5th Day: Puente la Reina to Estella

I jumped down from the outer Refugio wall into a patch of wet weeds. The sandals I was wearing did little to protect my feet. Since it was dark, I had a hard time seeing where I was going. I heard the sound of water and looked down to see that the earth fell away into a creek that I would need to jump over. Leah and Caetano were still on the other side of the Refugio wall waiting for me to work my way to the front door to unlock it. Luckily the back door was open and I slinked into the dark hallway of the Refugio. The front door clicked open easily. Even though the sign on the front of the Municipal Refugio noted an 11 pm lights out time, the doors were locked by 9:30 with the other 24 pilgrims asleep inside.

I woke up the next morning quite satisfied with myself, until Caetano asked me if I had a hangover from the wine at dinner last night. I didn’t. I set off a half hour after Leah and Caetano with the English group again. On the way out of town we passed first the Church of the Crucifix, so named for the Y shaped crucifix brought by German Pilgrims in the 14th century, and on to a path that intersected green and yellow fields on each side of us. The pace of the Camino is different for everyone and I found myself first falling behind the English group to take pictures and then leap frogging them when they took a break. We made it through the medieval town of Maneru and approached the village of Cirauqui. The path up to the the village and the Church of Santa Catalina is flush with vineyards and almond orchards. Eventually, the leap frog ended and I never caught up to them until the Refugio in Estella.

I continued walking by myself for a few kilometers. Somewhere after the oldest bridge in Europe outside of Cirauqui, but before the next town of Lorca, I saw Kild with his eyes closed and shoes off resting by the river. Kild is a 65 year old Danish-man who I met on the first day in St. Jean pied de Port. He told me then that this Camino will be his third. He is a pilgrim, but his end destination is not Santiago, but 82 kilometers further in Finesterre, the western most city in Spain. “The Camino is for pilgrims of history. Finnestere is the modern pilgrimage. Before it was all about religion, now it’s different. Go to Finnestere, it’s the modern Camino.” he told me. You wouldn’t say Kild is without some spiritual element to him. I saw him embrace a tree because it was 100 years old and had stories to tell. He also believes in reincarnation. I guess that’s what his pastor meant when he said Kild is the right type of Christian wrong. He does the pilgrimage, but in his own way and not for religious reasons. According to that definition, I have met a lot of right type of Christians wrong on this trip.

Iglesia del Crucifijo (Church of the Crucifix)


Outside of Puente la Reina


Outside of Maneru


On the way to Cirauqui


Obligitory dog picture (in Cirauqui)


Monument to a Canadian Pillgrim In 2002 a Canadian pilgrim was killed crossing the road outside of Villatuerta. The rocks are a memorial and the stone underpass behind it is so that it never happens again


Iglesia Parroquial del Santo Sepulcro


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