Thursday, September 6, 2012

Solo walk in darkness to Logrono (Sep 6 Thurs)

K´s sore shin had meant that she could not risk aggravating the problem before seeking medical attention. She decided to take a taxi ride to the next town of Logrono, which happened to be a sizeable one.

In the morning I started off early so as to be in Logrono to help K with my lack of Spanish, (in whatever ways, that is).  The bakery next to our Casa was open by 6am, so we called in and bought some croissants and fruit juice, and I was off soon by 6.30am while it was still dark. I had only taken a few steps when I realised I did not know where I was to proceed, so started looking for the Camino sign. It was difficult in the deep street lights, but fortunately, an early lady walker appeared and I decided to follow for she seemed to know where she was going, rather than spend precious time looking for my torch in my backpack. A few steps out of town and it was pitch darkness. How thoughtless I was not to be prepared for this.

The lady I was following was a swift walker so before long she was several hundred metres ahead. Fortunately for me, not only was she well prepared with a torch, but also considerate enough to keep flashing it and even in my direction so that I always knew where to proceed. The bright half moon helped but I was never in great danger of being lost because the lights of Logrono some 9km away was always visible from Viana in the dark. I guessed in the worst scenario, I could make my way to the main road several hundred metres away and follow it.

Before long the sun had arisen, a beautiful deep red glow in the dusty country air. There were times when I thought I had stepped away from the route, but a few walkers overtook me and I knew I was right. I caught up with a Japanese lady who walked steadily but I was able to learn that she had recently retired. I moved on but ran into her again later in Logrono. In about an hour I had reached the boundary between Navarra and La Rioja, and soon after I reached the bridge that leads to Logrono city. Surprise, surprise, I was outside the general hospital, where I was to meet K, in less than 2 hours and K had not even found her taxi back at Viana. Another problem with the Spanish distances, perhaps.

After K arrived, we spent more than an hour sorting out the medical issues, then went down to the town centre for a look around and some food. It is good to be in a proper town for a change, where most shops stay open and we could watch those residents who unfortunately have to go to work !

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