Go ahead, it’s free to wine

Day 6

I awoke rested and happy this morning.  The hotel was clean and quiet – I got a good 9 hours, and I really, really needed it.  While it’s branded as a “hostel”, it is anything but.  Really a nice room and compares well to other properties at which I’ve stayed in big cities in Spain (that cost a lot more money…).

The owner doesn’t provide breakfast, and for the very small size that is no surprise.  She told me about a place down the street named Namas Te that would be open by 8.  I was a bit concerned with it bein Sunday, but I was pleased to discover that they were open as advertised.  I sated myself with a banana, orange juice and a croissant and skipped on the tea.  I was off and walking by 8:30.  

I was glad they were open as today provided few towns and places to feed and water.  After the obligatory stop at the wine & water font (for real – left spigot for vino, right for agua – both free and provided by the bodega) that backs to the wine museum, I was off again.  

I chose the road less traveled – well, it chose me as I turned left when the main camino turned right, but the trail was still marked as part of the Camino and labeled Jacob’s Way.  It goes up a mountainside through a forest, though not nearly as steep was the first day.  The forest was nice shade and cover that the main path doesn’t have.  The only drawback is that one doesn’t reach a town for a considerable distance.  Not a problem since I had breakfast and still have a bag of nuts.

Really nice views across the valleys and over to the other mountains.  Spring is springing well – the hay is growing, wheat and other crops are up, and more flowers are out.  I got lunch at Luquin at a nice little bar and restaurant in the town.  No sandwich today – a “tortilla Espanola” which is an frittata/omelette like dish with potatoes, ham, eggs, and cheese. Perfect.  A few km after that town, the two paths rejoined and we walked through vineyards and olive groves, all getting leaves and vines after the long winter.  

The path I took was truly the road less traveled.  But I still met a fief other hikers, including a woman from Russia that’s currently living I Greece and a couple of folks from Canada.  Saw my friends from Switzerland a bit later.

It was a perfect day for walking.  Clear blue sky, started off about 3 degrees and got to about 20 this afternoon.  A bit of wind but not like yesterday.

The hotel in Los Arcos tonight is cheap and not fancy at all.  But it will do.  It has wonderful hot water and a comfortable bed.  They do have a washing machine (4 euro/load), which I gladly used.  Tomorrow is a long day, though I have a day rest planned at the destination.  Still need to book a room in Logrono for tomorrow & next night.  It’s a big town so I expect no issues.

The hotel reception said that the cathedral was open 5-7 this evening, but it was not.  Apparently because it was Sunday.  But there in the square outside the cathedral was a group of Americans – several of which I had already met on the trail, including my friends from Nashville.  So I joined the crowd for drinks and a pizza (yes, I ate the whole pizza).  Then back to the room by 8 where I’ve been struggling to book a hotel in Logrono.  Finally accomplished, it’ll be off to bed.  Long walk tomorrow and the room here is chilly.  And once again, the Wi-Fi in this hotel stinks.