Day TWO 2 May 2015
Orisson to Roncevalles started at 6.20am arrived in Roncevalles @1.30pm ~17.8 kilometres
We enjoyed a wonderful dinner last night, three courses with plenty of free wine, so when I woke up at 5.30am I was not hungry at all. Hence I just packed my bag and got out at 6.30am and started on my way straight away. I could have had a free breakfast, but was still overly full. Also I am averaging only two kilometres an hour, so I need a head start, as it was unable to book the Monestary dorms, I needed to be there ahead of the big crowds!
It was a glorious morning, the sunrise was blood red, and stunning. I love to start off on my own and be just one with my surroundings. The valley was shrouded in heavy mist. It brought thoughts of Morain and King Richard and knights of the round table! Camelot, is what I mean, a castle rising out of the mist! Mysterious, stunning and magicical.
After about an hour I met Richard on a road, a young man from Germany, who had started out very early from Saint Jean. The two of us walked in easy camaraderie, in the early morning light. We enjoyed our chats and our silences as well. We reached the statue of the Virgin before we saw the first other pilgrims. The winds picked up and it became hard slog trying to stay upright! I was blown over twice and it is easy to see how one can be blown off the mountains. It was not an easy walk this morning, but I just couldn’t keep the smile of my face! Songs just kept bubbling up inside of me. Thank you, oh god, thank you! What a stunning experience, how fortunate that I have the time, energy and good health to being able to do this. I am also glad I am walking it at my own pace, made a tad more than two kilometres per hour today! Walked through stunningly beautiful forest, with new bright green shoots sprouting into being. Fascinating how all the colours have become more intense, how every thing is being experienced at a much more intense level. I am ALIVE in capital letters. Exile rated is what I feel strongly, trying to stay in the Here and Now, which is easier to do when walking on ones own. I don’t want to go beyond this moment in time. Staying at the monastery, which is run by the Dutch! If I had known that I would have walked another six kilometres! Only joking! Couldn’t hire a blanket so ended up buying a very light weight sleeping bag. An orange one. Expensive, 58 Euros, but this way I will be warm rather than have my muscles frozen in the morning. I have to keep my muscles warm, and supple. I had a very hot shower when I arrived here, had something light to eat and slept most of the afternoon. I will hopefully have another good night, and decide how I feel tomorrow morning where and how far I will walk! I am on my Way!