Long March into Burgos

I was able to catch up on the queen’s funeral highlights today after a relatively early arrival in Burgos. The Last Post and the piper’s lament were quite moving. I have had similar moments along the Camino almost every day. But they are as difficult to describe as the emotion I felt listening to that lone piper. Anyway, she was an amazing woman.

The cocks were crowing as Lisa and I departed the El Peregrino alberge in Atapuerca which I would highly recommend. We had a tough climb over a very rocky path as the sun came up. I tried to stick to the goat path alongside the pilgrims path, but stunted trees next to it kept brushing my hat off. At last we came to Campañuela del Rio Pico where we stopped for breakfast. It was one of the best layouts of breakfast foods I have seen. The tortilla had tomatoes, onions and mushrooms and they had a large variety of bocadillos, or sandwiches made with baguette-style bread.

We had a much better path to follow now, much of it road and the rest suitable for automobiles, though there was very little traffic. We snaked our way to the top of another rise and there before us gleamed Burgos. The view gave us a glimpse of what the meseta would be like: a mirage! For as close as Burgos appeared to be, it receded into the distance as fast as we approached. The meseta is high, flat land and you can see for miles with a good vantage point.

Finally, we reached the outskirts of Burgos. Two hours later, we reached St Mary’s Cathedral. That’s a lot of outskirt! I walked for a while with a fellow from Madrid who kept muttering “Dios Mio!” wondering where it would end. I had to chuckle, although I was muttering the same under my breath.

Sometimes I feel that I am a very lucky traveler and my hotel selection in Burgos proved to be one of those instances. It is just around the corner from the major bus station and since I plan to take a bus back to Logroño the location could not be better. It is also 10 minutes from the Cathedral and 10 minutes from the Museum of Human Evolution.

Did I not mention that I was going back to Logroño? No, I did not leave anything there and I am not walking from Logroño to Burgos again. This is a planned excursion to attend a part of the grape harvest festival and to watch a bullfight. Tomorrow will be a rest day and the day after I take the two hour bus ride to Logroño. I will spend the night there, possibly drinking a copa or two of vino tinto, then return to Burgos and catch up with the Camino.

This is a cross at the top of the hill just before breakfast. If they took all the rocks off the trail leading to this point, it would bury the cross!
Me and my buddy Santiago, with St Mary’s cathedral behind. I took many pictures outside and inside the cathedral. None seem to do it justice. It is an amazing Gothic exterior and inside the art and carvings and tapestries and silverware and intricate altars are overwhelming. Construction began in 1221. Then, in the 15th and 16th centuries, the investment in the cathedral took off, reflecting the power of Spain and its growing empire.

Lisa and I met up at the Cathedral and after a tour inside, we had a some wine and pintxos. Lisa really likes the morcilla, the local sausage, and we had several versions of it. Then we returned to St Mary’s for mass and the pilgrim’s blessing. And now, back at the fortuitously located hotel, time to listen again to the Last Post and turn the lights out. RIP, Lillibet!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: