July 17, 2008

Day 54: 6 June- Viana to Navarrete

I wasn't entirely looking forward to the walk past industrial sites into Logrono, but in the event it wasn't so bad. There was a lovely path past much of it, with these markers along the way. And there was even a small lake to pass near, where people went bird-watching.
There was a quite a descent into Logrono, then the Camino route took us into the city via the historic part of it. I had been in such a rural walking environment for many weeks, that I had taken an aversion to large cities. Logrono looked like it might be an interesting place to explore: I will perhaps return in another life as a tourist ;-)At one point in the city I became a bit confused about where to go next, and a friendly local soon pointed out the way. Before long it seemed I was 'out the other side' and walking in a park area where many locals were also walking. Denis caught up to me here, and walked at my pace all the way to Navarrete. I enjoyed his company and the chance to talk in more depth.
Here is Navarrete appearing ahead on a hillside,
and some ruins we passed showed that it has long been on the pilgrim trail.
We really enjoyed staying in this albergue for all sorts of reasons. It had smaller rooms, a very communal kitchen/dining area, a friendly hospitalero, and reminded us of the French gites we had stayed in.
The only downside was.... there was a lot of construction going on outside... and it would seem that the only people in Spain who do not get a siesta... are those who wield a drill.... so when I settled for a wee afternoon nap... guess what?!
The evening in Navarrete brought an unexpected treat. There was a choir performance in the church from Coro Sinfonico de La Rioja. They sang at first during the Mass, then also afterwards, and they sounded just heavenly. I wrote on my blog at the time about their performance, (and some of the choir members have since found the post and written some friendly comments that I really appreciated. Ahhh if only I had been brave enough to speak to them at the time!)

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