I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass – anonymous street graffiti.
Yesterday as I considered licking from my plate the last remnants of Spanish omelette, I saw (through the bar window) walking up the street Leonardo and Simona; two Italian pilgrims whom I spent a few hours with when I slept at Saint Jean Pied de Port. I had resigned myself to spending the next couple of hours contemplating whether to continue on the Camino Frances or head instead upwards onto the Camino del Norte. Having walked the Frances before I was wondering whether the Norte would be more of an adventure and a better decision for this walk. I instinctively knew though that I had already made a firm commitment to walk the Camino frances and that besides, the Camino is about the people and not the way. Leonardo, Simona and I had hit it off immediately and I think this is in part due to my general love of Italians and Italian culture.
After some typical Italian demonstrations of affection at our seeing each other again, I tagged along to an albergue with Leonardo, Simona, and Gloria; a lovely Spanish girl from Madrid.
The name and address of the albergue/hostel:
“Jesus Y Maria”
It is basically a few steps from the cathedral and is a recommended place to sleep in the historical part of the town. The price is 8 Euro and part of your payment will go towards the Foundation Aspace Navarra, an organisation which helps place people with disabilities into the workplace.
The albergue main entrance:
Checking in to the albergue:
Payment receipt and bed number provided:
The beds are dorm-style and are housed on two levels, open planed:
The albergue has wifi internet, a well-equipped kitchen, wash room with washing machine and dryers, and (some) coin lockers where to place your valuables. It is very clean and the atmosphere is friendly – it used to be a church after all. As with any place where you stay though, ear plugs should be an essential item in your rucksack 🙂
After checking in and taking showers, all 4 of us headed out onto the streets of Pamplona to drink a little Crianza (red) wine and eat some pinchos. Pinchos are the Basque equivalent of Tapas and it is essentially the same system except that with pinchos you order a wine and also pay for your Pincho (food). with Tapas you order your wine but the food is complimentary. A glass of wine is typically E1,50 and a pincho averaged between 1 and 2 Euro.
The pinchos were good, especially the squid ink, in a breaded (fried) coating.
All the photos taken of our afternoon fiesta yesterday in Pamplona:
Spinach and cheese:
Today I walk on to Puente La Reina. It is still cold and wet, but this will change the further west the way trails and the further I’m traveled from the mountains.