Sunday, May 13, 2012

End of first week and days off in Bilbao

Our "gear"...2 backpacks, 4 poles
Fields of rape seed

We've survived our first week and have already walked 165K to Logrono where we will meet my brother Richard and Mei Mei who will walk with us for a week. It has been the most different week of our lives and so far we are enjoying it, though I will have to admit that it is not easy. The difference of walking with a backpack that weighs about 20 lbs with water and snacks makes it much different.
typical view...see windmills in the distance

We have experienced many different kinds of terrain and weather. We had rain, mud and heat....on different days. Each makes for a little slower going. I will let the pictures and captions tell the story. There are many, but I have heard from so many of you that you like the pictures best and I love them all so enjoy. The scenery is absolutely magnificent which makes walking much more fun. We have heard that this will not always be true.
at the top of a hill....sculptures mae of metal
of peregrinos or pilgrims

We take each day as it comes and I am learning to plan less and to trust that everything will always work out OK. The saying goes...."the Camino will provide" and this seems to be true everyday.

Richard has had two blisters on the back of his feet due to poorly fitting socks and I had a few days of sore shins...I guess from backpack and long walking. I had a very wierd accident one night...probably the first on the camino. I was reaching for my light which I had in my shoe in a room of just the two of us and the next thing I knew I was head first hitting my head on the tiled floor. I scraped both of my hands and have a big bump on my head and had one day of very sore neck but am fine to tell the story. I was so scared when it happened realizing how bad the story could have been so I thanked the powers that are for my luck. I was knotted up in my silk sleep sheet and sleeping bag. My lesson is to use either one or the other. They are both so slippery and I guess I just slide out of bed. Thankfully I was on the bottom bunk. I have a pretty strong rule and this is that I will stay anywhere as long as I am in the bottom bunk. No top for me. The other day we were in a hostal with 3 tiers!
In one of the many small villages

Puenta la Reina - early in the morning

fields of poppies dot the landscape

View of a village ahead. Typical scene

Snails walking the same pace as this pilgrim

Little alters everywhere. Not sure why the
shoe was left. Probably a tired pilgrim

Now we are in wine country
A bit about the food....Spain is no place for vegans or vegetarians. I am keeping note of what we are eating so that I can write about it for the veg far so good as long as we find albergues with kitchens. I have cooked quite a few nights and I take a few leftovers for lunch or eat nuts and loads of fruit. It is easy to buy fresh fruit and vegetables in each of the small villages but the restaurants do not seem to like to cook them!
me eating a baggie of lentils from the night before

Sandwich made by pilgrims we passed on the  way

my feet and the mud

A fountain with wine for all pilgrims

Our room of 5 one night

Early morning leaving Villamajor de Monjardin

the moon in the morning

I am always by my side

I  was who you are, you will be what I am...
a sign outside a cemetery

Friends relaxing in Viana

Mary Magdalene in Viana

old marker for the Camino
Casco Viejo - old part of Bilbao
We traveled on Saturday from Logrono to Bilbao after walking 10k early in the morning. This is an incredibly beautiful city which has become very well known for the Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank O.Gehry. It is very hard to capture the city in pictures but you will see some of the many that I have taken.
We also visited a Basque history museum and the Bellas Artes Art Museum. Many for one day but since we are only here for a short time we do not want to miss these great museums.

The city is very lively this Sunday as everyday in Spain. All the big and small places, however, close up for siesta everyday from 2 to 4 or 5 and then reopen again in the evening.
Sunday morning in Bilbao

Walking bridge in Bilbao

The Guggenheim Museum

Outside the Guggenheim

So friends, I look forward to telling you more as we travel together with Rich and Mei Mei. Hope all are well and we love hearing from you and will carry you with us on our travels. Happy Mothers Day to all of you mothers and children. We miss our mothers on this special day and every day.


  1. Love Ricardo in the mustard field and your shadow self on "stilts"!


  2. Lovely pictures and fun travels... Would love a piece of that wonderful looking sandwich!!!!