A common man marvels at uncommon things. A wise man marvels at the commonplace. CONFUCIUS

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

A Rustic Night

The Pyrenees were now only a week away and I was looking forward to my 1st sight of the mountains. I would meet very few pilgrims from here till I joined the Spanish part of the route, the true Camino, at Roncesvalles.

After a much needed rest day in Eauze I set off on 8 November for Nogaro and Aire-sur-l'Adour. In both places I spent the night. In Nogaro the girl at the tourist office directed me rather embarrassedly to a small house owned by the Church. I was assured a priest would turn up to welcome me, but he never came. However the door was unlocked so I went inside and tried to make myself as comfortable as I could in the cramped, untidy and somewhat dirty accommodation. It was all very rustique. There was no bedroom so I laid out my sleeping bag in a small communal dining room on 2 filthy mattresses I found, which I covered with a plastic table cloth. I had a restless night. Every time I changed position I slipped down onto the bare, freezing-cold floor. In Aire-sur-l'Adour I slept much more soundly in a dormitory offered at a cheap pilgrim's rate by the Hotel de la Paix.

In Manciet I passed an intriguing bull ring which was used for cattle racing (see photo). Soon I would cross the border into the département of Les Landes, the 2nd largest département in France, and one of the least populated and most densely forested.


Anonymous said...

This is interesting to read. Great blog

The Solitary Walker said...

Thank you. Lots more to come!