It’s a “three for one” blog posting today. No internet access last night in Puente la Reina, so you’re getting Cheryl’s report on yesterday’s journey and Linda’s and mine on today’s in one go. Scroll down to read theirs before coming back to this post!
Also, sorry that there are no photos to accompany any of today’s entries, but the computer we are working does not have a USB port for me to plug my camera into, so we’ll have to get you caught up with the sights another day. Hopefully tomorrow!
Today I set a challenge for myself, people. I decided I was going to walk to Estella with The Flash (aka Linda) …
Let me just say this from the outset … if you are going to “walk with Linda”, then you are going to walk, beeyatch. Linda does not stroll. She does not amble; she does not saunter; nor does she promenade. She walks your arse off. I managed to keep pace with her for the first part of the morning at least, as far as Cirauqui, and after that, had her in sight for most of the time, so I’m quite pleased with myself really. We entered Estella together and made it to the hotel at the same time even. Boo – yah!
(And Linda, love, if you were ratcheting down the speed to make slo-boy feel better about himself, just keep it to yourself! Every friendship thrives as much on what is left unsaid as on what is said!)
So, yet another day of great weather … we had warm temperatures with a cool breeze and the sun behind the clouds for most of the day. I actually got quite burnt yesterday, so a trip to the pharmacy is going to be in order later this afternoon for some sunscreen, some afterburn cream, and a new neck scarf to replace the one I’ve somehow managed to mislay.
I am absolutely amazed at the number of pilgrims on the road with us. It makes sense, since all the talk of the Holy Year would have put most off from walking in the summer; the folks who were looking for more solitude and reflection have obviously waited until now, just like us, but still there really are quite a lot of people on the Camino right now.
I’ve lost track of time, as tends to happen on the Camino. I mentioned to Cheryl and Linda that at this point I only remember what day it is by which mysteries of the rosary I am meditating on as I walk.
It’s funny too, because it’s really only around the fourth day in that pilgrims start to become comfortable with other pilgrims. When you start out in St. Jean or Roncesvalles, there’s always a bit of wariness involved. You’re like dogs, checking each other out but keeping your distance, just in case. You’ve probably spent a great deal of time planning your journey, dreaming about it and anticipating what it’s going to be like, and suddenly you’re here sharing it with a bunch of strangers from other countries. Back home, you were unique, and lots of folks probably expressed surprise and admiration for what it was that you were proposing to do (if they didn’t think you were just plain bonkers!). Once on the ground here, though, you’re just one of a huge number of pilgrims walking the route
What to say about Estella? I love this city and am always happy when I can spend some time here, even more so since my friend César was named the pastor of the parish church of San Pedro de la Rúa last year and it means that we’ll likely have a chance to get together later this evening.
Cheryl decided to rest in her room at lunchtime, so Linda and I had a bit of lunch in the cafeteria of our hotel. She nipped off afterwards for a siesta while I sat down to write this today’s entry. We’re planning on a visit to Estella later this evening, and I’m hoping to get to Mass in as well. I’ll leave it to the ladies to give you their tales of the trail. Ultreia and keep us in your prayers!