Cloister in Los Arcos on the Camino de Santiago

Cloister in Los Arcos on the Camino de Santiago

Monday, May 30, 2011

Rest day in Pamplona - Day Six

Day Six – May 21st – Rest day in Pamplona – some rest!

Distance travelled 5km, Pints consumed, unknown.

Saturday was planned to be our rest day. It also coincided with an important rugby match – the final of the Heineken Cup between Leinster and Northampton in Cardiff.

The first big decision of the day – where to have morning coffee? – was solved by Pat who discovered a favorite haunt of Hemmingway on the Plaza del Castillo. The surroundings were opulent, yet the price was meager. We may all have yet to emigrate to Spain if things get really rough…

The students were in the square outside celebrating their day/week of protest. It was all good humored and typically Spanish. People gave speeches, wrote slogans and most importantly escaped occasionally for food and drink. Even an army of protestors marches on its stomach.

The heat and the absence of alcohol took their toll on me and so I had to spend much of the afternoon and evening close to the hotel for logistical reasons while the others forgot all about me and had the times of their lives. However I did manage to glean some valuable info – see below -

I copied all the Mass Times in Pamplona – so no excuse for being late. In the course of the day I got to attend no less than four Masses (an all time record; perhaps to equal Barcelona/Man U?). First there was a morning High Society wedding in the Cathedral. Normally there is a cover charge but we must have appeared invited but unlikely wedding guests. In the mid afternoon we visited the lovely church of St Nicholas where a first communion ceremony was in full flight and noisy children kept their well dressed but despairing parents busy. Towards the end of the day I attended yet another (evening )wedding in the Church of San Lorenzo beside the hotel and finally a regular Saturday vigil Mass in the Church of Santo Domingo where no more than 7 or 8 parishioners were in attendance – maybe like me they were exhausted.

The other less prayerful pilgrims meanwhile were on an exhaustive trawl of the tapas bars. Daniel briefly escaped to watch the rugby match on some pirate TV channel. Leinster who were out of the match at half time – trailing 22-6 – came back in the second half to win it – due in no small amount to my prayers. I reckon God may have been exhausted too.

Dinner for some of us consisted of a toasted cheese sandwich in the lovely Parque de Talconera across the road from the hotel. Pretending I was still a pilgrim in Orisson I took to bed at 10.00 only to be woken by a text from a well meaning friend at midnight to give me – the news – that Leinster had won. Unable to sleep and unwilling to put the sound on the TV, I watched Ronaldo’s recent record of scoring 40 goals in a season at least 40 times.

View across the suburbs of the city from the Hotel Eslava

No comments:

Post a Comment