Saturday, 15 June 2013

Day 16: Villafranca - Burgos

Yes, I did actually make it onto Burgos today. I slept in - a combination of the wine and my phone battery running out - and woke up to find the room empty. I panicked, thinking that it must be the middle of the morning, and sped through the shower (yes, I do need a shower twice a day on the Camino) before my freshly charged phone told me it was only 7.45am. As I left the room I saw Kate and Cameron, but opted against joining them for breakfast as I knew the key to making it to Burgos was getting going in the morning. And besides, I had four dates in my pocket - they'd keep me going until the first cafe at St. Juan, 12km down the route. 

It was a beautiful, cool morning, and the path to St. Juan went through pine forests - the air was thick with the scent of the trees, and as I looked to the right I could see that above the tree line was a thick cloud of early morning mist, and the top blades of the wind turbines were poking though. No sign of how they were connected to the ground, but random metal blades towering out of the clouds. It was one of the most eerie and beautiful sights I've ever seen. 

St. Juan is a church and monastery complex, with a cafe that was a bit of a Camino pilgrims' stop. I bumped into Lesley, a Canadian flautist who has been walking at roughly the same pace as me, and we decided to press on to Burgos together. Actually she is a bit faster than me, but I quite like stretching the legs and knocking off a kilometre every ten minutes or so. We reached the crest that overlooks Burgos, dropped down past the airport and hit the main road into town, via a Spanish greasy spoon cafe. 

Alas the Burgos municipal albergue was full, so we've split the bill for a cheap hotel room - I'm looking at the paintwork as I type, and yes, it is decidedly budget! But we are looking forward to a good night of sleep, free from enthusiastic pilgrims rustling around with their bags at five in the morning.