|A spare and lovely landscape|
|Pruned plane tree; a unique and clever example|
|Look who's in the window of this straw bale house!|
We arrived at this albergue about an hour ago, and I find myself thankful for the little things- a great hot shower, a plug in the link (to wash out a few clothes), a clothesline that has vacant space, and a small room with just 4 beds- none of them bunk beds. In addition, our roommates are a couple German guys we´ve been leap frogging for nearly the whole time we´ve been walking. We feel we know them, although their English is limited and our German more so. Somehow we make ourselves understood and we like each other. We´re all pretty happy with this place. The bathroom is co-ed, which has been typical, but at least the showers have opaque doors. We were in one albergue where the doors were transparent. That was a bit much for this uptight American. Speaking of Americans, we have now officially met 3 Americans. One was a woman from Hawaii who just moved to France. The other two were a nice couple who were born in Korea but have lived in the US for about 40 years. They live near LA.
One of the more common topics of conversation a step beyond ¨where are you from and where did you start walking and are you planning to go all the way to Santiago??¨is Why are you walking the Camino? Many people do it for the cultural experience (as we are), but there are many other reasons. A 54 year old woman from Spain is giving up on her dream of adopting a child from Russia after 5 years and about $16,000 invested in futility; an Australian woman is dealing with the tragic death of her son and the loss of her husband to Alzheimers; a Danish woman lost her husband to stomach cancer a year ago just as they were completing a boat they were building to sail around the world; a Dutch woman is on her own after leaving a husband who can´t seem to give up alcohol. Then there are some who are looking for changes in career or meaningful activity in their retirement. We also met a French couple who were walking the Camino to celebrate 40 years of marriage. Just yesterday we met two 30 something people from Berlin who met on the Camino and can´t seem to walk half a mile without stopping to smooch. Pretty sweet.
For the past week there have been many Spaniards on the Camino, as most of them have the week off for Easter. It´s been interesting and fun having them älong, but it puts some strain on the accommodations. Gives us a little taste of what it must be like in summer.
I think I may be able to add some pictures from this computer. I´ll try that later. For now, Adios.
OK; I´m back, and I´ve been trying for 20 minutes to download pictures. The computer keeps freezing up. Not only that, but I can´t get on to Comcast to check e-mail. It doesn´t help that all the error messages, etc are in Spanish. I´m giving up for now. I think I´ll check Google to learn a bit more about the storks that live atop the church bell towers in these parts. I have 16 more minutes of computer time, so I can learn quite a lot, I think!