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Published: September 7th 2015
25 August 2015, Tuesday Exploring Pamplona and picking up the Camino through the city that we had bypassed to get to our Apartment with Inigo and Ines.
Inigo and Ines stayed in the apartment so Harlan is up early and starts breakfast for everyone: peppers, cucumbers, poached eggs, toast, fried onions and ham. Inigo has taken the next two days off work so we can do things with them.
The first item after breakfast is to pickup the backpack from the repair shop. The repair is beautifully done and the backpack will now last the entire camino, I am sure. Next on the agenda is the SIM card for my phone so I can make local calls in Spain. I go to the first MOVISTAR cell phone shop across from the restaurant Bodegon Sarria and wait for 45 minutes to be told I can not get one at this store must go to another about 200 meters up the street across from Plaza del Torros. Now I am 3rd in this que. Each person takes a minimum of 35 minutes for the one and only one person running the store to help. So about an hour and half into
my wait I send a text to Inigo asking if he can come help me. It is a good thing as he arrived just as I was trying to explain what I needed and the Movistar shop person spoke zero English. After some time I understand that I buy the SIM card, pay a prepay for calls, internet and text and download an app to make free calls and send text messages when I have the WIFI or internet connection on the phone. Now that was simple wasn't it? Oh, and they cannot accept my passport so the SIM card has to be issued in Inigo's name. Exactly 35 minutes later we are finished! And my spanish phone number is 0034 684 041 323. I am so grateful for Inigo's help. He tells me how they learned while traveling in US how much you need help from a resident. Then he reminds me of how I helped him get his SIM card setup on his cell phone in the Henderson. (I do not remember this).
Back at the apartment we plan the rest of the day. Karen and I explore the Pamplona Cathedral, then we will walk the Camino
Early sculpture of Madonna and Child
One of numerous statues in cathedral
de Santiago trail through Pamplona from the City Hall to the edge of town near the two universities, one public and one private operated by Opus Dei.
The museum in the cathedral is fantastic showing a timeline of the founding of the city by the romans and up through the middle-ages to the current past. Important events in history are noted and many features of the cathedral are described. Cathedrals were really fortifications to help defend the cities during the 12th through 17th centuries. The last section is in the bell tower showing the details of how the cathedral was constructed using the mechanical advantage of multiple pulleys to lift the heavy stone columns and capitals into position. After more than an hour we are saturated and head outside to start our walk through town.
Many historic buildings that are part of the Spanish history with unique architecture and grand hand carved doors are along the Camino de Santiago route.
When we have started our walk we send a text message to Inigo telling him when we expect to be at a certain intersection and he and Ines can pick us up there to drive to the
Eunate Church. Getting to this church is a 3.6 Km diversion from our route tomorrow on the Camino so they have offered to drive us there. The church is very plain. Another route of the Camino passes directly by it. It was built in an octagon shape and there are two outside paths which one should walk one direction, clockwise around one and the other, counterclockwise, around the second before entering the church. I don't know why but Karen said she read that somewhere. Karen's note--i also remember that for one of those two paths one walked barefoot. That would be memorable as those rocks really make an impression on your feet!
After the church we drive to the ancient walled city of Artejona. The last tour of the church and bell tower is underway before we arrive so we miss it, but view a fantastic dungeon with 2 meter thick walls and 20 meter diameter that is in the village. The new village is in the surrounding valley below this conical hill. There is a canal and irrigation for the vineyards and other crops growing in this area. The church here is most interesting--almost like a blockade. But
King for a day
no caption needed
it is the rose window that is so arresting. The sun is shining on the window and it almost looks as if portions of the stained glass are fused gold. We manage to get a peak inside as the tour is ending and the window is breathtaking. It instantly reminds me of one of Matisse's last works, using pieces of colored paper for a pattern, that is in the small chapel on the Rockefeller Estate north of New York City. The colors are breath-taking and the design so pure.
We return to Pamplona. Inigo, ever the romantic, has us back at the ramparts of the wall overlooking the French Gate for sunset!
We return to the apartment and Ines and Inigo prepare a splendid evening dinner, cena. The smail table is covered with great things to eat-all Basque specialties. So with a little wine and water we are full and ready for a great night's sleep.
Call British Air lost baggage group and they have no idea where the bag is now. So we leave the prior instructions to send the bag to Pamplona and call Inigo's cell phone and then we will come pick it up.
Hoping they might get there by tomorrow night.
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