Stage: Los Arcos – Logroño
Day seven started with the two danish boys getting up and that woke me up as well… It was 04:30 in the morning, despite my good nights sleep I was still not fully coherent I think.. but my routine of pre-packing my backpack before going to bed meant that I only needed to stuff my sleeping bag in its bag and pack it and put on the clothes that I had set aside for the day ahead.
I was the third one out the front door, right after the danish boys. Shortly after there were a small group of us there… prepping for the day, putting on boots and checking backpacks. It is the polite way of doing things as doing this inside would be more noisy and might wake people up. I checked that I had the essentials, wallet, phone, headphones and Donut and then spent a few euros at the vending machine getting a drink and some light snacks just in case. Fifteen minutes after I got up I was walking out of Los Arcos .. it was refreshingly cool .. so much so that for the first time I had to put on my fleece sweater, dark too.. I had to use my headlamp too. Which made me feel justified in bringing it, I had at times gotten a bit conscious about the weight of my backpack (it wasn’t bothering me, nor did it feel heavy) but all the same it was about 13~15kg .. about double the average.. so every time I needed an item that I had previously considered to leave behind I felt justified in my planning and packing skills.
For most of the day I walked by myself, an early start combined with a quick pace… I did stay longer at the cafe I had breakfast and lunch… I started running into people again… but the solitude on the first part felt good …
As I continued to walk, I saw these two stones along the road, with names and faces on them… there was a third one as well with an email address on it and instructions to e-mail them if I’d taken a picture with Emma & Wilson. I did and shortly after I got a reply… it was from the Hungarians I’d walked with when I ended up Villatuerta … ..
On the last part of the walk into Logroño I met up with Jørgen again.. we had some brief conversations and then parted but it was clear that both of us planned to stop in Logroño, Anniken and Viggo had planned similarly he told me during our chats… but not where they planned to stay… I found a place, it had yet too open.. so people had started “camping” out in front just relaxing and staying in the shadows .. after a bit the people running the place opened up the main gate and let us hang out in the porch area… which had a nice shallow pool for cooling you feet… We did the usual of lining up our backpacks for the queue and waited.. there was not much for me to do and it was too hot to even think about going out into the town to do sightseeing or shopping for that matter, those that were used to 40C weather ventured out, but for a Scandinavian who was just beginning to acclimatize to this new and unusual thing called “heat” it was not an option.
So after getting my passport stamped, I navigated to my assigned bed… now this was the most claustrophobic albergue I’d been in so far. It was verging on impractical, with just enough room for one person to walk between the beds… But I decided I’d do my laundry first and then get on with getting a shower and eventually some food.
At the washing basins I met Nicole and we had a brief chat, what you could call the camino standard questionnaire… name, where you are from, starting point … and some idle chat after that… As I gotten my laundry done I plonked my butt down on a chair and started writing some postcards.. and a bit in my journal … I presumably found a place to eat some dinner as well but I have no current memory of this nor did I make a note of it in my journal.
Before long it was time to sort the now dried laundry and pack my backpack once again, for me it is a nice routine to have since I can be quite forgetful, and packing my back in the evening when everyone is awake still, and with lights on is a lot more practical than by a small led torch in the morning whilst trying not to wake everyone.
I was by now well and truly on the camino…..