[Drinking from the wine fountain in Irache]
Route: Estella to Los Arcos
Every morning should begin with half of a coffee and a communion-amount of wine. It doesn’t quite infuse you with the energy you need to walk 22 km, but it is just a nice way to start the day. We didn’t feel great today – we could do the walk, but we’re still waiting for that feeling of lightness and joy. It has yet to be forthcoming.
There were very few towns today – as many as 12+ km separated us from the last town and the town we are currently in – Los Arcos. At some point we enjoyed a lengthy conversation with a guy from Santa Cruz who was hiking with his brother and girlfriend and girlfriend’s father. Despite being almost a decade younger than E and I, he has been with his girlfriend for just as long. We spoke about long-term relationships, the joy of travel and the dangers of barreling down hills and blowing through stop signs on skateboards and bikes. I learned a new term: skateboarding mongo. This means that you stand on the back of the board and propel yourself with your front foot. It’s strange to describe, but after he demonstrated, I felt that if I skateboarded, I would skate mongo. E and I agreed that it was nice to talk to someone else, to feel a different energy. I said, specifically, that it was great to talk to another native Californian. In my opinion, it’s one thing to talk top a Californian, another to talk to a native. We share something a little more than just any Californian. There’s an understanding, an openness and familiarity that you just don’t find anywhere else. Something you don’t have to explain to comprehend. It felt a little like being home.