I’m still a beast of burden. I was at the post office at 8.30am, its nominated opening time only to find it still not open by 9.00am. I returned to my pension, got ready to leave and called back at the post office where I waited until 10.00am. I then asked a local who told me it was closed for the day. I have since found out that yesterday was a feast day for some Basque saint and today was the holiday in lieu because the feast day fell on a Sunday. I see these events as creating the circumstances for me to have been on the road when and where I was so that I could experience the things I have today.

Because I was late leaving Gernika I decided to stop at Lezama, the 20km mark.
What I discovered here was a brand new albergue built by the local council. It has just 18 beds and the hospitalero does your washing for you. It doesn’t get any better than that. There are only seven pilgrims here tonight.

Today’s walk consisted of a couple of climbs and descents through forested areas. In fact, we have been walking through similar countryside since leaving Irun. As I walked up the first mountain it occurred to me that of the hundreds of thousands of people who have walked the Camino’s I have walked none of them would have trod in the exactnsame footsteps as me. The point is simple: while we are all on a life path
it is a different path for everyone. This makes each of us unique.

I had lunch by the Hermitage San Esteban of Gerekiz. It was a small stone building. Locked. Only the exterior was to be enjoyed by pilgrims. It wasn’t a hard walk today, but I was glad to reach the albergue. I’m now expecting to be able to post my excess gear from Bilbao tomorrow, a distance of about 10km. Then I’ll be a beast of burden no more. I may even stay in Bilbao tomorrow night. I have to make a decision about new boots. Do I take the chance and have my current pair give up on me when I’m not in a position to replace them, or do I get new ones now. Bilbao
might be the place to do the changeover.

One of the pilgrims was offering Reiki with foot massage. I did not need any encouragement to take up the offer. Even though payment was discretionary my view is that there needs to be an exchange. It keeps things in balance.

For those of you who know my son Vincent, he’s off to Brussels in a day or so after five weeks in Paris. He doesn’t want to leave that great city, but needs to explore other places. Why Brussels? He didn’t say, but he will be with his American friend
Jack whom he met in Paris.

It’s ten pm and the light outside is just beginning to fade. I’m off to bed.

Ranks 2 overall on someone to write a paper for me the billboard hot 100′s decade-end chart