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El Camino: Day 13-14 (San Juan de Ortega to Burgos)

Posted on 26 September 2012 by christie

Burgos Cathedral

Burgos 12-15th Century Gothic Cathedral

The alarm buzzed and we laid in bed still pondering whether we should walk or take a taxi to Burgos (27.6 km away). I still felt terrible with a head cold and sore throat. I rushed to look out the window, in the back of my mind hoping it was pouring down rain as it would be an easier decision. The sky looked like it had cleared for the most part, but it was still freezing. On one hand I didn’t want to give in, take a taxi and miss walking a day of the Camino. On the other hand, I was sick, feeling awful and walking in the cold could make me even worse. The last thing I wanted was to jeopardize making it to Compostella. We also didn’t have any warm fleece or jacket. It was the first time we thought we had under packed.

We finally decided that hopping a taxi was the smart way to go. In the end everyone’s Camino is their own and one person’s Camino is very different from the next. The significance of the Camino is not how fast you walk or how many exact kilometers you cover. It’s about your personal journey through the time you spend on the Camino. Every journey is different and every person creates their own Camino. It is not a competition (although some take it as one). There are no rules. There are no time constraints. There is no right or wrong. There is only “My Camino”. Continue Reading

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El Camino: Day 12 (Belorado to San Juan de Ortega)

Posted on 25 September 2012 by christie

Rain is coming

Rain in the forecast for our walk from Belorado

Belorado’s weather forecast looked bleak for today’s 24 kilometer walk to San Juan de Ortega. Sure enough, we stepped out of Casa Waslala Pension and dark clouds towered over us. We were freezing as we wrapped ourselves up in our warmest clothes, which actually weren’t too warm. This was the first time on the Camino we found ourselves unprepared for the cold weather. We both wished we had those Patagonia fleeces we sent back to the U.S. months ago while we were in the heat of Asia.

El Pajaro Bar

Taking a break at El Pajaro Bar in Villafranca de Montes de Oca

With the cold and strong winds, we decided to make today’s walk a fast one. We breezed past the first few villages; Tosantos (4.8km), Villambista (1.9km), and Espinosa del Camino (1.6km). Our stomachs were growling for breakfast, however nothing seemed to be open in any of the villages. We pushed on another 4 km to Villafranca de Montes de Oca, the last village before the 12 km steep trek through Los Montes de Oca to San Juan de Ortega. Here we found a local bar, El Pajaro, where we took a short break……. while warming up with hot tea and tortilla sandwiches. All the other pilgrims had the same idea as the bar was packed with pilgrims getting ready for the long trek ahead. Continue Reading

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