There are times on the Camino, just like in life, when you are taking a lot of steps but haven’t moved very much. We were trying to avoid the mountain but ended up going around in a large circle. We tried to find anyone to ask about getting to Laredo. It seemed that the only option at that moment was to once again jump on a bus.
We settled in to our rooms. After showers and clothes washing Lisa and I decided to get a cab into Laredo. We found a Vegan Friendly Restaurant and had a meal. We then walked to a grocery store. We went to the Taxi Cab area not far from the bus station and waited for a cab. After quite a while I decided to call the phone number on the phone box that said Taxi. The phone started ringing!!! Obviously no one is going to receive this call! After some time I started waving at a police car going by. We told them we couldn’t find a taxi. They told us don’t move, stay there. Oh good! They will find us a taxi! A few minutes later we saw a taxi drive by, and then another. We went back to the restaurant where we ate. They told us to go wait in the taxi zone. After asking a gas station attendant and a Hotel Manager I decided to call our Hostal. It took awhile but eventually a taxi came. Some parts of this day were a combination of a Star Trek Episode and the Twilight Zone.
Today was a long walk with few resources.. As we walked closer and closer to Castro Urdiales it seemed that we were not making much progress. We finally came to a small village. Nancy and Vern were considering a travel option when we saw a man in his front yard. At that moment his wife came home. They spoke together about any options we may have. They had looked at the bus schedule on their phones. When we asked them when the bus would arrive. They said NOW, BY THE CHURCH! The church was uphill and seemed like a half of a city block. We got there just in time. Vern was paying for the four of us. I was still struggling to find my mask so I could get on the bus! A short time later we were at Castro Urdiales, a bigger city than I expected.
CORRECTION: on the Bilbao To Santurce, Day 9 posting I had a photo of a large stuffed animal perched in a tree and called it an Ewok. It is not an Ewok but a Gremlin from the Gremlins Movie. Thank you Angel! She knows I need help editing and appreciate another set of eyes on the blog content.
Vern and I walked together along the River for many miles, (the variant route). Lisa and Rhonda chose the mountain walk, (The Camino Route.)
Anyone familiar with the Star Wars movies will recognize an Ewok. We did not expect to see a large stuffed animal replica of one in a tree! We had been walking along a busy road for a long time and was happy to see the animal!
The Bizkaia Bridge was the first ferry bridge built in the world with a metal structure. It is located at the mouth of the Ibaizabal river, at the point where the navigable estuary of Bilbao used to get to the sea until the 19th century. It was inaugurated on 28 July,1893 and its design was the work of Alberto Palacio and Elissague.
Above the hanging ferry is a pedestrian bridge.
We must have looked like we needed help buying our ferry ticket. We wanted to walk on top of the bridge but the tickets were sold out for 3 hours. We then tried to figure out how to buy a ferry ticket and he ⬆️ helped us….I forgot to ask your name.
We met up with Lisa and Rhonda in Santurce a few hours later to share the events of the day and have dinner. Buen Camino!
Garai may have been a distance from the Camino but it was a good place for us. We had a relaxing time there.
During our trip back to the Camino I sat next to a gentleman who wanted to speak English with me. his name is Pedro Gorogarri. Pedro played Jai Alai for many years and traveled the world, including locations in the United States and Mexico.
Thanks to Vern we are in an excellent area of Bilbao. We opened the front door and walked a few feet to a Vegan Friendly Bar and Restaurant……a few more feet and we had dinner in an all Vegan Restaurant. WAIT FOR IT:
A few days ago we made a reservation for rooms we thought were on the Camino del Norte. When we started looking at the exact mileage from Etxebarria we realized we would be 30k from the Camino and far into the mountains. At that point our choice was to cancel and lose the cost of the room or take transportation and enjoy a day off in the mountains. We made the right choice for us.
Today felt like the day we officially became Pilgrims. We walked the most distance so far and tried to stay to limited times for break. The sun was shining and it was important to move through the more open spaces into shade. It was a beautiful walking day with many views of the ocean. We are in our way! Buen Camino.
It was a beautiful day for walking. We chose a short distance for today, actually it was shorter than planned. We are just getting to know how to read the various apps and tools we are using.
Vern and I decided to use the Correos (Post Office) Backpack shipping service. We lightened our load, helping us to feel better and walk better due to injuries which we had before we entered Spain.
When we arrived at our Hotel in Zauratz our bags were not there. After a call to the Correos I realized that they did their best to reach me but my phone ringer was off. They no longer had drivers to deliver our bags. Vern and I were prepared to take a round trip taxi to Orio to get our bags. When I contacted the owner at Hostal Xaloa in Orio she insisted she would bring the bags to us!!!! Another example of Camino kindness!
Note: All locations in this blog, at this time are in Spain.
All distances are approximate.
We left Las Doce Tribus after breakfast. Antoni from Poland joined us. We had a great time walking along the coastline. After awhile some of us struggled with discomfort. We stopped at a Bar after approximately 9.5 miles of walking and called for a taxi for travel of the last 3.1 miles. we are actively discussing options for relieving some of the extra weight of the backpack, etc.
On March, 19, 1882 construction of the Sagrada Familia began under Architect, Francisco de Paula Del Villar. In 1843 when Villar resigned, Gaudí took over as Chief Architect, combining Gothic & Curvilinear Art Nouveau forms. Gaudí devoted the remainder of his life to the project and is buried in the crypt. At the time of his death in 1926, less than a quarter of the project was complete.