May 20, 2019
Bird melodies, sung loudly and enthusiastically, issued from nearly every bush and tree throughout the day. It was Spring, and time to mark territory! Perhaps the sunshine also influenced the celebrations of our feathered companions.
Since I did not recognize any of the numerous songs today, I reckoned the birds were making merry with Spanish birdsong!
I had expected Pamplona, as a big city, to be full of pavement and cars. Instead, Jay and I followed the Camino de Santiago markings through charming green vistas, kilometers of parks!
The tourist map helped clarify the enchanting scenery as we skirted one park, the Citadel. It explained that the 16th century fortifications, moats, and bastions had become a ‘green lung’ for the city, used for sports and cultural events. I wished each city of the world would provide itself with a massive ‘green lung’!
A couple of hours walking brought us to the Iglesia San Andrés in Zariquiegui. We stopped to see this beautiful place.
Back on the Camino, we climbed steadily until suddenly coming upon a fountain, with stone benches and a beautiful design of sunshine rays painstakingly made from small river rocks. Jay read the Legend of Fuente Reniega from his guidebook. According to legend, a pilgrim, after resisting the temptations of the devil, was rewarded with a vision of Santiago himself, who led the pilgrim to this fountain and gave him water using his own scallop shell!
More walking (and climbing!) brought us to the top of a ridge, identified with a sign as part of the El Perdón mountain range. In 1996, after many windmills were installed along the ridge top, a pilgrim sculpture was created, showing 14 life-sized figures crossing the ridge.
This place is known as “where the way of the wind crosses the way of the stars”. Such an imaginative name! A great many beautiful places could be described with this phrase.
After pausing to read signs, take pictures, and enjoy the view, we headed down the other side of the ridge. We walked through the small town of Uterga, then along gravel roads past fields of wheat. Pausing to look back, I could see the windmills on top of the ridge, bringing light and warmth to nearby Pamplona.
Our day ended at a beautiful hostel, El Jardine de Muruzábal.
However, I can’t leave you without sharing some of the beautiful flowers and trees we saw today.