wish now I had asked all sorts of other questions about how they managed to find places to stop, how they found food for the mules and how many kilometres they did per day. The mules were charming creatures, very well behaved and placid.
We are also on Instagram, so check us out to see a regularly updated selection of our very best photos.