Day 8 - Najera

Day 8 – Najera

Narera on the BanksI had a good, yet hard,  time of it today; 30 km in 6 hours. Not too bad.

I left Logroño at 5:45 this morning. My roommates from last night (Danny, Mette, and Birgit) were a bit surprised by how fast and early I was ready to head out this morning. Love travelling light…

I walked through the lovely downtown streets of Logroño in the early morning dark and I was surprised by the number of people in the streets. They were obviously coming home from a night of partying and were singing, clapping (a group activity in Spain), and talking. Everyone was in their late teens and early twenties. They were no causing any problems and it was all very social. This is apparently normal in Spain on the weekend.

I had a little bit of trouble finding the yellow arrows in the dark, but I finally found myself walking by a protected bird sanctuary. It was very pretty relaxing. Sat down and had a short rest.

I arrived in Navarette and I had a great pastry and orange juice. Life is good and my pace increased.

I met Anne and Mo near the end of the day, but I didn’t stay with them as I was in hustle mode, but Anne said that when we get to town she would check on my blisters. She is my hero.

After arriving in Najera, doing some laundry, and settling in, I called Sandy. Hearing her voice always makes the pain and fatigue disappear. I then met with Anne, Mo, and Kim and we had a few beers in the plaza. We talked about our travels and watched the locals set up for a medieval faire. Good beer, companionship, and nice weather. Yup, life is good.

Later, I had dinner with Morag, Peter, Kim, Anne, and Mo at a local restaurant that specializes in regional dishes.
I am currently relaxing in my bunk for a change, listening to some Gordon Lightfoot. I am in a weird mood. I think as I am currently having a love/hate relationship with the Camino. I miss Sandy and my family and sometimes the Camino feels like nothing more than some trial I have for some unknown reason decided to undertake with seeing my family being the final reward.

Strangely, after spending two nights in a house and a hotel it is so much more relaxing to be in an albergue. I guess it has to do with shared experience with those around you; the pain, the exhilarations, the fears, and the planning. Everyone has a common purpose.

I noted to myself today that there is no such thing as a solo endeavor. Everything you do can be traced to others in some way.

Anne in NajeraThe Camino is not just a physical challenge that leads to betterment of some sort, but it also challenges us emotionally, physiologically, and spiritually.

It may not provide any ready answers, but it does help to frame the questions. As Mette said, it seems to encourage you to look at thinks in a backwards fashion; much like a proofreader who will read a sentence backwards to spot errors.

So, Will it change my life? I don’t know, perhaps is already has. I have met some amazing, wonderful, and strange people though, and from each of these I hope to add a piece to the puzzle.

Conclusions, mostly partial:

  • I had to go a long way for something I could say “I did that” about. But I missed what was there right from the beginning, my family and friends.
  • I want to learn to Tango
  • I really for some reason want to watch Practical Magic with Sandy on a sunny day while drinking Coronas
  • I would like to be better at listening to my kids.
  • Not all lives are as glamorous and exciting as others, but they all involve people who care for each other
  • I’m not as kind and caring as I pretend to be at times
  • I love Sandy; even more than I thought was possible.

I wish I could see the lives of my children past my death. I hate not knowing how a story ends. I guess this is why death scares me so much, I just want to know what happens. Well that, and the notion of Hell or just plain nothingness have something to do with it too.

Soundscape: Bells