Stats

Steps: 16786

Distance: 11 km

Walking time: 3.5 hours

Expenses

Breakfast: €5.20

Accommodation: €12

Dinner: €13

Daily total: €30.50

I was planning to get to Estella or Villamayor, the last town before the remote trek to Los Arcos. However, I developed a twinge in my glute coming down a rocky hill. It wasn’t a big “down” like in Roncevalles, but it was enough to cause discomfort. I know my body is starting to compensate and I could feel greater weight on my other leg.

Having stopped for coffee in Lorca, I was checking out accommodations in Estella, as (initially) the preferred town on the route. But I did not like what I was reading. The albergues were large – 80 or 150 beds. I did not want to go there. Ayegui also looked pretty grim in terms of the types of albergues they had. 

What I realised about what I want from this trip is not just the walking, but to experience the hospitality of the hosts and the uniqueness of their accommodations. Having read if the existence of Albergue Casa La Magica – the Magic House that had massage services – how could I pass it up? 

I’m here very early with another USA couple who also wanted an easy day. My “same pace” companion Diaga moved on to her next planned stop in Estella. I liked walking with her. She is walking at exactly the same pace and we were listening to the movie The Way. But I really did not want to stay in Estella. I wanted Magic House. And so, I’ve chosen an early stop. I can leave early tomorrow instead and who knows we can catch up. Hopefully, my body will feel good and strong and I will make good pace to Villamayor. 

I’m alone in the sitting room. It feels like I’ve booked myself a private room. But I am not paying the €50 for a private room. I can be on wifi, post images (hopefully without difficulty), catch up on my days, relax, read and do what I had said I needed to do – nothing. I will have time to explore this smaller town. I can look for a church, a postcard, a correa and a cajero automatico (ATM).  And I can spend time with a Great Dane called Toro. He is the gentlest dog. So soothing.

And I can rest my feet. I know I am trying to take super good care of it. I think it is getting better. Staying on top of blisters is my main objective. If I feel uncomfortable with the look of a blister, I take and easy day. If I feel I cannot walk in an aligned manner, I take a short day. I’d rather this than have my camino end earlier than I had planned. 

Watching the movie The Way whilst walking the way

Such an odd thing to do but very nice on quiet stretches. I think some of the music on The Way is lovely, and it helped me to embed the movie further in my mind. I have also sealed the memory of our short walk with the movie. 

The day was cloudy, cool with a light wind blowing. At some points, it was cold and I am underdressed. But what I love is watching the wind caress the green ears of the wheat. It is as if the fields are telling you a story, if only we can stop and listen. Just beautiful. 

Breeze caressing the tops of wheat fields

 

Map of the world

  

Villatuerta – must stop albergue – The Magic House