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Posting 3:  08/04/2006,  Casanova.

Well its been an interesting few days.  Left Zenarruza on the Sunday, Br Louis had found someone to take me down to the bus stop and there was a bus in twenty minutes.  The chap kindly decided to buy me coffee so I didn’t have so long to wait on my own.  The bus came on time and magically I had only 10 min's to wait in Bilbao for the bus to San Sabastian.  After that it was train to Irun.

Next day was a long 11 hour trek across the top of Spain by train, arriving in Santiago just after 20:30.  It was very strange to stand again in Obradoiro Square.  The last time I was there I didn’t think I would be there again.

The following day saw me setting off shortly after lunchtime, reaching Lavacolla as planned.  Only went wrong once.  As I sailed past two 'aul fellas' standing in the field I put down there quizzical looks to the fact I was walking in the opposite direction to Santiago.  Not a bit of it.  They were wondering why I was not on the Camino at all! They then helpfully insisted that I take a shortcut back along the Camino which left me even further away from where I wanted to go!  Nonetheless I arrived safely and booked into the same hotel La Concha which did a room en suite for 20 euro and a 'menu de dias' for 7.

It was the following day that things went awry. For some reason I thought I would be able to walk 30 km's on day 2.  This was somewhat optimistic and I managed about 12.  So I am about a day behind though I should be able to  catch up.
Yesterday was hard and when I arrived at the refugio I just lay on the bed and ached.

Today has not been quite so bad, but when I reached my planned stop, I was told by the lady who keeps the refugio key that it was closed for refurbishment and would not be open till August or perhaps September.  My heart sank.  The next accommodation of any kind wasn’t for another 7.5 km's and there was no way I could make that.  I asked if there was a campsite.  "Yes" she said, "here"' pointing to grass in front of her cafe/bar.  I was very grateful.  She kept saying it would be cold & I re-assured her I had thermals - this was mainly in sign language as my Spanish, although improving, is still  negligible.  She even went into the refugio and brought me out a blanket.  So here I am using the tent unexpectedly sooner than I had thought and while its quite pleasant now while the sun is still out, I suspect it will indeed be a cold night!
Post 02.
Post 04.