Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Day 18... and I'm in Castrojeriz.  Left the albergue at 5:30 am
in beautiful moonlight along with about six other pilgrims including 2 south Korean sisters who look to be in their 50s or 60s.  Once when I got a rock inside my shoe they helped me balance so I could get it out.  No rocks or places to sit!  reached the first village in about three hours and stopped for  breakfast.   Finished today's  12.5 miles by 11:30 am.  Good to stop as getting hot. I wore my backpack today...  nearly empty but.allowed me to carry water on my hips which took pressure off of my back.  The things I normally carry in it went in a rucksack and Jacotrans took it with the little bag that automatically goes daily.  Chatted with several new friends that I've met in the evenings along the route today.  Just heard from Jenn and she is safely in Rabanal.  She saw the Gaudi house today in Astorga on her way through the town. She's walking double the miles or more than I am each day.
Buen Camino

Monday, July 30, 2018


Day 17, I'm in Hornillos del Camino.  Small village at the beginning of the.Meseta.  claim to fame, Martin Scheen has a grandson who owns a Casa Rural in the  village.   I'm in a  beautiful albergue called El Alfar. Eating in house tonight...main coarse is paella.  Have showered, washed hair and clothes and said goodbye to my old and new friends as they continued down the trail. I was very happy leaving Burgos at 6 am and arriving here before 1 PM. 13 miles
Stopped for a good breakfast half way here and enjoyed the company of 3 Italians at my table.  Walked some with a south Korean lady who is completely covered including her face.  But she walks about my speed and we had some good conversations on the trail.  I was beginning to hurt when a Spanish family (2 brothers and their mother) started walking with me.  They  stayed with me for over an hour until we were within sight of my stopping village.  They took the photo ofme before they left... its of my back...
I look like a flying ghost with my jacket; but it keeps the hot sun off of the backs of my arms . 
I met a man who is carrying a French horn and.plays a short tune every ten minutes or so.  Another man is riding an electric unicycle. Always something new every day.  Jenn had a long walking day but is also settled in for the night several days ahead of me. Enjoyed mass in the cathedral in Burgos last night.
Buen Camino.

Sunday, July 29, 2018


DAY 16 and I'm in Burgos.  15 miles in 8 hours.  Left at 6 am with a full moon and a fantastic sunrise.  My planned walking partner didn't come at 5:30 to tape her toes so at 6 I left.  Sad as it would have been a good day...but I needed to get moving as I'd been awake since 4 am. 
Long hill at first then a long.downhill.  we could see Burgos in the distance. I found another flower gift that Jenn left for me on the trail several days ago.  So much fun.  After walking.around the airport I chose the green route along the river.  beautiful but very long. A bicycle rider spent 5 minutes explaning the direction ..
all in Spanish.  Many people stopped me in the.park to encourage my progress.  Going to mass in the cathedral tonight.  Also..
In an all girl dorm tonight. Should be less snoring.
Jenn is done with the bike and will begin.walking 20 mile days.  Oh to.be young again.  Buen Camino

Saturday, July 28, 2018

DAY 15 postscript..

This afternoon I found the wood craftsman who mades working models  of everything.  Gave me the whole tour in Spanish and lots of sign language.  Wonderful old man...sharing the history of his village.
Then back to the church to see the.baptismal font and window that I'd missed...plus the.storks nest on top of the bell tower.  I've also made a new friend and we're walking to Burgos together tomorrow morning.  Salad and paella for dinner. Yummy
Did I mention, Jenn had a fantastic day on her bicycle!


Day 15 and I'm in Ages, a very old village full of half timbered buildings and a very old church.  Allan from England is here and also Tova who I met through Reka from Budapest.  Very hot now but I walked the whole ten miles this morning without sun.  There was only one stop in San Juan and I took my shoes off and enjoyed an Americno coffee .. 3 euros... and met more friends.  Mother and daughter from Denmark but they return home from Burgos which is tomorrow.  Allan from England also goes home tomorrow.   Last night was okay, lights out at 10 and only giggles and whispering after 11 PM.  They took them away for activities in the afternoon which helped.  Woke at 5 and was on the road by 5:30 am in the dark.  But trail was well marked and people passed regularly.  Got one scare when dogs began to bark in the dark,  then I saw the owner's light in his tent telling them to stop barking.  Then I saw the two donkeys grazing nearby.  Passed several unusual things today but best was a love note from my daughter posted on the albergue bulletin board when I arrived.  She was here two nights ago.  She will be in Shangun tonight...half way to Santiago.  She's on a bicycle and is doing three day every day.  Tomorrow will be her last and then she'll be walking again.   She had a really tough day yesterday but today should be flat and easier.  My day isn't over until I hear from her.  Jim returned from visiting a friend in Mammoth yesterday and today is saying goodbye to a dear friend.  Buen Camino Foster, you will be missed by many. Condolences to Lorie and the family, I will remember him in my prayers today.

Friday, July 27, 2018


Day 14 and I've arrived in villafranca de monte de oca.  Had looked forward to this quiet oasis but they have filled half of the beds with teenagers.  Going to be a long day and night.  Last night was special.  I ate early as the communal dinner was not until after 8 PM. Three young men, Swedish, netherland and German...  who all spoke English sat with me while I ate.  Delightful conversation.  The group was so large that they moved the dinner outside.  I have a wonderful photo from my window.  Just after I took the photo they saw me and soon all were waving.  I joined them for the special sharing after 10 PM in the dark cburch... candlelight only... as everyone shared their reason for being on the Camino in their own language.  I was the only one to speak in English.  Then off to our floor mats for a well earned sleep. 
This morning, I walked 3 miles, then took a taxi for 10 miles and then walked the last eight miles...all a gradual uphill.  Lost the route when passing through a village for a couple of miles but stuck to the road as I knew it crossed over at some point.  Just as I reached the top and saw my destination...up walk Reka, my friend from Budapest that I keep meeting along the way.  Good day even though it was very hot walking even though I arrived by noon.  Jenn is riding her bike for the first time in many years and I'm anxiously awaiting news of her arrival in Fromista. Buen Camino

Thursday, July 26, 2018


Day 13 and I've arrived in Grannon.  Staying in the attic of a church tonight... sleeping on a mat.  Sun came out early and it got very hot early.  8+ miles in a little over 4 hours.  No wifi tonight except at bar.  I found my pilgrim friend from Budapest in Santo Domingo and when leaving Santo Domingo I found a rose that Jenn left for me on Tuesday morning.  Lovely day but mostly walked alone.  As I arrived in Grannon I found a field of sunflowers.  Jenn will arrive in Burgos today and begin her bike ride tomorrow. I won't be in Burgos for 3 more days.  Tomorrow is a very long stretch and plan to ride a bus for part of it.  Also only carried a day pack today..much better.  Buen Camino

Wednesday, July 25, 2018


Day 12 and I'm in a lovely albergue in Ciruena...just east of Santo Domingo.  Jenn is miles ahead of me and will be in Burgos tomorrow.  It was an overcast day and I always had people in front and behind me all morning that I could see which was really nice.  I did a bit over 10 miles in 5 hours. Up a gradual but very long hill.  Meeting many new people each day which is fun.  Today they all speak English which is nice.  There are days when no one speaks English. Also noticed a new crop today...kale I think. Hardly any vineyards but more wheat. 
Buen camino...

Tuesday, July 24, 2018


Day 11 .. I'm in Najera. Arrived just after 11 an but could not get into albergue until 1 PM.  I had company in the park across the street.  If you have to wait not a bad spot along a river.Jenn has also stopped for the day and we've been in touch.
Started walking at 6 am. Used earplugs last night and really slept well.  It was a lonely walk this morning.  Had a dozen or so pass during the day, including Joachim from Amsterdam.. dinner in Lograno.  Then in Najera I've seen French girl from Viana and Jesus that we met early on .. he had a leg injury and has had to slow down.  Today was 10.4 miles and took me five hours.  Expecting a thunder storm this afternoon so will get dinner early.  Buen Camino

Monday, July 23, 2018

DAY 10. Navarrete

Day 10 and I'm in Navarrete where Jenn was last night.  She left me a love note in the register log book .  She's doing 20 miles today and I'll be happy when I hear she's arrived.  Being a mother never stops no matter how old they are.  My day started at 6 am and I finished my walk at 10:30.  Glad it was short as it's a hot day.  Also got a tiny blister on my left little toe. 
Enjoyed dinner in the albergue last night with a German man who has bicycled from his home in Germany and will end in Lisbon, Portugal.  And we were joined by a young man from Amsterdam who is only walking portions every year.
Today I walked around a large lake on my route and also saw workers in the vineyards.  It was mostly gradually uphill and an easy walk of 8.5 miles.  Buen Camino

Sunday, July 22, 2018


It's day 9 and I'm sitting in the albergue  Santiago Apostol in Logrono. Jenn went off this morning an hour before me and she is where I'm going to be tomorrow. I will post you the elevation map to show you what I'm going to be doing in the next 2 days from after Lagrono.   It was an easy walk and I carried my backpack ... I left  7:00 a.m. in daylight walked 6 miles to the edge of Logrono to my albergue arriving within 3 hours.  Tomorrow is a bit longer but have decided to carry the backpack but did switch around some heavier things for lighter ones in the minnie suitcase I'm having transported each day.  I found a nearby church and made the 10:15 mass before checking in.  Nice albergue..
But I do have a snorer next to me...he took a nap when he arrived!  There is a group of 20 down syndrome teenagers staying here for a week... they are from Bilboa
.. nice to watch the staff and teachers work with them.  Not easy but wonderful.  Went walking in the city..  ice cream seems to be the big draw .. but am eating my bread left from yesterday with a glass of wine!  I picked up a fresh loaf for tomorrow for 55 euros. Food is relatively cheap.  I had trouble finding electrical outlets near the beds.  That, along with wifi is very important to pilgrims like me.  They are high on the wall with a box to lay your phone in while charging.  Always something new.
I checked out webcam and saw Jim watching TV.... probably Sunday Morning.. but since it was time for him to get ready for church... I did not bark the dogs.  My favorite way to get his attention when his cell phone volume is down.  We'll be talking later... we're learning to use what'sApp for phone calls over the internet.  Jenn and I are also using it to communicate.
I've signed up for the pilgrims dinner her in the albergue tonight.  Should be fun.  Already met a French girl that stayed with us last night.  And...Reka from Budapest just arrived!! 
Take care my friends...
Buen Camino

Saturday, July 21, 2018


Day Eight and we've arrived in Viana, a medieval town just east of Lograno. Today is the beginning of a five day    festival for the feast day of St James (Santiago) on Wednesday.  Everyone dressed in white clothes with red scarfs. Fireworks, dancing and lots of dancing and drinking.  Tomorrow at 2 PM they will run the bulls down the.main street to the bullring and have a bullfight with a matoridor.  But we will be long gone by then.  Weather was perfect for walking our 7 miles today.  Last night we had dinner with a couple from Scotland, Louise from Ireland and a gentleman from South Keora.  Today our albergue is full of people from France. 
Tomorrow I begin walking solo .. slower .. and Jenn speeds up to get to Santiago almost a month before me.  I'll miss her but know that she'll really enjoy walking her normal pace.  I heard from the very first people that I met on my first Camino today and I'm sitting on my bunk surrounded by Jenn above me, a German boy across the way and a Frenchman to my right all taking afternoon naps.  I'm wrapped in my pea green sleep sack to keep the flys off of my legs. They don't use window screens in Europe much.  They fly in and out at will.  My sleep sack and backpack are both borrowed from the  friend that I met at the end of my first camimo... sweet Debbie from Maine mailed me all her gear so that Jenn could use mine.  I met Debbie because we had the same unusual backpacks in the airport on our way to Paris in 2015.  Thanks Debbie
Buen Camino my friends

Friday, July 20, 2018


Day 7 and we are at Albergue Samsol tonight
Just before Torres de Rio.  Shorter day, only 12.15 miles .  Left at 7 am and arrived at 1 pm.  Saw tractors harvesting hay.  Some is rolled, some are rolled and wrapped.  Others are large rectangular bales and stacked about three stories high in the fields until needed or they rot and eventually collapse.  Weather was 12 degrees cooler today and many clouds. Fairly level walking but still a long day.  Never found a toilet except in the fields behind tall plants
...men are fortunate .
One more day of walking together and then we split up.  Jenn will finish nearly a month before me.  Dinner last night was with an Englishman originally from New Zeland.  He is in 40's, walking his 7th Camino.  He is also a special ed teacher.  We shared paella and I mostly listened while Bryce and Jenn shared teaching stories.  Nice evening
  Buen Camino

Thursday, July 19, 2018


It's Thursday evening and we are in Albergue Villamayor....west of Estella.  We walked 17 miles today and did 6 on the bus.  Jenn did another 3 miles walking up to the castle ruins on top of the mountain after we arrived.  I have developed a large blister on the side of heal.  We're both having rashes on our legs.  Combination of many factors. Today we saw and visited many  churches. We are definitely in wine country.  Passed the free wine facuet when we were on the bus. Missed opportunity but our feet and backs appreciated the ride!  The sun was brilliant and very hot today...88 degrees. Many stops at bars today to rest, use the toilets and visit with friends while we enjoy coffee or orange juice.  Off to dinner.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018


Tonight we are in Puenta de Reina..
We walked over 16 miles today...but did arrive just before a furious rain storm with vicious wind.  Short lived but so glad we were safe inside.  Both very tired tonight but planning to do more miles tomorrow.  Today we climbed Mount Perdon and celebrated with our many new friends. Walked pass beautiful sunflower fields and saw our first vineyard.  Everybody in the room is already sleeping.  We enjoyed a beautiful old church with a rosary and mass followed by a special pilgrims blessing.  Tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018


Tues. JULY 17TH
long day ... we began at 7 am and walked 11 miles to Pamploma.  The hills were shorter, sometimes along the highway but mostly gravel paths.  We got lost in the outskirts of Pamplona, but after stopping at a pharmacy we were soon back on track and arrived at 2 pm.  We are in a religious albergue that can hold a couple of hundred pilgrims I think.  It's only 9 euro per bed and that includes a fresh sheet (linen...not paper) plus a pillow.  A real bargain on the camino.
Were making friends from around the world.  Jenn is out this evening with an  Irish girl and many of us are leaving tomorrow in the dark together.  Six of us went to the 7 PM mass tonight in a  church build in the 12th. Century.  Earlier this afternoon Jenn and I toured the Cathedral that is less than a block away. Dinner was homemade sheeps cheese and dried ham freshly sliced on yesterdays french bread.  We'd finished our choc bars during our walk today.
  Heading to bed soon.  Weather was very warm today, lots of sunburned pilgrims.   Buen Camino

Monday, July 16, 2018


Hard to believe we are on our 3rd night already.  Left the albergue early this morning at 5:30 am... had headlamps and flashers for security.  Had planned a 17 mile walk.  The light rain started with in 10 minutes and continued on and off all day.  Fortunately we had wonderful rain ponchos that completely covered us...we were dry and warm.  But by the end of four miles..my back was giving me problems from the pack which is much too heavy!   After stopping for some breakfast, we caught the bus for the next eight  miles.  Got off and finished the last five miles with no problems.  The next few days are all going to be long miles so I'm  gonna lighten my pack plus a few pounds from Jenns so we can get conditioned for the rest of the trip.
Staying at a lovely albergue.that spoils you for what most of them offer.  And we're having a community dinner.  We already have met several of them the first two nights. And a  good portion of the pilgrims speak English. 
Hope you're enjoying our journey as much as we are.

Sunday, July 15, 2018


Yesterday finally posted tonight in Roncevalles ..  which has wifi.
We had a loud and wet storm last night, but beautiful sunshine today for our 10 mile hike into
Roncevalles.  Lots of climbing and some very steep downhills.  But I didn't fall this time! 
There is a statue of Our Lady high atop on of the mountains today.  I place a rosary for my sister Betty who died two years ago, on her hand.
Exciting news when we arrived about France with winning the world cup. 
We are off to bed for starting before dawn tomorrow.


Its July 14th and its Bastille Day in France.  We are sitting on an outdoor patio on the edge of forever in the French pyrenees mountains.  There is a large group of French people celebrating the National Holiday.  Singing national songs and drinking together.

I flew to Madrid from Paris Friday afternoon and waited eight hours for my daughter Jennifer to arrive.   She left California Thursday evening.  Eight hour layover in Gatwick airport in London gave her time to catch the train into London to see the outside of Buckingham Palace and several other notable famous places before going back for her plane to Madrid.  OOPS..
The flight was delayed. Her flight was over an hour late
Arrived at 22 minutes after midnight.  Sidenote: its thundering overhead.  Our bus to Pamploma that we'd reserved months ago was due at 1:15 am.  No refund.  She ended up getting a taxi to take her from terminal one to four where the bus was.  We made the bus with 5 minutes to spare.  Very exciting.  Bus arrived in Pamploma at 7 am.  Sleeping bodies all over dressed in white with red scarfs... sleeping on concrete floors,
No blankets, most wrapped in their girl friends arms after celebrating  the last days of "running of the bulls".... they say there were a million people there celebrating.  We walked for half an hour and hired a taxi for over an hours ride through the mountains  to France and the village of St Jaun PDP.   The beginning of the Camino Frances.  We walked for 4 hours up the mountains to Orisson, our first albergue on our journey.  We enjoyed a community dinner with 30 plus people from all over the world: south Korea, ItaLy, Austrilia, Canada,  America and French.  Tomorrow we continue to walk and will be in Spain  before our day is done.  Buen Camino

Friday, July 13, 2018


It's just after 9 am on July 13th...I'm at terminal 3 at CDG airport north of Paris waiting for my 1:30 flight to Madrid.  Jenn left LAX Last night and is on her way via Gatwick in London.  Yesterday with Mary in Paris was great.  We walked to the corner boulinge for coffee and croissants before exploring the neighborhood more and visiting the neighborhood church to light a candle and say a rosary for the lost suitcase.  Mary found a Tabac shop that has the New York Times newspaper.  No TV in the apartment so this will keep her up on the news.  The streets are full of excitement for this weekend. Its Bastile Day and they MAY win the world cup in Soccer on Sunday!
Good news when we called the airport about the suitcase, its arrived in Paris and will be delivered later in the evening.  Down side is that Mary will stay home instead of joining me for a trip to Maison-Lafayette to visit my friends for dinner and also leave my suitcase for the after the Camino trip when I meet Jim back in Paris.   Went out via metro and train.  So enjoyed the evening with Maeliss and Nicolas and their 3 children. And did I mention. My Facebook stopped working yesterday and Nicolas helped me fix it! Long day.. to bed about midnight.  But,  Mary's suitcase arrived safely and Jenn and I , God willing , will both be in Madrid before midnight.  The La Defence building all lite with French colors tonight.   Buen Camino

Wednesday, July 11, 2018


My twin sister and I arrived in Paris France today together! We were scheduled to arrive on 2 different planes but her plane had problems and they switched her to my flight so we actually got to come to France together on a straight through flight on Air TahitiNut.  We were both on American airline Miles but had been scheduled on different flights. Mary's flight was scheduled to go to Chicago and then to CDG and I was going straight through from Los Angeles to CDG in Paris.   The big problem is Mary's Suitcase was alredy on the plane to Chicago and they didn't get it switch so she is  Still waiting for her suitcase to arrive. Her granddaughter who is scheduled to come from China has also been delayed because of the storms that they're having there. She is now scheduled to arrive on Saturday. We had a great day today ..
got out and did some walking on  familiar streets in the neighborhood and had a wonderful stroll up Rue Mouffetard reliving old memories.  Tomorrow we work on the missing suitcase .  It's great to be in Paris.

Monday, July 9, 2018


I'm trying to learn how to post on  my blog from my cell phone. If this works out I'll be posting from the Camino starting sometime later this week. Bear with me it's a new learning process.  New phone....new rules!  I'm thrilled that I found so much out today as yesterday I wrote that I would not be posting!  Buen camino...

Sunday, July 8, 2018


Hello Friends and Family....

I'm off to Europe for a few months, mainly to walk the Camino Frances with my daughter in July and August. Then in September a few weeks with Jim in Paris and Scotland followed by October in England. 

I'm not taking a computer so will be doing everything on my cell phone.  Sorry....my blog will be entered after I return home.  Either I'm too old or it's just gotten too complicated to do on the small screen!   If I magically find a computer genius on the trail who will teach me how to do it; I'll start but that's no likely!    BUT, I will be posting daily on Facebook whenever possible with photos.

Buen Camino