Today was simply beautiful. I left Estella at about 8:30 and after a bit of a hill through oak and pine trees, the path wandered through fields of wheat, grapes, olives, what looked like almond trees and some other plant that may be peas or a bean of some sort. I passed a rest area that had taps for fresh water and red wine – something for the body and something for the spirit. The weather was perfect — just a few clouds in the sky, gentle breezes and temperatures in the 60’s. Most of the day I walked in just shorts and a short sleeve shirt. I arrived in Los Arcos at 2:00 so only a 5 ½ hour walk today.
The Camino Frances was joined in Puente la Reina with the Camino from Jaca and the increase in traffic was noticable today. A couple days ago I’d estimate that there were likely 5 to 10 pilgrims in a half mile stretch of the path. Today there were maybe twice that number.
I’m blessed that I am not having foot problems but many, maybe most, are. I constantly pass other pilgrims sitting on the side of the path changing or adding bandages to their feet. And at rest stops, most everyone takes off their shoes and socks to let things cool down and virtually everyone has bandages on one or both feet. It’s funny how something so simple can take on such importance while on this 500 mile journey.
People’s stories are so interesting. To hear about the challenges and turmoil some of my fellow pilgrims have faced makes me humble and feel so blessed to have the life and the family I’ve been given. It makes any small challenges each of us face get even smaller.
Keep me in your prayers and know your are in mine.