Day 1 St. Jean to Roncevaux

Right, left, right, left, walking the Camino de Santiago one step at a time I dragged my body into the courtyard of the convent of Roncevaux.  I was the last one in our group of walkers to pass through the gate and as I did so a woman was smiling and waving me forward, while a man approached me.

In my head I’m thinking, who are these people?!  Am I so delirious with exhaustion I don’t recognize them?  The man walked right up to me, gently held my face in his hands and rattled off what I believed were lovely thoughts.  I finally managed to understand he was asking me if I had walked from St. Jean Pied de Port and I said, “Yes.”  And then he smiled and just talked to me as if I understood, which although I didn’t understand his words, I understood his heart. It’s the Camino.

I wish I could share with you some profoundly philosophical words of wisdom about today, but all I can tell you is I feel as if I gave birth to a mountain.

The happy helpers in the Pilgrims Office, in St. Jean Pied de Port, encouraged us to take the mountain pass because the weather would be warm and sunny, and the views would be spectacular and maybe we would see snow. And they said it would take 7 or 8 hours.  It took us a solid 10 hours because maybe we would see snow, was in actuality, 4 hours of trekking through knee-deep snow packs, running water, ankle high mud and it rained just for good measure.

April 12, 2015

Today we walked 16 miles

Highest Elevation: 4,688 feet

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The Summit!

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