Fields of Gold

Trip Start Sep 05, 2012
Trip End May 16, 2013

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Flag of Spain  , Castile-León,
Sunday, October 14, 2012

Well, another 4 or 5 days, another 100 or so kilometres under our belts. And socks. And aching, aching muscles. We are currently enjoying the hell out of our first official rest day of our camino so far, whiling away a cold, rainy, quiet Sunday in the great little city of Burgos. We were originally unconvinced by the general consensus among our on-again, off-again hiking partners that Burgos should be the first non-hiking, non-dorm, non-Pilgrimīs menu stop, since our legs were finally starting to get into the groove, so to speak, and it didnīt feel necessary. Then someone planted the idea of a decent hotel, with no constant cacophony of snoring, and real towels, and somewhere along the road it worked its way into our self-concious until suddenly we couldnīt imagine doing anything but lying around contemplating our second nap of the day while trying to make out all the nautical witticisms of NCIS in Spanish.

Plus, Burgos turned out to be a much more impressive place than we had expected. Nice old town, very green river area, and one gi-normous Cathedral that seems to blend every conceivable architectural style into one enormous conglomeration of saints, babies, gargoyles and spikes. Imposing.

Anyway, just a few of the highlights of the last few days:

  • Santo Domingo de Calzada - where a complex legend about a chicken coming back from the dead somehow causing a young man to live through a hanging has resulted in 700 or 800 years of chickens being penned in a glass cage above the pews of the church like a group of low rent Amsterdam sex workers.
  • Iīve started easing my way into becoming a wine drinker. My teeth are reaching a pleasing shade of purple.
  • Had our first day of real rain on Friday. Unpleasant, although it did give us a break from complaining about the afternoon heat. Something had to fill the void.
  • Watched one of the Lord of the Rings movies in its entirety in Spanish while drinking far too many beer and getting quite drunk. Yes, quite.
  • Our hike into Burgos was very scenic, although for the first time gave us all sorts of route options which, rather than provide a nice way of customizing the hike to our tastes, instead practically debilitated us with indecision after 12 days of blindly following yellow arrows with the single minded deliberation of a dog pissing on trees.
  • Finally, as I mentioned, we finally got our own hotel room and luxuriated in the opportunity to sleep in this morning...until the ripe hour of 7 and a half. Habits, much like ingrown hairs, die hard.
Tomorrow we hit the road again and will soon reach the dreaded Meseta, a week or so of featureless prairie completely lacking in shade, useful cities or hills higher than our head. If Iīm not mistaken it eventually leads us into Swift Current. See you there.

If you are interested in reading more please check out my book Random Acts of Travel : Featuring Trepidation, Hammocks and Spitting.

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