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LIVE from the Camino Waiting for pilgrims in Canfranc

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
We are on the train headed for our hospitalero duties at Canfranc Pueblo. We walked as pilgrims the first part of this trip on the Camino Aragones and a few days on the Camino Frances also spent a week being tourists in Spain for the first time in 6 trips here.

Our train journey from Zaragoza was about 11 euros each with a Tarjeta Dorada discount. You must purchase the TD in person (6 euros) at a Renfe station and show proper documentation that you are 60 or older. We've made multiple train journeys this trip so the card has paid for itself. We have been asked to show the card on several occasions when the ticket were bought online.

The train to Canfrac Estacion runs twice daily and takes about 4 hours. Because it is a regional train it makes many stops, but it is comfortable and has a bathroom on board. Bring your own snacks and drinks as there is no dining car. We boarded at 8:43 and should arrive at Canfranc Estacion at 12:30 or so.

We have notified the current hospitalera that we'll arrive this afternoon. We stayed as pilgrims at the albergue a few weeks ago so already know how to get there and bit about it.
 
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LTfit

Veteran Member
We are on the train headed for our hospitalero duties at Canfranc Pueblo. We walked as pilgrims the first part of this trip on the Camino Aragones and a few days on the Camino Frances also spent a week being tourists in Spain for the first time in 6 trips here.

Our train journey from Zaragoza was about 11 euros each with a Tarjeta Dorada discount. You must purchase the TD in person (6 euros) at a Renfe station and show proper documentation that you are 60 or older. We've made multiple train journeys this trip so the card has paid for itself. We have been asked to show the card on several occasions when the ticket were bought online.

The train to Canfrac Estacion runs twice daily and takes about 4 hours. Because it is a regional train it makes many stops, but it is comfortable and has a bathroom on board. Bring your own snacks and drinks as there is no dining car. We boarded at 8:43 and should arrive at Canfranc Estacion at 12:30 or so.

We have notified the current hospitalera that we'll arrive this afternoon. We stayed as pilgrims at the albergue a few weeks ago so already know how to get there and bit about it.
Enjoy your hospitalero duties! Last night I stayed in the CSJ albergue in Miraz and it was nice to share our hospitalero experiences.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Ok, we're here. The current hospitalera will be in charge tonight and we take over in the morning. She says there really are not enough pilgrims staying at this beautiful albergue. There are two so far tonight from Britain and France.

A third lad came in, but he was not a pilgrim just a hiker so he was turned away as he had no credential. We saw a group of school kids come through on this very hot day. They got a drink and refilled water here at the square and had a photo made in front of the caboose. There is also a man dressed as a pilgrim leading a tour, but they have a bus pulled up to take them on their way.

We have had a hand off from the current hospitalero. Things look relatively similar to other albergue norms and duties. Inside it is cool and pleasant. The stone and masonry walls help with that.
 
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Bradypus

Migratory hermit
Time of past OR future Camino
Too many and too often!
She says there really are not enough pilgrims staying at this beautiful albergue.
I've always wondered why so few pilgrims walk from Somport/Canfranc compared with SJPDP. The slightly more difficult travel to the starting point doesn't seem enough to explain the vast difference in numbers. I have a copy of Elias Valiña's 1984 Camino guide and the Somport route is the first option he describes. SJPDP is the second choice.
 

SabineP

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
I've always wondered why so few pilgrims walk from Somport/Canfranc compared with SJPDP. The slightly more difficult travel to the starting point doesn't seem enough to explain the vast difference in numbers. I have a copy of Elias Valiña's 1984 Camino guide and the Somport route is the first option he describes. SJPDP is the second choice.


Exactly. All the Belgian pilgrims I knew who walked in the eighties and nineties and started in France ( or Belgium ) never went via Saint Jean but always via Somport.
When did the shift start I wonder?
 

Bradypus

Migratory hermit
Time of past OR future Camino
Too many and too often!
Exactly. All the Belgian pilgrims I knew who walked in the eighties and nineties and started in France ( or Belgium ) never went via Saint Jean but always via Somport.
When did the shift start I wonder?
In the eighties British pilgrims almost all started from SJPDP. The Confraternity of St James published a very basic English-language guide (40 pages of A5 typescript) which assumed SJPDP as the start point. More of a supplement to Valiña's guidebook than a standalone guide. A separate CSJ guide was available for Arles to Puente la Reina but that was very much a road less travelled. I wonder why Brits and Belgians preferred different routes?
 
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SabineP

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
In the eighties British pilgrims almost all started from SJPDP. The Confraternity of St James published a very basic English-language guide (40 pages of A5 typescript) which assumed SJPDP as the start point. More of a supplement to Valiña's guidebook than a standalone guide. A separate CSJ guide was available for Arles to Puente la Reina but that was very much a road less travelled. I wonder why Brits and Belgians preferred different routes?


If I remember correctly there were some Flemish historians writing specifically about the Aragones ( should try to retrace those old articles somewhere in an archive ) . Start of the Flemish Confraternity was in 1985. A mix of sporty ( mainly bike then ) and religious reasons.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Our Spanish hospitalera is on her way home. We had a wide ranging conversation last evening complete with showing photos of kids and grandkids. I was surprised how much I could say and understand. I told her we took Spanish lessons each week and she said she could understand me well. Phil understands a lot, but has more trouble getting the words out

I met several of the townfolk as she, Phil, and I watched the evening activities in and around the plaza and the two bars. Only the two pilgrims last night, but someone called today to ask about reservations for tomorrow. I told him we don't take reservations. But we are seldom full so we will likely see him tomorrow.

There is a festival in Canfranc Estacion this weekend and we're getting lots of tourist traffic at the bars and walking through town. The festival is for the revival of the station which is being remodeled into a hotel. Music, football games, Bingo, stuff for kids. Etc.

Church is today at 12:30 so we will attend. The albergue is clean now and I made a few salad dishes to tide us over until we go to the store on Monday or Tuesday.

More when we know who is joining us tonight! I counted and it looks like about 70 pilgrims total for the previous 15 days so I hope we can beat that!
 

Bradypus

Migratory hermit
Time of past OR future Camino
Too many and too often!
I counted and it looks like about 70 pilgrims total for the previous 15 days so I hope we can beat that!

I think that really spells out the vast difference in numbers walking the Somport and SJPDP routes. When I reached Roncesvalles in July 1990 I found myself one of 9 pilgrims staying there that night - the largest number I met in one place on my entire journey. And more than you are receiving daily in Canfranc even now 30+ years later when total pilgrim numbers on the Caminos have multiplied nearly x70. I find that astonishing.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
2 pm. Waiting for pilgrims in the albergue covered entryway. You can see the gorgeous view of the rockface behind the church which is our Vista while waiting. You might ask, why don't they wait inside where it is cooler? Well there is only a tiny sign. We'll suggest something bigger and more visible before we leave.
20220716_141343.jpg 20220716_141407.jpg 20220716_141859.jpg 20220716_141906.jpg
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Last night 7 pilgrims. One Italian, one French, 4 Spaniards and one from Argentina. The Spaniards and Argentinian were walking together. Looked like a fun Male bonding experience for 5 guys in their 50's and 60's!

After a stroll through town it is relatively clear that many of the dwellings are second homes or AirBNB type arrangements. Still lots of people about although I suspect it will be quieter on Monday.

Phil and I are hoping to make our first shopping trip for groceries for ourselves and the albergue tomorrow. We're lower on toilet paper than I am comfortable with and we need more fruit and whole milk. The non-fat or reduced fat milk doesn't appeal to this pilgrim crowd.

We got several calls yesterday from pilgrims and a few passersby. The rules at this albergue strictly state you must arrive unsupported by bus or car. It is also strictly for pilgrims. Otherwise I think we'd be overwhelmed with weekend hikers and people looking for a "cheap" place to stay.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 CF
I've always wondered why so few pilgrims walk from Somport/Canfranc compared with SJPDP. The slightly more difficult travel to the starting point doesn't seem enough to explain the vast difference in numbers. I have a copy of Elias Valiña's 1984 Camino guide and the Somport route is the first option he describes. SJPDP is the second choice.
My favourite Camino in Spain 😎 (so far). But it is short…
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
Glad you have found your way there safely! That albergue and the village are a treat, but the real treasure can be found in the lovely inhabitants of Canfranc (not just the people, but also all the cats, sheep, goats, dogs, and so on). It may be quiet, but you are there in the extremely busy season! Enjoy the “crowds”
 

Cynthia Torres

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
April 2018
Glad you have found your way there safely! That albergue and the village are a treat, but the real treasure can be found in the lovely inhabitants of Canfranc (not just the people, but also all the cats, sheep, goats, dogs, and so on). It may be quiet, but you are there in the extremely busy season! Enjoy the “crowds”
Last night 7 pilgrims. One Italian, one French, 4 Spaniards and one from Argentina. The Spaniards and Argentinian were walking together. Looked like a fun Male bonding experience for 5 guys in their 50's and 60's!

After a stroll through town it is relatively clear that many of the dwellings are second homes or AirBNB type arrangements. Still lots of people about although I suspect it will be quieter on Monday.

Phil and I are hoping to make our first shopping trip for groceries for ourselves and the albergue tomorrow. We're lower on toilet paper than I am comfortable with and we need more fruit and whole milk. The non-fat or reduced fat milk doesn't appeal to this pilgrim crowd.

We got several calls yesterday from pilgrims and a few passersby. The rules at this albergue strictly state you must arrive unsupported by bus or car. It is also strictly for pilgrims. Otherwise I think we'd be overwhelmed with weekend hikers and people looking for a "cheap" place to stay.
Canfranc Pueblo is such a gem and I hold it in my heart. It’s such a special and beautiful place to serve as hospitaleros! Enjoy!
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Glad you have found your way there safely! That albergue and the village are a treat, but the real treasure can be found in the lovely inhabitants of Canfranc (not just the people, but also all the cats, sheep, goats, dogs, and so on). It may be quiet, but you are there in the extremely busy season! Enjoy the “crowds”
Yes, one of the past hospitaleros was apparently feeding the "gatitos" so they are waiting in force every morning now when pilgrims leave. We enjoy the parade of chickens and ducks up and down and accross the street, too.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
The dining arrangements here in Canfranc are limited to bringing something with you to cook or eating at one of the two bars. El Mentidero 2.0 (roughly translated to the Gossip) is next door and offers al fresco dining and drinks. Their kitchen is somehow linked into the albergue electrical system so the staff are often coming in through the back door to flip breakers on when things get lively.

The other bar is somehow associated with the ApartmentHotel building across the square. They also offer alfresco dining and drinks.

All the bar food is racions or tapas and much of it is fried. No salads or pilgrim menues or combination plates. Although tasty, I cannot survive on fried calamari and patas bravas for 2 plus weeks.

Today I made my first trip to Jaca by bus to buy some things for Phil and I and for the albergue. We keep these purchases separate as albergue cleaning and breakfast supplies are purchased from the donations we receive from pilgrims.

The bus runs up and down the valley several times each day. With our morning cleaning and an opening time of 2 pm we need to take the 10:11 bus to Jaca and return at noon. It is bright yellow so not easy to miss. I was dropped off at the bus station in Jaca and the bus left again from the same point.

Let me say that Monday mid-day is not the least busy time to shop at the Dia in Jaca. Not only were there shoppers, but enormous carts of fruits and vegetables for restocking in this store with rather narrow aisles. I filled two large reusable grocery bags with as much as I could carry. Essentials items for the albergue included TP, bananas, oranges, bathroom cleaning products, milk and some breakfast muffins. For Phil and I, I got salad stuff, fruit and vegetables, eggs, cheese, and some yogurt.

We'll be fine for a few more days now and I did see two other grocery stores near the bus station as we were heading back to town. Lots of riders on the noon bus and most appeared to be heading further up the hill than me. It is 1.75 each way which seems reasonable given the cost of fuel. Hospitaleros who live closer (France or Spain) might drive and then could make less frequent trips with a larger list.
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
06,CF;13,CP;17,SSal;19,Ingles
Any chance your coordinator could liaise with someone in the village to help you out with a car trip every now and then? I guess you will have your ears pinned back to be on the alert! I am sure you will enjoy the time and leave the place spotless!
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
It may be possible. At other albergues that was sometimes the case although we have always managed without a car. There is a lot of variation. At one albergue which serves a larger number of pilgrims it was fine to take the bus to town and a taxi back, but we seldom have a full house right now so 2 kilos of oranges can go a long way!
 

Flog

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
When I volunteered there, I found myself taking the 10:11 bus to Jaca after morning chores with my empty backpack most days, filling it with supplies and then walking back, to arrive around 3pm to give the other hospi a break. It worked out well for me, though It was October and a lot cooler. I would usually meet our pilgrims from the night before coming the other way and it was sometimes a surprise but always a pleasant encounter, a couple of times we shared a coffee or beer at Castiello de Jaca.

Apart from the supermercados, there are a couple of good fruit and veg shops in Jaca, both just a couple of minutes from the bus station. The two supermercados in Estacion are reasonably well stocked too. I did enquire around the village to see if I might borrow a bicycle which would have added a new dimension to my grocery trips but in the end, walking prevailed.

Los gatitos, yes! Julio from the bar next door declared that there are fifty six of them in the village, but Maria Josė who takes care of them felt that number was exaggerated, but probably not by much. Keeping them out of the building can be a job in itself!
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Cloti, the last hosptalera, felt the prices for things were inflated at C. Estacion and Villanua which is why she recommended Jaca. Phil and I stopped in both villages while on the pilgrim segment of our trip and there are panaderias in both as well.

Also no food delivery trucks in this village.
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
As hospis, we found the walk up to Estacion or down to Villanua quite nice, followed by shopping and then a bus ride back with all of our acquisitions before we reopened at 2pm. Sure those small towns are a bit pricier, but the convenience and a nice hike were worth the added cost.

I did walk to Jaca once with my empty backpack, loaded it up at the grocery store, and then bussed back in time to open on time. For a small village, the variety of shopping excursions is quite extensive!

It should be noted that depending on the day of the week and the season, one or both of those local cafes may be closed. Pilgrims should be prepared to carry some food just in case.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
I walked the Aragones to Santiago as my second camino, beginning in Oloron Ste Marie and concluding in Santiago. I am considering walking it again next year, beginning somewhere on the Chemin d'Arles, maybe in Toulouse, where the airport facilitates travel from Canada. I do not think that I would likely stop overnight in Canfranc. The walking distances work for me from Somport to Canfranc Estacion, from there to Jaca, then on to San Juan de la Pena. And there is nothing to see in Canfranc but the new albergue. Unless I can get a position as a hospitalera in Canfranc, there are lots of gatitos to play with in other Spanish villages.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 CF
I walked the Aragones to Santiago as my second camino, beginning in Oloron Ste Marie and concluding in Santiago. I am considering walking it again next year, beginning somewhere on the Chemin d'Arles, maybe in Toulouse, where the airport facilitates travel from Canada. I do not think that I would likely stop overnight in Canfranc. The walking distances work for me from Somport to Canfranc Estacion, from there to Jaca, then on to San Juan de la Pena. And there is nothing to see in Canfranc but the new albergue. Unless I can get a position as a hospitalera in Canfranc, there are lots of gatitos to play with in other Spanish villages.

I started from Toulouse! Loved it. Every bit of it. But… it is France and you have to carry some food with you 😉 Accommodation was great. Stayed in Canfranc estación.
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
I walked the Aragones to Santiago as my second camino, beginning in Oloron Ste Marie and concluding in Santiago. I am considering walking it again next year, beginning somewhere on the Chemin d'Arles, maybe in Toulouse, where the airport facilitates travel from Canada. I do not think that I would likely stop overnight in Canfranc. The walking distances work for me from Somport to Canfranc Estacion, from there to Jaca, then on to San Juan de la Pena. And there is nothing to see in Canfranc but the new albergue. Unless I can get a position as a hospitalera in Canfranc, there are lots of gatitos to play with in other Spanish villages.
Hi @Albertagirl ,
If you were thinking of staying at the new monastery at San Juan de la Pena, the hotel is closed. Certainly don't take the Camino route down. Phil and I did a few weeks ago and it was terrible. Quitw dangerous,, so take the road.We stayed in Santa Cruz de los Seros in a rather luxurious place. There is a hostal, but no albergue there. Don't know if they are open all year. The albergue at Santa Cilia is open, but we did not stay there.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
Hi @Albertagirl ,
If you were thinking of staying at the new monastery at San Juan de la Pena, the hotel is closed. Certainly don't take the Camino route down. Phil and I did a few weeks ago and it was terrible. Quitw dangerous,, so take the road.We stayed in Santa Cruz de los Seros in a rather luxurious place. There is a hostal, but no albergue there. Don't know if they are open all year. The albergue at Santa Cilia is open, but we did not stay there.
I stayed at the albergue in Santa Cilia when I walked that route previously. I never walked up or down the road, as I took a bus from Jaca, which took us to the upper monastery. The tourist office in Jaca told me about the bus going up to San Juan de la Pena that day, which was not actually on a regular schedule. I shall check with them when I get to Jaca. I had already heard about the closure of the new monastery hotel, but I have no way of knowing whether the bus from Jaca or the hotel at the new monastery, one or both, will be functioning when I again walk through. I am more committed to a return to the old monastery and can check with the tourist office in Jaca if it is open to visitors and what transportation there is available. I would be willing to walk down on the road, carefully, but have heard nothing good about the camino route.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
There is not a bus at this time per the tourist office in Jaca. We had to use a cab. I am happy to share the drivers name and info. Both the old and new monastery are open as of this summer. There also used to be a minibus which took visitors between the two sites, but it isn't running as of now either.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Its early yet, but so far one pilgrim--a young Spaniard who has declared he is ready to move in here permanently! He asked about swimming in the river, but has contented himself with sunning upstairs on the terrace after a shower for now.

The finishes in this place are pretty extraordinary. Black slate floors, natural wood cabinetry for each pilgrim to store his or her backpack. Two beautiful kitchens, although the upper one is unused as it is really just more to clean and it is easier to let everyone use the lower level one. Dishwashers, multiple microwaves, a cooktop and an actual oven!

There is a large island for breakfast service. Plenty of storage and cabinetry. There is even an elevator although it isn't in use right now. We can see that there's heat with lots of radiators in common and sleeping areas. Also some kind of loft style ductwork and we're not sure of its purpose since there are clearly radiators.

We certainly don't need the heating at this time of year and there is instruction about when it can be turned on and at what settings in the hospitalero book. There's beautiful exposed stone work. It is really a luxury type facility for a donativo.

Each bunk space offers privacy with a roller shade and there's a light, outlet and shelf in each cubby. Anyway, nice place to volunteer and the pilgrims are all thrilled when they get checked in. I am sure the word will spread. A pilgrim earlier in the week said a priest in France told her about us and we get a large number of phone calls asking if we're open and if we have beds (which we always do at this point). I usually have to go through the spiel-- Yes, we're open. No, we don't take reservations. We are only for pilgrims with credentials. See you soon.

Other frequent answers: Yes, we have a kitchen, but bring food if you want to use it. No, we don't serve a communal meal, but we do serve a simple breakfast. We open at 2 pm and close at 10 pm. Yes, we are volunteers. Yes, all the way from the United States. Yes, we speak some Spanish, but please speak slowly. And thank you, we love it here, too.
 
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mspath

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
The heat works quite well and it’s needed as snow reaches that valley from late October to early April! The open ductwork (no fans) simply helps circulate air through the entire three story building.

Unlike most Albergues, the kitchens have an excellent array of utensils, cups, plates, bowls, pans, and pots! As noted, though, pilgrims should bring their own food as there is no proper store in town, though the adjacent bar usually carrOES some basic foodstuffs in limited amounts (Eggs, bread, cheese, cured meat, tuna, pasta).
 

Barbara

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, Norte (twice)and Primitivo, Sureste, In France From home Tours and Vézelay, also Le Puy.
It's a lovely route. I cycled from Lescar and went by the Foz de Lumbier (spelling?). Also a diversion via Lourdes. All worth doing. I went home from Estella via a not very hilly route which included a disused railway and got the train at Bayonne. Must do the rest from further east in France one day.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Well it is 4:30 pm and only one pilgrim. I had one call so we are holding out hope that another pilgrim will arrive.

Phil went with me to town this morning and we found an Eroski that was bigger (more selection), less crowded, and still close to the bus station. We also visited the Asian Bazaar across from the police station and sourced some tape for posting signs.

We saw some pilgrims around 10 am in town but it was too early for them to stop for the day. It is cooler today so walking is more pleasant.

The big news of the day is that there will be a fair on Saturday and Sunday with a Camino Medieval Festival. There will be a presentation here at the albergue up in the 3rd floor lounge and a bit of an open air market. Should be fun.
 
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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
We ended up with 4 Spanish pilgrims last night. The final arrival had called me earlier and he arrived exhausted. He said he took a Bla Bla car from Valencia early in the morning to Somport and called me before he started walking in the early afternoon. He had a huge pack as he is vegan and was carrying what seemed like an endless supply of oatmeal and nuts. At breakfast he also pulled a big bag out of his pack with jewelry making materials and proceeded to make me a necklace.

He is a musician and an artisan and he says he is in love with the Camino and tries to walk a different one each year. He played me a song from the internet and said he used to be in a band with the singer, Jeannette, in the 70's or 80's. Our three female pilgrims were also quite lively this morning and it was an enjoyable breakfast conversation.

Phil and I are doing the "deep clean" today in anticipation of the weekend activities. This includes the little used 3rd floor which is a little dusty.

We had a pilgrim couple from Italy who stopped in to get a stamp from us. They own an albergue in Italy and are trying to convince others that the "hospitality" that volunteers like us offer is important. "I knew you were the real thing because you welcomed us in and immediately offered us a cool drink," said the woman. We made some notes together about the rest of this Camino or at least what we could tell them. I told her I thought as a volunteer it was important to understand what a pilgrim might be experiencing by also being a pilgrim first. They went on their way after a few photos together as they had a reservation in Villanua.

We're open. No pilgrims yet, but someone called a few days ago to say they would be here today. Photo below of my breakfast masterpiece.
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Only one pilgrim last night. He is a secondary math teacher. It was a quiet day, but gave us time to spiff the place up. I notified our local city administrator/official about a leaking shower head and shower cabinet. I am sure it is an endless task to keep things running smoothly and we are but 2 hospitaleros in the stream of volunteers this season.

We will run to Jaca this morning for more bananas. TP, and to buy bus tickets for our exit in August. After seeing a few people get skunked on tickets in the past weeks, I want to have them far in advance! We take the bus down to Jaca, then bus to Zaragoza which is cheaper and faster than the train. At Zaragoza we'll switch to an AVE train to Madrid Atoche which is near our hotel and final home base before our journey home.

Not sure if I mentioned that Lufthansa cancelled our flight home for Aug 4 last week so I spent a morning this week waiting on hold and finally rebooking through United. One less transfer. We get home at the same time and were able to preserve our Economy Plus seating. Hope they don't change it again before we leave Spain.

No Mass at the local church this week and the local bus schedule doesn't work for us to attend in Canfranc Estacion before we need to open. We attend when we can so maybe the priest will be here again next weekend. Our local contact will keep us advised.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
5 pm. No pilgrims yet. 😢 I was able to buy bus and train tickets this morning for our exit Aug 1. Our local contact says we can print tickets for the train at the Tourism office in Canfranc Estacion so we'll make a trip up there next week for that.

Made some banana bread so maybe the aroma will attract a few pilgrims. We had a family stop in for a stamp, but that's it so far.

So the most interesting thing I can share today is a few secrets about the less glamorous side of hospitalero life. Phil undertook one of my most dreaded jobs today. The shower was draining slowly in one of the men's stalls. He took up the drain cover and with his heavy rubber cleaning gloves (brought from home) he cleaned all of the hair out of the track and the drain. Yuck!!! So glad he is here to do it since it makes me want to hurl just thinking about it! He'll do the other three before we leave.

We were taught about this important task at hospitalero training a few years ago. Something I did yesterday (not part of hospitalero training) was empty the lint filter and the water reservoir in the dryer. We have only used it once to finish drying laundry for a late arriving pilgrim. Goodness Sakes! No wonder his clothes didn't dry! Looks like it had not been attended to in a while and the lint in the filter was even wet!

Also today, I accidently child locked myself out of the cooktop so had to watch a YouTube video to figure out how to unlock it. Such is the glamorous life of the hospitero team. No bedbugs though in any daily checks we do so all is currently right with the world.
 

Cynthia Torres

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
April 2018
5 pm. No pilgrims yet. 😢 I was able to buy bus and train tickets this morning for our exit Aug 1. Our local contact says we can print tickets for the train at the Tourism office in Canfranc Estacion so we'll make a trip up there next week for that.

Made some banana bread so maybe the aroma will attract a few pilgrims. We had a family stop in for a stamp, but that's it so far.

So the most interesting thing I can share today is a few secrets about the less glamorous side of hospitalero life. Phil undertook one of my most dreaded jobs today. The shower was draining slowly in one of the men's stalls. He took up the drain cover and with his heavy rubber cleaning gloves (brought from home) he cleaned all of the hair out of the track and the drain. Yuck!!! So glad he is here to do it since it makes me want to hurl just thinking about it! He'll do the other three before we leave.

We were taught about this important task at hospitalero training a few years ago. Something I did yesterday (not part of hospitalero training) was empty the lint filter and the water reservoir in the dryer. We have only used it once to finish drying laundry for a late arriving pilgrim. Goodness Sakes! No wonder his clothes didn't dry! Looks like it had not been attended to in a while and the lint in the filter was even wet!

Also today, I accidently child locked myself out of the cooktop so had to watch a YouTube video to figure out how to unlock it. Such is the glamorous life of the hospitero team. No bedbugs though in any daily checks we do so all is currently right with the world.
 
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Yearly and Various 2014-2019
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By now you guys will hopefully have fallen into bed for a well-deserved rest.
What a day! Drains, driers, cooktops...but at least you have some pilgrims to feed in the morning.
Good rest, well done!
And thank you for your posts. May they encourage some of the rest of us to do this someday (I speak for myself as one who talks but has yet to do...)
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Our two pilgrims enjoyed some chocolate chip banana bread and I packed up a bit for them to take along with them. The plaza is abuzz with music and excitement. I will post some photos. People dressed up in period costumes and tourists alike. Vendors or food and crafts are set up. The music show will start at 12:30 so I am waiting on Phil to finish his shower so we can take in the festivities. I hope have pilgrims today as this is pretty neat! More sedate than San Fermin or some other Fiestas, but still fun and interesting.

Earier someone called who wanted to sell me some kind of cleaning products or service. I am not sure which. When I asked him to speak more slowly, he just spoke louder. Eventually he gave up on me.

Another call just now from an Italian pilgrim who didn't speak Spanish, English, or German (my limited language repetoir). I understood he wanted a bed and told him we would be open in English and Spanish and we would see him later. I think he understood as he seemed happy.
 
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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Yep, it is hopping today. The band made the rounds and then ducked into the city hall to change until their second performance later today. We bought some peaches, wine, cheese, and artisan peppered bacon. We have just over one more week so I am sure we'll eat it and/or share with pilgrims.. It is pretty hot so the bars are busy now with people drinking cold drinks.
 
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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Two pilgrims tonight here with the festivities and seem to be enjoying it. One from Spain and the other from Italy. Love the band Barzonia who appear to be both excellent musicians and actors. They probably play a lot of festivals similar to this. Everyone was clapping and dancing along from kids to grandparents and everyone in between. More Fair activities tomorrow! A second performance this evening of all the displays, music, sword fighting, fencing, horsemanship. Etc, but it was cooler that at noon.
 

Cynthia Torres

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
April 2018
Two pilgrims tonight here with the festivities and seem to be enjoying it. One from Spain and the other from Italy. Love the band Barzonia who appear to be both excellent musicians and actors. They probably play a lot of festivals similar to this. Everyone was clapping and dancing along from kids to grandparents and everyone in between. More Fair activities tomorrow! A second performance this evening of all the displays, music, sword fighting, fencing, horsemanship. Etc, but it was cooler that at noon.
How wonderful that you get to experience this feria during your time in Canfranc!!
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Ewww!!! Phil cleaned the other three shower drains this morning. Thank goodness he's here to do it. I am a nurse. But phlegm and hair are two things which make me retch!!! I can clean up blood, vomit, and poop all day. But I have the utmost respect for my house keeping and respiratory therapy colleagues!

The fair continues today. No music, but talks and presentations by a pilgrim actor dressed in traditional garb as well as the vendors. There's a medieval encampment for people to witness crafts and the old ways, too.

FYI, if your in the area, there is a Cheese Fest at Canfranc Estacion on July 30, too.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Yes
Thank you so much for pics and videos. I want to walk this route myself one day and hopefully stay in this albergue!

Forgive me if this has been mentioned already but is this "festival" always the same week/days? Every year? It would be nice to be able to plan, so I would end up there at the right time 🥳 !
 
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J Willhaus

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Not sure, but they probably have not had one for at least two years. They also had something the third week of June or so. I will take a photo and attach of all the stuff going on here and at Canfranc Estacion. You can see under the Feria section on the first page the Camino Feria.


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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Two pilgrims so far tonight. They are a man and wife from Spain.

During the noon presentation of a Knight on horseback fighting a Knight on foot, The horse came skidding around the cobblestone plaza and unseated his rider from the leather and wooden saddle! Not rehearsed. But the rider remounted the steed dressed in chain mail and armor to the cheers of the crowd. The horse was apparently startled (as was everyone watching with gasps of horror) and the exhibition was a bit abbreviated. We will see how it goes at the 6 pm performance goes.
 
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Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
It’s funny to read these accounts of bustling Canfranc Pueblo as we have been through there three times (twice as hospitaleros) and saw more stray cats than people! 😂. That village really comes alive in the summer, but don’t expect as much in April, October, or November!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
06,CF;13,CP;17,SSal;19,Ingles
Ewww!!! Phil cleaned the other three shower drains this morning. Thank goodness he's here to do it. I am a nurse. But phlegm and hair are two things which make me retch!!! I can clean up blood, vomit, and poop all day. But I have the utmost respect for my house keeping and respiratory therapy colleagues!

The fair continues today. No music, but talks and presentations by a pilgrim actor dressed in traditional garb as well as the vendors. There's a medieval encampment for people to witness crafts and the old ways, too.

FYI, if your in the area, there is a Cheese Fest at Canfranc Estacion on July 30, too.
You are doing a great pr job, Janet, you and Phil.
Maybe the Aragones will be my next one... listen - now is now. You enjoy where you are, and I will enjoy these few days in Pamplona that are mine to disfrutar!
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Happy St James Day everyone! Although the Feria de Camino is now over here, the tourist office called last night to ask if the Albergue would have any special activities today. My only special activity will be to take the bus up to Canfranc Estacion to get our train tickets printed and then walk back down.

Our pilgrim couple are experienced walkers and old school walking without electronics. We went over the route this morning and where there are fountains. We talked about going to see the monasteries at San Juan de la Pena and the upcoming albergue options. I gave them my saved taxi numbers as they asked, but not sure how they will call if needed. It isn't like there is a pilgrim every 60 meters or so who can call for you on this route or that you can borrow a phone from.

One of our relief Hospis sent a WhatsApp last night. He will be here on Sunday. He was here when the Albergue opened on Aug 1 last year. Lots of return hospis here it seems. With HosVol we go somewhere different each time although you can make requests for assignments. FICS has fewer albergues to staff though. Both are good organizations doing good work through their volunteers.
 

LavanyaLea

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances (May/June 2022)
Other frequent answers: Yes, we have a kitchen, but bring food if you want to use it. No, we don't serve a communal meal, but we do serve a simple breakfast. We open at 2 pm and close at 10 pm.
Hi Janet, do you know if this albergue will welcome friendly dogs? 🐶
 
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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
It's 7:30. I think we'll get one more pilgrim who called a bit ago. We have two pilgrims on bikes now who have biked from home in the Netherlands. The son who is 15 told me the summit today at Somport was one of the hardest, but most amazing things he had ever seen or done. I remember what it was like for my son to be a flatlander from Kansas and seeing the Rocky Mountains for the first time.

I made some spaghetti bolonaise tonight out of a mystery sausage that I purchased and removed from the casing. Phil thought it was good so I am not going to try to find out what the meat really consists of since we do have leftovers for tomorrow and I don't want to put us off eating it.

Speaking of mystery meals, our Dutch guests ate at the bar next door. Several things on the menu don't really have an easy interpretation so they ordered something and were pleased to enjoy what came out of the kitchen. They came away satisfied customers.

We may need a trip to Jaca tomorrow. Low on TP again and need more cleaning stuff for the kitchen as well as more bleach. These liquids are heavy so it doesn't do to wait until you also need milk or juice for a trip.
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Wonders never cease. Our late guests finally arrived from Somport, a man and wife. The man remembered Phil and I from Grañón where I taught them how to make homemade egg noodles. That was 4 years ago! We had been to the bakery to sing as well so it must have been a good memory for him to recall Los Americanos hospitaleros.
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Wonders never cease. Our late guests finally arrived from Somport, a man and wife. The man remembered Phil and I from Grañón where I taught them how to make homemade egg noodles. That was 4 years ago! We had been to the bakery to sing as well so it must have been a good memory for him to recall Los Americanos hospitaleros.
Wow, he had a lot of photos of that afternoon and evening in Grañón. Some had me in them teaching pilgrims how to mix, kneed, roll, and cut egg noodles for chicken and noodles later that night. We all took a photo together here and said we will meet again another year at another albergue. He's a big guy and he joined right in the meal prep along with 6 or so others that day. Great to know we can make a lasting and positive impression even as foreigners in a foreign land.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
It's after 5:30 and no pilgrims yet. Yesterday they all came with phone calls, but the phone has been strangely silent today. I started a baked mac and cheese and last night just as we sat down to eat our spaghetti was when our first two pilgrims arrived. I am hoping it will be the same tonight.

We made a trip to Jaca today for the cleaning supplies, a bag of pilgrim oranges, and a few staples for Phil and I. We went to yet another grocery store which appears to be an Argonese chain in this area. Among the curious items on the shelf were bags of breadcrumbs specifically for migas. Its a dish kind of like breadcrumbs fried and the batch I had at a restaurant was topped with a fried egg. A good way to use up stale bread much like our dressing or stuffing at home I suppose. We had time today to stop for a coffee and make a quick pharmacy stop and still had plenty of time for the bus.

We are catching up on a variety of Camino reading. I've read many of the 100 books available on Kindle over the years. Some are better than others, but it passes the afternoon.
Phil reads a lot of what I call Space junk, which is technically Science Fiction, but on my recommendation. He's reading a few Camino books I have finished and that are on our shared account.

On the home front, I am getting messages from students and coworkers and other University news which emphasizes that our time here is growing shorter. I hope to retire in 20 more months after 2 more 9 month University contract years. Then we'll see. We talk about living in Spain at least part time, but with ailing parents and grandkids the future is still hazy.

Tomorrow and the next few days are supposed to be rainy so we'll see if any hardy souls brave the cool and wet conditions. In the meantime, I will be here waiting with either a cool cup of water or a warming drink as conditions dictate.
 
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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
No pilgrims last night, but an early pilgrim today who had walked from Canfranc Estacion and asked to get his first stamp from us. We invited him in for a coffee. He lives in Zaragoza and said the heat has simply destroyed his tomatoes this year. Too hot for the blooms to set! I understood all that in Spanish because I like to garden myself and know about tomatoes and the heat.

He is also a hospi and has been at Zamora which was our first posting a few years ago. He was loving this Camino although pilgrims to talk to are scarce. He said he can't believe it is not more popular with the beauty of the surroundings.

We'll take this morning to go down to Villanua and walk around in their old Town which we missed as pilgrims. Will get some more chocolate chips and greener bananas and I'll make banana bread again this afternoon with the three over ripe ones we have left from last week. Back to open by 2 pm and hope for pilgrims. It's much cooler today with storms forecast for tonight and rain the next couple of days. It will be welcome in nature, but not perhaps by pilgrims.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Villanua is a nice place. Tons of vacation homes and townhouses, but the old town looks great and still a lot of locals. There's a church with regular Mass times posted, a library, bakery, a few stores. Also swimming pool, parks, a hostal, youth hostal, two albergues, and several restaurants and bars. Regular bus service serves the village up and down the valley. It's small, but with more services.
It is only about 4 or 5 km from Canfranc Pueblo.

Phil and I came home and had "PLT" sandwiches with the artisan pancetta I bought last weekend. We'll open soon and I will make banana bread this afternoon.

I am getting lots of pm's from people with an interest in this Camino so keep your questions coming. If this thread does something to share the word about this route then I am glad.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Another long day and evening growing longer without a single pilgrim. No phone calls. Just a few curious tourists reading the sign out front about the abergue and the funds to remodel it. The sign chronicles the cost of the facility and is a part of the revitalization of the area.

I attached some photos earlier in the thread, but I'll add a few more to give you an Idea of the sleeping areas. Each "room" houses four bunks and there are handmade wooden Lockers with shelves for each pilgrim's backpack. The mattresses are nearly new and covered with nearly new mattress covers with a water proof lining. Each bunk has a shelf, a light and a plug in as well as a roller blind for privacy. The lights are all on timers in the halls and bathrooms. Pilgrims are given a clean cotton sheet and pillowcase. It I had one complaint it would be that the memory foam pillows are really too firm for my liking.

It's a lovely place and I hope over time more pilgrims will stop and enjoy it. Phil wants me to step out with him for a glass of vino tinto next door. If that doesn't bring pilgrims, I don't know what will.

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Lourdes, Aragonese May-June 2018 incomplete
I stayed at the albergue in Santa Cilia when I walked that route previously. I never walked up or down the road, as I took a bus from Jaca, which took us to the upper monastery. The tourist office in Jaca told me about the bus going up to San Juan de la Pena that day, which was not actually on a regular schedule. I shall check with them when I get to Jaca. I had already heard about the closure of the new monastery hotel, but I have no way of knowing whether the bus from Jaca or the hotel at the new monastery, one or both, will be functioning when I again walk through. I am more committed to a return to the old monastery and can check with the tourist office in Jaca if it is open to visitors and what transportation there is available. I would be willing to walk down on the road, carefully, but have heard nothing good about the camino route.
On Sunday from Sante Cilia we took a taxi to visit the monastery.
 

Flog

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
Have you guys had a tour of the church across the plaza yet? The interior is in serious need of remedial works but it's such a beautiful building and the view from the bell tower puts the albergue nicely into perspective. Maria Jose holds the keys, you will probably have a few cats joining you!!

The tour of the cave at Villanua and the folklore surrounding it is fascinating too, if you can find a time slot that suits..
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Have you guys had a tour of the church across the plaza yet? The interior is in serious need of remedial works but it's such a beautiful building and the view from the bell tower puts the albergue nicely into perspective. Maria Jose holds the keys, you will probably have a few cats joining you!!

The tour of the cave at Villanua and the folklore surrounding it is fascinating too, if you can find a time slot that suits..
We have been to mass at church and will go again this week so we've been inside. I am not a heights person so would likely skip the bell tower perspective.

Talked again today about the Cave tour today. Times are limited. We peeked in the gate on our walking segment of this trip a few weeks ago

A glass of wine did not bring any pilgrims, but we did get a couple of calls about the upcoming weekend. I assured 2 people that we haven't been full yet, but don't take reservations. There is some kind of "skating" competition at C. Estacion this upcoming weekend so housing seems tight up higher on the mountain.

Supposed to be raining tomorrow and Friday so may stay around here and take some pictures of the local area if we don't have to go into Jaca.
 

Bala

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015, 2018, 2022
Another long day and evening growing longer without a single pilgrim. No phone calls. Just a few curious tourists reading the sign out front about the abergue and the funds to remodel it. The sign chronicles the cost of the facility and is a part of the revitalization of the area.

I attached some photos earlier in the thread, but I'll add a few more to give you an Idea of the sleeping areas. Each "room" houses four bunks and there are handmade wooden Lockers with shelves for each pilgrim's backpack. The mattresses are nearly new and covered with nearly new mattress covers with a water proof lining. Each bunk has a shelf, a light and a plug in as well as a roller blind for privacy. The lights are all on timers in the halls and bathrooms. Pilgrims are given a clean cotton sheet and pillowcase. It I had one complaint it would be that the memory foam pillows are really too firm for my liking.

It's a lovely place and I hope over time more pilgrims will stop and enjoy it. Phil wants me to step out with him for a glass of vino tinto next door. If that doesn't bring pilgrims, I don't know what will.

View attachment 130148 View attachment 130149 View attachment 130150 View attachment 130151
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Northpole

New Member
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Primitivo 2023
I attached some photos earlier in the thread, but I'll add a few more to give you an Idea of the sleeping areas. Each "room" houses four bunks and there are handmade wooden Lockers with shelves for each pilgrim's backpack. The mattresses are nearly new and covered with nearly new mattress covers with a water proof lining. Each bunk has a shelf, a light and a plug in as well as a roller blind for privacy. The lights are all on timers in the halls and bathrooms. Pilgrims are given a clean cotton sheet and pillowcase. It I had one complaint it would be that the memory foam pillows are really too firm for my liking.

It's a lovely place and I hope over time more pilgrims will stop and enjoy it. Phil wants me to step out with him for a glass of vino tinto next door. If that doesn't bring pilgrims, I don't know what will.
I had to laugh at your last sentence! :) Thanks for sharing the photos, the place looks just fabulous! I hope and believe that it will become more known and more people will start coming.
 
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Lourdes, Aragonese May-June 2018 incomplete
I note that there has been a big promotion by the tourism department of the Camino. I am currently in Urdeus de Lerda. I would love to discuss with or provide a list of things which would make this route more accessible and attract more to the rural areas. Currently the route and the albergues need ...
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
I note that there has been a big promotion by the tourism department of the Camino. I am currently in Urdeus de Lerda. I would love to discuss with or provide a list of things which would make this route more accessible and attract more to the rural areas. Currently the route and the albergues need ...
Well certainly sections of the route in the Aragon valley could use more water points that work! Also if there were more pilgrims, some entrepreneurs with cafe mobiles would be welcome along some stretches!

People here like pilgrims, but there probably isn't as much profit and in the upper part of the valley, sports and tourism is the mainstay of business. For every pilgrim there are at least 25 or more hikers and day hikers. Everyone has a backpack and hiking poles, but few have a shell or credential.
 

Phil W

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2016; Hospitalero 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021
Janet soaked beans overnight. They're smelling good as they cook. I'll enjoy them later.

We went for a walk this morning to the old Bridge that was rebuilt in 1599 by Ramon. The original Bridge was destroyed in a flood of the Aragon River. Bridge has a marker on the parapet saying it was built by Ramin in 1599. Pretty neat.

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J Willhaus

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Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
An overcast, cool day. Perfect for walking. Phil and I snapped some photos of things in the area that we had passed on our Camino segment of the trip and I put on a pot of beans with the remains of our panceta for later.

We ran into one of our local contacts Jose Maria who at 10 am wondered if we'd like to have a beer or a glass of wine. We begged off due to the early hour and she advised us of another nice path nearby to an barranco which is a canyon or gorge. We'll see that before we leave for sure!

Around 1 pm, I saw two peregrinas sit down at the bar next door so we opened a little early and signed them in. Again it is a very small world. They spoke excellent English because they had worked a summer at the St Mary's gift shop in Glacier National Park. Glacier is near to our hearts and we've camped and hiked and visited in all seasons because we used to live nearby in Spokane, WA. It is one of our favorite places in the world.

The pair had hoped to return to Glacier for another season, but the pandemic had other plans. The aunt of one of the two stayed with us last week and had shared the news of the albergue with her niece. Nice to have guests again. I hope there will be more later.
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
Our peregrinas made their small dinner and we all ate together last night. One experienced a knee turn yesterday and is worried she may not be able to walk today. No pharmacy here for a different knee support. They toyed with the idea of busing to a pharmacy and back last night, but the bus schedule would have gotten them back late. We will see today how the knee is. They plan to end their Camino in Jaca.

Both are headed off to work in other lands this fall. One graduated from the university with a degree in Business so will travel to the Caribbean to work in a hotel for a while. The other has a position in Sweden with a car manufacturer as an engineer.

This is their first Camino adventure. They met working in the US at the National Park and remain fast friends although they are from different parts of Spain. They liked the solitude of this Camino and enjoyed their time walking in France.

An FYI, I forgot to add sugar to the banana bread but it was plenty sweet with the bananas and chocolate. The young women asked for seconds and of course there is some for breakfast or to send along with them. I hate to waste anything and am loathe to throw out an overripe banana so it is a good use for fruit when pilgrims don't eat it.
 
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J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2022
A lot of rain this morning and even a little hail. I thought it might discourage pilgrims, but at 4 pm two peregrinas about my age showed up. They walked from Somport, but said they did not start until after the rain stopped. One is on her first Camino and the other is a Camino veteran and hospitalera. She has also volunteered at San Miguel in Estella where Phil and I were in 2019. Some may remember that I had to leave for a family emergency that year and our own @kirkie from the forum showed up to give Phil a hand for a few days until another last minute HosVol volunteer could be recruited.

It has been quiet. Our bar next door has been closed due to issues with the "pipes" according to their sign. They are due to reopen at 5 pm. Our other bar was open earlier, but they close in the afternoon and usually re-open at 6:30. Of course with the rain there have been fewer tourists today anyway.

Our guests tonight reminded us that everyone in Spain will start their vacations tomorrow as Aug 1 is a Monday. They predict many more pilgrims in the coming week. We did have several calls about the weekend yesterday and the tourist office in C. Estacion just called to say they are sending us another pilgrim now. No word if he is walking or on a bike though. We'll keep our eyes and the door open though.
 
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