That’s the name of the hostel I am staying at in Logroño. It is clean, newly remodeled, efficient (e,g. big drawers under the bunk beds, big enough to hold backpack plus a lot more) and right next to center of town. But I have not had a glass of wine yet. Too many selections. Easier to order beer.

The roadside motel folks were kind enough to give us wayward pilgrims a ride to the center of Los Arcos this morning, but too early to see the magnificent altar of the Santa María church. So, even after the best sleep of the trip, I was not in best mood. It did not help that 5 km later, at a coffee stop, the proprietor had a fit that I put some trash into his waste battery collection. I departed and began getting a little upset about the pilgrim graffiti. “Shine bright! You are the light!” I am not a light thanks, so don’t tell me what to do. “Follow Jesus!” I’d rather follow the Camino trail markings and prefer you not to deface them with your suggestions.”I love you Kevin.” Well, your settling for a loser. And too many more that I have tried to forget.

Things took a turn for the better when I came across Casita Lucia in the middle of a forest patch. Had a great coffee and felt truly relaxed when I resumed my trek. Then I heard bells ringing in the distance which actually turned out to be a guitar player serenading the pilgrims. Then, as I entered Viana, the penultimate stop, I noticed a barricade surrounding an area full of dirt and people of all ages dressed in white with red bandanas. Turns out the village was celebrating their harvest festival in the honor of La Virgen de La Nieva with an encierro, or bull run through the main street. Fun to watch, though the bulls were not as big and wild as at Pamplona. That evening they planned a capea, where they allow a cow into the barricaded area and let people go and play dodgebull and other games meant to annoy the poor animal. But all in fun and an escape, I suppose, from the drudgery of life. Boy, I was feeling much better by now!

Arriving in Logroño I checked into the alberge and then wandered around town for a few hours. I visited the Museo de La Rioja which depicted the changes in the region’s culture since Roman times. Interesting and right up my alley. I ran into a few familiar pilgrims and met a few new ones, mainly my roommates. No communal dinner needed here with all the restaurants and pintxo places.

That brings me to now, sitting in the Winederful and finishing this blog. Too early to go to bed and too late to go out. Ever have that feeling? Well, maybe I have time for one glass of wine.

Casita Lucia, where life started getting better! They even had freshly toasted almonds – still in the shell but supplies a hammer to crack them open.
Everywhere I go the grapes are fat and juicy and sweet. Have I already mentioned that?
Not quite Pamplona, is it Jack?

7 thoughts on “Winederful

  1. Some ups and downs today. But lots of sweetness too. Those grapes look great and tasty. Hope you had a good sleep.


  2. Dear Cousin, what a wonderful journey and commentary. Keep up the good postings and take care of yourself. I would say something about the inn keeper- – but I’ll keep it Christian. Still hot in Sin City, Mike


  3. Oh yes. I remember those few people who went out of their way to be mean or unkind. I encountered only 2. But did they make me sad/upset/cranky. But not for long… thank goodness.


  4. Thank you Jim for your wonderful posts and photos. We will be starting our Camino (same route as yours) on October 1 and I wonder how our experiences each day will be. I hope to be as positive and strong as you are each day. You are an inspiration to many.


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