Sometimes WiFi (WeeFee in Spain) doesn’t work too good with a Chromebook. I have two days to catch you up on.
Two mornings ago we left before dawn’s early breaking. We used our headlamps for awhile as the paths in some areas have very sharp and chunky rocks and we don’t need any twisted ankles or falls. The moon was full and it was cool ( both the moon and temperature). We have some coffee out of a vending machine in the albergue and planned on breakfast in the next town. Next town came quickly and the restaurant/cafe/bar was not open. Peggy from California has been walking with us and had been slightly ahead of us. We thought she still must be ahead of us as nothing was open. We lost her. Hours later we were very hungry and stopped on a green hillside to rest. Great spot for a picnic but we had nothing but water. As many have said “The Way provides”. Here comes Peggy with 3 bananas. Lifesaver. There were two German girls about thirty feet away having a picnic and had overheard us saying no food. They came over and gave us a half of baguette. Best lunch, a baguette, banana and refreshing water. Peggy, Dale and I stayed pretty close to each other the rest of the day. Awhile later we came to a great little home business outdoor cafe. Had a refreshing drink and a baguette with a potato and cheese mixture inside. Delicious!! Much of the day was over very rocky paths that I seemed to traverse very slowly. We really didn’t want to walk late in the day because of the heat but there were no accommodations between where we spent the last night and where we were aiming for – Trinidad De Arre. Getting hotter and hotter with very little shade. Soon we crossed a fiver and came to a beautiful little rest area with picnic tables and a restroom. Peggy and I looked at where the Camino trail went and about died. It went up a barren mountain side with no shade. It felt like 90 degrees outside (later found out it was 95 degrees). There was only one vehicle in the rest area and we sent Dale over to see if they were headed for Pamplona. We felt like it would be cheating to hitch a ride for two miles but it was better to “cheat” than die. Dale asked if they were going to Pamplona and they said no. Soon we decided we were going to sleep on the ground in the rest stop. We spread my plastic tablecloth and proceeded to lie down. It was in view of the people in the van. Soon the mother and daughter came over and said they would give us a ride to Pamplona but only two at a time as there were only three seat belts and the fine for no seatbelt is 1000 euro. The ladies stayed with Dale and Peggy and I went with the dad to Pamplona. The family was from Poland and like all the people we have met on the Camino, they were wonderful. Peggy and I sat on a bench in the middle of Pamplona waiting for the van with Dale. About 15 minutes and here comes the van. They wanted no money, just felt happy to help pilgrims. We gave them 15 euro and felt very glad to be near accomodations for the evening. First place we tried was full (completo) but they made a call and got us rooms at a pension. $20 for Peggy in a single room and $40 for Dale and I a separate room. After showers and laundry, Dale and I went to the square around the corner for some wine. We were sitting with our drinks when Laura from Montreal spotted us and came over. Small world. Dale had fixed her blisters the day before. There was a gazebo with a band playing music and all the local families were out for a stroll. On the way back to our pension, we stopped for another drink and some tapas (appetizers). Mine was delicious, prawns and calamari. Dales looked gross, something with anchovies on it. He said it was superb. Soon it was off to bed in a queen size bed not a bunkbed with ten other people in the room.
We had decided to sleep in a bit and Peggy woke us at eight. After a coffee and a potato tortilla dish that is more like a quiche we were ready to start walking about 9am. Peggy had left about three minutes before us and said she’d meet us down the way a bit. She is the only person that had not passed us but we didn’t see her again. Had she dumped us? Did we offend her? Had she wanted to stay in Pamplona longer? We had no idea! Pamplona is beautiful. Parks and squares everywhere. Clean, clean, clean! The Camino is well marked through the town. Not sure if I have mentioned the rash on my ankle area before or not. In the Seattle-Tacoma airport, we talkd with a couple that were also on their way to walk the Camino and she mentioned an ailment that she had had before on the Camino del Norte. It started with a rash in the ankle area and had pain with it. It cut her walk short. For the last three days I have had a red rash on the ankle area and a sharp pain with every step. If it isn’t my hips, knees or feet it’s the ankle. We stopped at a pharmacia and got an ace bandage and Doctor Dale (not only the best husband but also the best doctor) bandaged my ankle. No more ankle pain!! Hurrah!!!! Walked out of Pamplona, into Cizur Menor where we stopped for another coffee. Met Hank from Holland and we all decided to stay at the next albergue about 5-6 miles as I recall. Since there were only sixteen beds I thought i would make reservations. Thought the cafe owner would call but he was not too friendly. A patron came over and walked me around the corner to a phone booth. He called for me and made reservations for us however all three were under “Lynda”. Hank walks fast so we knew he would beat us to the albergue and could be Lynda #1. For the next threeish hours we walked through sunflower fields, rolling hills, past palaces and castles. One church was from the 1200’s!!! Have I mentioned we are having a wonderful time?Soon we arrived at the Posada Ardogi in Zariguiegui. As we entered, Hank (Lynda#1) greeted us and said he thought a friend of ours was here. We went upstairs and there was Peggy. We are all back together again. She had bought three bananas and hoped to catch up with us but was actually ahead of us. The albergue here is really nice. They have akll been so much better than I ever thought they would be. Had some pizza and beer and wine for lunch/dinner. Watch a law and order in Spanish. You don’t really need any words to figure out what happens.
Looking back we can see Pamplona far behind us and in front are the wind turbines and the area where the metal artwork of the pilgrims walking are located. The picture at the top of the blog is what we will be passing tomorrow. It’s going to be a long walk uphill and then downhill. Haven’t found a lot of flat walking yet.
We are feeling stronger and need to pick up the pace if we are going to finish in 60 days. So far we have only gone 53.5 miles (minus the 3 that we cheated and got a ride), just 1/10th of the way. We are going to try to increase our distances daily from now on but the heat really slows us down. Walking in the dark makes it cooler but you miss some sights.
Lynda and Dale