This has been absolutely astounding and it is only day three. The first day was 27KM, yesterday was 40KM, and today was 27KM. I am on schedule to finish on the 13th of October. I fly home on the 15th. The Hostels have been great. In Roncesvalles, there were 185 beds in very nice old building connected to a large church. The showers, laundry, and kitchen were most impressive. The cost was 10 Euros. Last night was also great. There were 30 beds and great facilities. It was also connected to a very cool church. It was 8 Euros. Today, I am in a hotel that has Pilgrim beds in the basement. There are about 24 and it already has a great feeling. Upon arrival, a lady asked me if I needed some laundry done. She had a small load and was just offering to share. The gratitude of everyone is overwhelming.
I walked with a woman from South Africa for most of the day. She told me her life story and it was quite emotional. After walking for about 4 hours, she had a complete emotional breakdown. While crying, she asked me to leave. I think that stirring up all of her feelings was just too overwhelming. The story is too long for the blog, but one I will remember till death. I plan to fill my journal with her words.
I shared a taxi with a man from Germany on day one. We walked together for most of the first day. I told him goodbye yesterday morning and he gave me a scallop shell to hang from my pack. This is a common symbol for the Camino. He brought his from Germany, but they are readily available on the trail. Today, there were probably 5 villages over 27KM with at least 4 Albergues (hostels). When I found my bed, he was two bunks over. What are the chances? I heard the woman from South Africa is here too, but I have not seen her.
My body is sore. I bought a walking stick and my hand has some black and blue spots. It also makes my triceps very sore. Knees are killing me and the downhill is difficult. Thankfully, there are no blisters. Many people have terrible problems with blisters.
I am about 22 KM past Pamplona. Walking through the city was magnificent. There was a very cool monument that I remember from the movie, “The Way”. On a final note, most of you know that I have a huge appetite. For some reason, I do not find my usual appetite and have not been eating as much as normal. The servings are definitely smaller, but I can get anything at a store. I still find myself eating lite. I have no explanation.