Are we there yet?

I think we might be in the “gut it out” phase. The first week is supposed to be the worst and I’ve been worsting yesterday and today.  

The days start cold, with frost on the cars and layers that are gradually shed down to shorts and short sleeves. Yesterday, we walked along a path up above a river, a bench cut in the woods mostly. It was considered flat but I would have called it “flat”… i. e. not very flat. We’ve found some of the Spanish measurements to be interpretive, …. enter town center to discover you are just 7 km from your final destination only to walk 3 km to the next town only to find you are still just 7 km away from your goal. And etcetera. Note photo 1 and photo 2 were taken nearly at a days distance. The second one 790 km. Was probably taken half a day later than the first.

That says 765 km to Santiago…
This was taken half a day later…
I’ve carefully monitored my left knee and hip these last months and mostly they are in great shape. Cortisone shot to the hip was just what the doctor ordered, but 10 soul sucking Kilometers on crushed stones and pavement into Pamplona yesterday left both knees tender. This morning’s climbing left my brand new right knee issue very unhappy. At mid morning we stopped into a farmacia, here, much more like a doctor than like CVS. One of our new friends went with me to translate and we tried several different solutions til we had a good knee brace. But now a third day of steep descending on uneven rocky terrain left my right knee hobbled frankly, and I limped sadly this afternoon into our current locale. Such that we are going to take a day of respite tomorrow to see what emerges.

We hit the Alto del Perdon today, an iconic Camino stop.

Before and after we ambled along through sunny and flowery farmland. 


The killer descent…


 The albergues so far have each been good in their own way. Inexpensive, hospitable, friendly. Hot rain showers in one followed by train-like pods in the next. Here weare behind   bamboo screens to a common hallway. Rustic in a sense but completely bearable. Much less primitive than anticipated.
In 6 days (5 official) we’ve hiked 135 km so far…

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2 thoughts on “Are we there yet?

  1. I am loving following along with you, both the narrative and the photos. Thank you for allowing us this vicarious journey! As for the knee (an arena in which I have far too much experience) – lots of ibuprofen (or any anti-inflammatory) and do they have ice at the auberges? That would be good at the end of the day. Downhill is brutal on knees. Things will improve as you get stronger and leaner, maybe put more weight on those poles and take it slow for a few days. Can you lighten your load (Joycee? or hire a goat? ;)) for a few days? So proud of you two – tell Joycee we look forward to her musings too. Hang in there. xo

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    1. Several days we’ve carried just stripped down versions of our packs. We take most of the gear and the sleep sacks and put them in the other. That way we have only first aid and jackets. It works well except that you have to commit to a specific distance so you can catch up to your bag.

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