My flight to Madrid leaves Logan at 5:20pm tomorrow evening (Wednesday) and I am due into Madrid at 6:20am. From there, I will take a bus directly to Pamplona. Because the bus doesn’t leave the airport until noontime, I’ve booked a few hours in the arrivals lounge, where I can get a shower, some food, charge my phone and maybe get a couple hours of sleep. Once on the bus, I can relax and let the whole thing really sink in. The buses are modern and comfortable Mercedes Benz models.
I’ll be staying two nights in Pamplona. I hope to see some of the city, but apparently the weather is going to be dreadful while I am there! Cold, rainy and possibly snow showers! However, I will have time to get over any jet lag, pick up a pair of hiking poles and anything I’ve forgotten and perhaps walk around the cathedral. I’ve booked a private room in the “Hostal Arriazu” right across the street from the Plaza de Castillo.
I plan to start walking on Saturday April 2. And for the first couple of days, it looks like I may be walking in cold, wet and possibly snowy weather. I’ll be wearing all my layers and my poncho…which will have the benefit of making my pack lighter. However, I’ll be walking into spring…and the sun looks like it may shine through by my second day.
Although many people who walk the Camino leave nightly accommodations to chance (or to Providence, I suppose) I felt much more comfortable making definite reservations for most nights. Some albergues still are not operating at full capacity, I’ll be walking during Holy Week and because I’m a very slow walker, I don’t want to risk getting into a town late and finding no bed available…or only an upper bunk. If I find myself walking much faster than anticipated, I can always adjust the reservations as I go. But I feel much less stressed knowing that I have a place waiting for me!
HERE is my homemade itinerary,
complete with towns, mileage and where I hope to stay each night!
My pack is packed…final weight just under 14lbs. I’ve checked into my flight and filled out the required health form. I have my passport, vaccination card, credit card, ATM card and €50 in cash. I have my distance glasses, my reading glasses, a tiny notebook and pen and the all-important phone charger. Gloves, wool buff, wool socks and a sun hat. Sun glasses, too. And my Camino “Credential”, which will get stamped at every stop until I reach Santiago. Praying my heart, mind…and feet…are ready for the journey.