Do You Know the Way to Santiago?

I want to post one more thing. Following the signs for the Way can be difficult sometimes. I walked alone again today which was so peaceful and enjoyable. One of the great things and not so great things about me is I tend to go along in life living in the moment and not thinking much ahead. This is not a good characteristic to have when walking the Camino. At one point, I was merrily walking along a lake only to discover I had gone the wrong way. I went left at the lake and all the other peregrinos went right. I turned around and quickly got back in rank with the crowd. This put me on guard! So, I was very careful to watch for arrows. Well, that is until I got into this one beautiful vineyard. Suddenly, I realized I hadn’t seen any arrows for awhile. So, I turned around and retraced my path. This scenario happened about 5-6 times today! Every time though, I was on the right path and would quickly run into other pilgrims. 

***A note to parents: This post is not to cause worry! I promise I am never in danger. There are always people a bit ahead and a bit behind. So please! There is no need for worry! 😄

I started taking photos of some of the different arrows/signs that you have to keep your eyes out for. You’ll see why sometimes they are hard to find! 

And one more because this was so fun to come around the corner and find! 

Saturday’s Photos

Pretty tired tonight after walking another 20 miles so I’ll just post photos. Tomorrow will be an easy 13 miles. 

Sunrise photos with one ominous bull! 

The little town of Naverrete

We’ve heard it’s about a week from harvest and the grapes are plentiful and refreshingly delicious! Today was another day of walking through vineyards.

I mean, come on! ❤️

One Week and 90 Miles Down!

Oh man! It’s been an incredible week and everything I had hoped this experience would be! Today was our longest trek…20 miles. It was long but my knees held up just fine. I walked slowly down every hill, depending on my poles and braces to protect my knees. The walk was beautiful and it was the first day Ryan and I walked separately. On this walk, no one is ever really alone as people are always before and after you. 
Today we walked to Logroños which is the wine region so most of today we walked through vineyards. At one point, I heard a lady behind me singing. As she came up beside me I could tell she was a local. She was singing a song about the Camino to me. Once she was finished, she walked over and picked a big clump of grapes. She handed them to me, said, “Buen Camino” and went on her way. It was very sweet and memorable. 

The other thing that is so beautiful about this experience is the people. So many countries and languages are represented on this walk. We all begin as strangers separated by language and culture. As time has gone by, it’s as if we’ve blended ourselves into our own nationality. We are joined by the challenge, the pain, the success, the small living quarters, and the hope of reaching Santiago. The barrier of language disappears and we communicate through a knowing expression or sympathetic touch. We have a new language, a new culture. It’s really quite extraordinary! 

Solo walking!

Along the walk people discard broken down or painful boots. Sometimes people leave other odd things behind! 

623 kilometers to go and feeling strong! 

The Camino singer picking grapes for me! 

There’s a place for everything especially boots and poles! 

This guy is from Italy. He and Ryan’s common language is German. He was trying to do the walk in 20 days instead of 30 and messed up his legs. My leg is also in view with an ice pack wrapped around it!

Friday’s Photos

The wifi was bad last night so these are photos from yesterday. Fortunately, the walk was fairly easy. Just after leaving Estella we came to the wine fountain which is another iconic site on the Camino. We were there around 7:30 AM so we had our drink a bit early! Some people drink from their shells, some directly from the fountain and others fill their water bottles. I’ll post the video that Ryan took of me directly on FB. 

This is how we find out path. 

We stayed here in Los Arcos. Doris and Tatai were Ryan and my first roommates in St Jean Pied de Port. We have walked the path together each day at different paces but generally end up in the same albergue each night. 

We cooked our own dinner last night. It was fun sharing a small kitchen with people we’ve been walking with for the past 6 days. Ryan playing cards with other pilgrims. 

This cat was so cute until he jumped on the table and grabbed our cheese. 

Estella Update

1) A sweet lady who was soaking her feet in ice, filled a plastic bag with ice for my knees.

2) Deeper humility: At the urging of fellow Pilgrims tonight, I’ve decided to send my bag by taxi tomorrow to the next town. Walking without the weight will help my knees heal. 

I’ve also added some photos of some of the people we’ve been travelling with. This table represents Japan, Israel, Denmark, Italy, South Africa and Australia.