It was fun to just hang out in a beautiful town. I got my Spanish SIM card sorted for my phone, bought a new poncho since I tore my old one struggling through the bushes and went to the cathedral. I was resting my knee too. I checked in to the same hostel- the converted church. It is run by a charity that supports people withCerebral Palsy. I like the air, the spirit in here. Of course I lost my first Camino companions with whom I started but I will have dinner tonight with a nice lady from Florida who managed to get a spectacular blister that held her back a bit too. Here are some pics of the interior of the spectacular cathedral. At the tomb of the king and queen I note her faithful hounds at her feet and …. A lion at his!
It was better, much better than the day before. Not having anything to eat or drink until 11 am did not help but, boy did that spinach tortilla taste good when I finally got it. I was lucky go get a bed at one of the biggest albergues in Plampona and have decided to stay an extra day. I feel there is a lot to see here plus I want to get my telephone situation worked out. Had dinner with my Irish friends
Today it poured rain and I walked 22km over hill and dale and over a slippery bed of rocks. Horror! But I had 2 Irish angels who helped me by going fast and making jokes. We are in Zubiri now and off to Pamplona tomorrow. The lady who keeps the hotel put on her mask and kissed and hugged me. I have a double bed in a private room. Bliss!
Ah, the Camino Frances doesn’t let you in that easily. To set off in pouring rain is challenging. Oh well, only 8 km you think but that’s a lot of rain! The pass over the Mountains from France to Spain is split into two days for some modern pilgrims. Others do the whole 27 km in one day! Too much for me so I was happy to sleep at the fabled Orisson lodging. The bonus was that the second day of the trek was brilliantly sunny and the views were magnificent. Now just waking at Roncesvalles with no idea where I will sleep tonight. The Camino provides they say. We will see.
Got poles and snacks for the assault on the mountain today. Rain is forecast but the day after should be very good. Walking with others so we encourage each other. Met a nice Yorkshireman walking for a sick child. Conversation at the dinner table was eclectic..,French,English,Spanish, Yorkshire and bewildered sign language for 2 unilingual Chinese pilgrims. Time to get up. and walk!
My flight was uneventful although the scene in Montreal was pretty chaotic. Many people seemed to be leaving town with all their worldly possessions . I should have thought more carefully about those zip off shirts/ pants though. As if my artificial hip wasn’t enough for the scanner to catch. My entry into France was pretty surprising in that I was subject to no Covid checks at all. My carefully amassed documents and phone scan and two forms filled out on the plane never left my bag. I had applied for a French equivalent of our Quebec vaccination pass. In spite of submitting many documents I never got it but now I wonder how much it is being used? It was a beautiful sunny day here and I went out for a walk in the neighborhood. However after several restless nights a nap was more important. Many thanks to kind Yasmina for her hospitality. tomorrow I’ll take the train down to St Jean Pied de Port. Two sleeps there and then …..up the mountain we go!
In eight days I will start a journey that has been a long time in the planning. I am a little bit excited, a little bit scared and a big bit curious. I wonder what is coming to me on this famous Camino de Santiago. One thing I have already learned is how to discard things I thought were essential. There simply isn’t room. My back simply can’t carry them, so the weeklong task of packing and unpacking begins. Burn Camino, Peligrina