Two days of short walks (15 km each). It has been sunny and mid-20s. On the first night I had some unfriendly roommates but on the next evening at Albergue Puente in Puente La Reina (quite nice) I ran into a very agreeable crowd, half of whom are Canadians. One fellow is retired from the armed forces and he takes charge of logistics. His wife is very social and makes sure everyone is happy. There’s a 20-something fellow with his grandfather. A couple of Germans, a South African and some Koreans. A Spaniard who hasn’t lived in Spain for many years does translations and gives Spanish history and cultural commentary to the group. One of the Canadians seems out of her natural habitat. Somewhere in her 50s, she is very well groomed (unlike some of us) and wears gold jewelry, lipstick, carefully cut hair, and full-on fingernails. She walked the Camino last year and is doing it again although she doesn’t radiate joy in the process. I suspect there is a story there, but she is not giving it away yet.
Yesterday and today were both about 22 km. I walked virtually the whole time by myself, which I enjoy. However, several times during the day I stopped for rest and refreshment with others, and tonight a group will go out to dinner again.
I really like this crowd but maybe will make a point of a stopping somewhere different tomorrow night. I want to keep the surprises coming. After 3 days with this crowd I sometimes feel like I’m on a school field trip – dorms and all!