Today was the longest day yet. We woke up in what we endearingly called the ‘snoring chamber’ at 5:15am ready to hit the trail by 6am. Once packed and ready, in the dark not to wake the other snoring pilgrims, we heard the booming sound of thunder and then instant downpour. We looked at each other and knowingly pulled out our rain jackets and pack covers, we were starting this early morning in the rain. After about two hours of slow, wet slugging through the rainy camino trail we started seeing a break in the clouds and the rain lightened up. At that moment a familiar figure started up the hill waving. “Is that Felix? How did catch up with us and why isn’t he wet?” He left at 7 once the rain let up and kept a much quicker pace than us. We had our camino buddy again and he lifted us out of our bad soggy moods as the sun lifted the rain clouds.
Around 9 am we found a cafeteria in the small pueblo of Los Archos and it was lovely. There is nothing like a hot cup of coffee (con leche-style) in a warm place after hiking in the rain for hours. The Camino has made me so thankful for the small things and aware of how much I am in need others hospitality.
From Los Archos we decided to add 10 extra km and try to make it to Viana, the pueblo outside of the big university city of Logroño. Without the hours of music Felix played from his phone I don’t think we could have made it in 8ish hours. We sang “Sweet Caroline” with full gusto to passing pilgrims, fists pumps to Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer” over the valley of vineyards, and belted Lion King songs to each other, amongst many more memorable moments. It was a long day, but a truly fun day. We will miss you and your music Felix!
We finally made it to Viana and found a Christian-run organic tea shop. Jon shared a section of his sourdough starter with the San Franciscan shop owner Debbie. She will make the shop’s communion bread with it. After a nice tea break we had soup and went to bed.
Tomorrow is a rest day in Logroño!