Day 7: Cirauqui to Villamayor de Monjardin (Luquin)
The highlights of today are that we managed to walk over 16 miles, found the magical monk wine spigot, and were denied lodging because all the alburgues were full (aka completo)!
The walk was beautiful and peaceful throughout the day passing through a few towns.
The fountain of wine at Bodegas Irache was inaugurated in 1991 and has been providing pilgrims with free wine along a side route since. It is good too! What a nice gesture for them to extend to those walking the Camino. They only supply 100 liters a day so we were lucky to have some left when we arrived.
I guess we used up all our luck on the wine because after a long long day, we came to find out both alburgues were full in Villamayor. We were so disappointed.
I realize at the end of the day, my body reacts like my bladder when I have to use the bathroom. You know the feeling. You can hold it and feel okay until you know a bathroom is close then all of a sudden… it’s on. Well that apparently happens on the Camino for me.
I was fine walking then feeling relieved once we arrived only to be told it was full (insert super sad face here). We checked the Casa Rural (more upscale and private than the hostels), but it was full too. The man who runs the one albergue suggested we walk to another town and called ahead to make sure there were rooms available.
So we hit the road…literally. It was a little over a mile along a quiet road. Our luck came back because we ended up at a brand new albergue with a room and big bathroom all to ourselves. It was GLORIOUS. We each had nice long showers before heading to bed.
Tomorrow is a new day.
Day 8: Luquin to Torres del Rio
As we head out, we are all a bit achy from yesterday’s extended hike. It starts out cool and I’m happy we brought layers. A coat, hat and gloves come in handy.
Since we were rerouted to the scenic path last night, we make our way back to the main route. As the paths merge, we meet up with the tall Englishman that we’ve befriended on the trip. He cracks us up; his new story includes his dinner the previous night where two pilgrims offered to cook dinner. He says he never thought someone would think pistachios, tuna and pasta would go together yet somehow that’s what he found himself eating. He talks for awhile but his long strides eventually outpace us.
Birds are happily singing a tune as we march on the trail. The air is crisp but the sun is warm. It will be about a thirteen mile hike without much elevation change.
A group of pilgrims from Asia who don’t speak much English ahead of us hear it is my mother-in-law’s birthday and start singing, “Happy Birthday.” As beautiful as the countryside is, I think these are the moments that will stand out.
And the moments like right now, the stench of smelly feet permeating through the hostel will probably be the ones I forget.
Life is what you make it. The bad can always outweigh the good if you let it. Today I choose to let cheerful singing outweigh the stinky feet.