We have been in Spain now for two and one half weeks; time flies when you are kept so busy you don’t know if you are having fun or simply at the point of exhaustion! Actually we do know we are both tired and having fun, working at the Albergue with a group of fun and friendly people from the Netherlands plus Sarah from Ohio.
The Pilgrims pour in every day and fill our hostel (called an albergue here). We rotate jobs. I have been an assistant cook twice and cut a finger both times, plus a burn thrown in for good measure last night. At this rate they will have to send me home before I empty the first aid kit prematurely.
Besides our work duties, we get to meet and hang out with the pilgrims from around the world that pass through. We visit, sometimes help doctor blisters, hand out ice packs for sore knees and twisted ankles, pray for them, and at night give each a gospel of John in their native language.
Julee made Egg Plant Lasagna last night for 28 people. At 6:30 PM she tested it and turned to me and said “this is a disaster”. But when we served it at 7:10 it was perfect and everyone absolutely raved over it. She and I cleaned this morning, her on bathrooms and me sweeping and mopping floors, which I can usually do without hurting myself.
We have had some free time in Spain too, all of which has been wonderful. We are in the Navarre region in the northeast, in and around the Basque region. We spent two nights in Logrono before starting at the hostel, and we have made two sightseeing trips locally with the team, once to the ancient and picturesque village of Vianna, and once up into the mountains to see the eagles. We have also taken long hikes on our two days off, the day before yesterday to Los Arcos and back (25km) through breathtaking countryside. And so pictures worth at least a thousand words follow…
above and below, pics from our time in Logrono
Bert and the team in Vianna, above and below
below, the plaza in Vianna
above, Julee with our village of Villamayor de Monjardin in the background
above and below, the Navarre region from our mountain top view
Above, the albergue (hostel) as the pilgrims first see it when climbing up into the village
Above, Julee on the trail of the Camino during our walk to Los Arcos, pilgrim in the background. Below, taking a break in Los Arcos, having Sangria on the plaza (just for you, Melody and Susan!)