Day 2/Sept 13 El Camino/ Leon to La Virgen

It has been a bit rough with the long flight and a cold virus setting in but things are moving in the right direction. Chris has declared we have officially begun the Camino even if it was only 1.7 miles from the train station yesterday to our first Albergue in Leon. Today we have moved on to La Virgen after hiking around old city Leon. We walked many narrow cobbled streets in the old city section of Leon. We went to Mass at the Basillica de San Isadoro. We then toured the Catredal de Santa Maria de Regla. We shopped for fruit in the open air market in the square. had a humorous and frustrating 20 minute walk to the bus to La  Virgen that took two hours to find. ( we took the bus ride as this area is all industrial and now we start moving into the country) Anyway, After getting a bit confused about location, 74 year old Gabriel offered to help. Instead of just pointing us in the right direction he walked along chatting with Jonathan and us through Jonathan for about 1 1/2 mile. He is a pensioner who grew up near our bus stop, moved away and now returned to care for his 96 yr old mother. Along the way we happened to come across his cousin. She had her opinion as well about where to catch the bus. Gabriel continued on until he saw us on the bus. We told him he was our angel Gabriel.

We are now at a very nice Albergue in La Virgen. They have co ed rooms here where as last night the genders were divided. The host showed us a bathroom as we looked around. Later when time to take a shower we all went off to the shower but when I looked around in the bathroom I wondered where are Di, Chris, and Mary? Did they go off somewhere? There was a man getting ready for his shower. I discretely went into the shower and adjusted the curtain so I could get my clothes off without getting wet. When I emerged later he was outside the shower drying his hairy bum. Another man came to use the shower, came in, saw me and turned around and left. I washed my clothes, face and finished up. I went back to the room and still did not see my group. When I walked down the hall I saw a closed door with a drawing of a woman on it. I opened it and there they all were. They were all laughing because Di had taken her shower and they found her dressing in front of an open door for all the world to see. I added my faux pas of taking my shower in the men’s room to the list and we all had peels of laughter.

There is much to acclimate to with sharing a sleeping room with so many. Lights, darkness, finding your stuff in the dark, flashlights, hand washing, snoring, early risers, later risers. We are learning.

We have to get some walking in as the pilgrim meals are three course meals and we have been eating those. An appetizer of a salad or pasta with red sauce and sometimes tuna or soup. Then a choice of a main dish and then dessert. I have been fortunate to have chicken both nights. Di had an orange filled trout and Jonathan had rabbit.

Tonight we decided to add yoga stretches to our daily routine.

We are all well and happy and tomorrow will be.

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