Archive for July 6th, 2011
I palpable wave of sadness washed through my body a few minutes after the bus moved off. I looked at the side of the road for the camino and it’s walkers and felt my whole body fill with a sense of loss. Walking to the bus, having breakfast planning our next move, buying stuff for lunch had all been fine until the moment I started to head toward Santiago by bus. I felt like I’d given up, that somehow I was cheating, that I wouldn’t get to feel the intense experience that comes with walking the camino. I tried to reconcile matters by saying we had no choice in the matter but it was hard to shake this feeling of loss.
As the bus drove on I found myself searching the countryside for signs of the Camino but also dreading seeing it. Like an addict having to give up an addiction I was finding this bus ride hard. It became harder still when some German peregrino’s we’d met in Orbanos boarded the bus. I didn’t begrudge them taking the bus, how could I when we were, but they seemed to take the bus so easily, as if it were an easy matter not to walk. Then they joked about staying in the albergue when they arrived in Logroño, perhaps even taking the last beds before tired walkers arrived. I know they were joking but I found it hard to take. I dreaded meeting fellow peregrinos. I felt fake taking the bus, somehow sullied by not walking. Very strange to feel this way because I don’t begrudge anyone taking a bus or bicycle, car or even doing the Camino with a tour guide – it’s just that for me the Camino was always about walking.
Be that as it may I tried to put a brave face on it. The Camino was not an option for the time being. Instead Cheeky and I would get the opportunity to bus through done beautiful parts of Spain, staying in little Pensions in ages old cities. As this idea began to seep in I began to reconcile myself with our new style of Camino and I began to enjoy the day.
In Logroño we found a little Pension in the old city with wide open windows looking onto the busy Calle’s below. We headed out for pinchos (tapas) and vino tinto (red wine) and generally just enjoyed the day in each other’s company. Cheeky was in good spirits although her knees still bothered her and the steps of the Pension proved challenging.
We spent the afternoon walking the old town thoroughly enjoying our European experience. I’d obviously been the Europe before but for Cheeky all this was new and I was seeing it all anew through her eyes. Today was a really enjoyable day. I still miss not walking but that hasn’t, and won’t, stop me from enjoying the trip.
Logrono’s old town is quite small but the little Calle’s are filled with great tapas bars which are washed down with the excellent local Riojan wine. How could I not enjoy holidaying here?