Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Roncesvalles to Larrasoaña—Day 2

The next day was a lovely as the first was a struggle. After 10 hours of hiking (I lost the path for about 1.5 hours), I arrived weary but happy at Larrasoaña. The hike was like going through a fairy tale—rolling hills, Ivy-covered stiles, little villages, trickling streams and tinkling cow-bells. At one point, in the middle of the woods, the path turned into a great stone causeway of granite slabs which must have taken someone hours and hours to make. I had morning coffee with three cheerie Czech's—super equipped (they had their own little stove)—who laughed and laughed at the smallest things. I ate lunch in a sheep field, with an English couple, so the sounds of munching was accompanied by the "bong-bong" of the sheep-bells. Later in the afternoon, I had a snack in the shade of a stone house, and as I was eating, 7 little cats ran up and sat so intently in front of me, that I nearly gave them each a piece of the orange I was eating! I am now in the big city of Pamplona after a relatively short but very painful walk. I have some nasty blisters which I want to patch up before tomorrow. God willing, I will make it to Santiago. If not, it will still have been a great adventure. I am getting very fond of my walking stick which one of the villagers gave me in Pintano. I never imagined El Camino to be this difficult, yet this peaceful and satisfying. Each person has a different story, their own way. It is such a daunting thing when you think of 800 km's to walk—all the N. of Spain—little by little...

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