The Camino Frances

The Camino Frances

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tea, harmonicas and guitar

My fingers are freezing, as the computer is in an open entrance to El Pilar! Dave and I had tortilla and salad and cafe con leche here yesterday, with Isabelle. I gave her a pin of  the Toronto city hall, and she gave me one of hers. She is great fun - wish I spoke more Spanish!

Yesterday´s tea  was held in the salon for 33  people ( actually only 28 showed up - the rest were eating or sleeping).  In addition to  tea and oatmeal fudgies, it included duets on  harmonicas from a Korean couple, and hours of guitar by Jonathan, and American singer and actor. My favourite was Hotel California, but the pilgrims like the fire in the fireplace best. It is about 8´outside and maybe 10  inside, except in the salon when the fire is on, and the kitchen when there is cooking. About 12 pilgrims cooked yesterday - too cold to even leave the albergue.

We had a pilgrim with bedbugs yesterday - we washed all her clothes, and her bedding after she left, in 60' and hours in the dryer - it is still at work. We sprayed her backpack and hard stuff and left it in a bag. And we sprayed the ísolation room when she left this morning. She was incredibly grateful, and left a huge donation. She said she cried in the shower at our kindness, and from relief that she was receiving help, and she teared up  when she left this morning.

It tell the pilgrims we have bottomless pots of tea and coffee, and they take us at our word. It is unusal to find coffee when you leave in the morning, and doubly unusual to find tea, so they are very grateful.

The highlight  of the day for me was receiving a card from my daughter Aislinn, all the way from Kelowna, BC. What a treat to get mail, and such a special card. Phoning  from  here is very hard, because of the time difference, and people´s busy lives, not to mention our schedules, so contact by mail and through this blog is  so sustaining  for me.  Thanks for reading and commenting. 

Aislinn asked for a picture of the priests, and so far I haven´t found one, but the first link is to this stretch of the Camino, and the second is  to the Monasterio.

There were 25 wet pilgrims waiting when we opened before 2 yesterday, so today´s notice says we will open at 1 pm. Who knows what or who today will bring.

Dalene la hospitalera


  1. Just read your blog again. I so look forward to it with my tea in the morning. What a lovely thoughtful daughter you have. It is getting cooler here in TO but sunny with the odd rain. Read about the riots in Spain but am guessing you are far removed from them. I know exactly where the computers are located at Pilar as I stayed there. You are so right it is chilly in the computer room. Keep warm Darlene and keep on blogging. Love J

  2. Wish I could have a cup of your Spanish tea with you...

    It is so nice that you take the time to help with bed bugs. That must be so difficult for a pilgrim to deal with.

    I'm so glad you received the card in time!

    Hoping you will still be able to blog while you are walking the Camino yourself...

    Lovelovelove Aisy