an idiot in spain

santiago diaries

Wednesday, 13th September.
Ian does his bit to improve Australian-Canadian relations

We left the refugio in the pre-dawn. Well, Noelle and Barb left a minute or two before me, I told them I'd catch up with them. It had taken a herculean effort on my part to get out of bed at that ungodly hour, and I was impresed that I managed to leave the refugio at about 7am.

The sun rose behind us, and we talked and talked as we walked and walked. The girls have maps of the Camino! And a little booklet on all the refugios! I am suitably impressed. I only have my little guidebook and enough Spanish phrasebooks to sink a battleship.

Later in the morning we met up with Marcello the Brazilian. Marcello spoke Portugese, Spanish and English. And he had a sixth sense, but more about that later. We wanted to find a shop in the small village we were in. Marcello found a lady, sitting on her (or someone else's, we neither knew nor cared) doorstep, and asked her directions to the shop. We followed the directions and found a house with plastic furniture outside. And a Coke machine. But no sign of a shop. So we sat down, and broke out some of our food.

All of a sudden we heard some ferocious barking from around the corner of the house. Then a white van pulled up outside and honked its horn. A lady appeared from the house and didn't seem at all surprised that four sweaty pilgrims were flopped in her plastic furniture. She took some bread from the bread van, and told us that you have to ring the doorbell to get into the shop. She let us in, we didn't have to ring the bell, and we bought some food. I bought some yoghurt drink, which was sooooooo gooooooood.

We hammered the last section of our walk today and arrived at Estella at 12:25pm. The refugio opened soon after, we checked in and promptly fell asleep. After my little siesta, I walked into the old town and scuffed around for a while.

The refugio had a kitchen, so we bought the ingredients for spaghetti carbonara (I would have preferred a fettucini, but you have to make do with what you can find) and whipped one up back at the refugio.

After dinner, we went back into town to see what was goin' down. Answer: not a lot. There was a concert on at the church but we were too tight to fork out for admission. But tragedy struck while we were outside the church: Barb dropped Sassy!

Sassy is the name of Barb's camera. It's a point-and-shoot affair, with Sassy emblazoned aross the front. When Sassy hit the ground the back popped open, and the latch broke. Not good.

The bunks in the refugio were paired up, so you slept next to someone else (as opposed to in a single bunk bed). As the lights went out I turned to Barb, who was lying next to me, and said "I'm going to tell all my friends that I slept with this Canadian chick!"
"Well I guess I'll tell all my friends that I slept with this Australian guy!" Barb replied.
"Just tell them that I was good." I said, and fell asleep.