Wednesday, August 7th

Pamplona Refugio

Philippe's final words:
"Yesterday you were on the Camino
 Today you are in the Camino"

No, I don't get it either. Yet.

But the sound of 200 people trying to be quiet, as they get dressed, zip what must be zipped, velcrose what must be velcrosed, flash torches on and off to see what might have disappeared under the bed, is actually quite loud. There's only a handful left. Me, the lame and the crippled, those others pondering wether to give it away or not, and the terminally lazy. Feel like just staying in bed just a little longer, but the cleaning ladies are moving in, and I'm in the way.

But I'm kind of here for a second day in Pamplona, although it'll be a different refugio tonight.

Been wanders. Most things are still closed, apart from bookshops and some of the bar/cafes. Found the Cafe Bruno. It's pleasant.

Walking into town from the refugio takes about 15 minutes, Down the street and through the park, and into the old area. There's new backpackers already moving into town. I have no idea how they manage it, to get here so early. Magic legs, I guess.
Passed the Cafe Iruna, where Hemingway either lived, or wrote, or did himself in. Briefly looked in, but it seemed like the Windsor. The well-heeled, in suits, paying three or four times what I've paid for this coffee and pastry, and not knowing or caring. Maybe I should've had a coffee there, but I know I would've felt out of place, and a tad pretentious, and felt awkward.

At the moment it feels good to be truly on my own again

The singing has stopped. Although it was more a long, slow chant.
A service. In Spanish, and understood even less than the French ones. The cathedral is beautiful. Gothic, it seems. The priests wear white with green robes.

Utterly transfixed.

I think this Cafe is called the Gallipot, at least that's what the bar attendant has on her t-shirt.
From the Cathedral, down to the end of Call d San Anton, the Internet Cafe. Rory wants 'the bull trampling a guy' t-shirt something bad. Okay, then.
Passing sweets shops, lots of them; a butcherie with a window decorated with red and white wrapped salamis. CD shops, only really tempted by the new Cruachan CD, but refrain, as I'd only have to carry it, or mail it home.

A backpacker just walked in. A beginner. His boots are clean, still hanging from his backpack, never worn. He's still wearing his sandals, and bejaysus, they're new too, the soles are still shiny.

Cizur Menor

Already at the next gite, only 4kms from Pamplona. Have a bed. It's nice, I think it may be a private refugio, as the one mentioned in the guide was cômplet, apparently. Cômplet? How can a refugio be cômplet? It was cômplet with young Spanish types. I think they may intend to Fiesta all night anyway.

There's a French guy here, Patrice, and the soles of his feet are blistered to glory, and the skin is literally hanging off. Apparently, his feet got wet when he was crossing the Pyrenees into Roncevalles. Must've rained the day after I crossed, and his shoes were soaked. Anyway, talked for quite a while, into the evening. Talking about work, mostly. And his feet.