What a great city. Arrived here by train, missed a few days walking with that mishap so had to make up the time by getting the train out here. Feel like a bit of a cheat, but the walk back was fairly arduous so am not feeling so guilty. I still have roughly 600kms to go and feeling great now, everything has settled & ready to hit the road again tomorrow. Absolutely love, love, love Burgos. This place has got to be the most beautiful city in Europe, craps all over Paris I reckon. The Gothic architecture is amazing, absolutely awe inspiring. Just walking around the squares is enough, without having to go to the cathedral. Couldn't resist the UNESCO listed cathedral though & got a discount for being a 'peregrino' half price which was nice. Could spend a year in there. Bloody amazing. Am definitely coming back here again sometime as can't fit it all in today, there is just so much to see. Being a Monday, the 2 places I really wanted to see are closed - the museo de la evolution Humana (where the oldest human remains found in Europe are kept) and the Monasterio de las Hueglas - home of the Gregorian chanting monks, so I definitely have to get back here, sometime and somehow. I think I need a good two weeks just in Burgos.
Am looking forward to moving forward again tomorrow, these Tapas bars are killing me, I feel like I've gained about 20 kilos in the past couple of days. The food is just sooo good, and so is the wine (strange considering I'm not really a wine connoisseur). Bit hard getting used to eating standing up and around the bar or a wine barrel though, probably a good thing because I wouldn't stop eating if I got too comfortable.
My Spanish is getting better but still pretty crap. People are good though, they seem to be understanding, except for the post office. WTF is it with postal workers all the world over - they are just so friggin rude. Unfortunately I've had to deal with them here & elsewhere in Europe on another trip & I swear to God they are all the same, even in Aus (although there's 2 ladies who work at One close to work that are alright, but the other one in there is a mega b****) Why? Is it because the mail just keeps coming, and coming or what? Can't figure it out. Unfortunately they are a necessary evil because I can't lug all my crap around and so am sending souvenirs & excess stuff home. I hope they arrive!!!
Burgos is just so fascinating it is blowing my mind. It was the seat of Franco's Government up until about 1938 (i think) and apparently still has nationalist leanings. The town is actually named after its heavy defensive towers (Burgos) and was home to the hero/warlord (depending on who you speak to) El CID. I would love to learn more, to speak to some of the oldies about what life was like back then under Franco, because of course we only hear the terrible stuff, how he was a dictator and had so many people killed. I remember seeing machine gun holes in the walls in the Gothic Quarter in Barcelona a few years ago, and being told that this is where dissenters where shot during the civil war. I stupidly thought this was hundreds of years ago, imagine my surprise when I found out it was in Franco's time, not so long ago at all really. Of course, even if I could speak Spanish better I would never be so insensitive to bring this up in conversation, but I am just so curious. People living under a regime fill me with intrigue, which is perhaps why Russia, Cuba, Iran & DPRK fascinate me so much. I AM going to get there one day, if it's the last thing I do
Song of the day: viva la vida : Coldplay
Dedicated to my eldest hermano (bro) his wife (my sis in law) & my eldest el sobrino after whom this Camino (the way of St James) was named (he wishes, sorry mate, you're a great kid but this was around way before you were even thought of). I haven't been the best sis but I love you all, we are family, & Im realising just how important you all are to me. Despite the fact that I am so hard to contact, rest assured I'll make more of an effort to rectify that from now on