Los Arcos – Logrono
Most of us walking the camino are following some type of guide book. There are different versions with different recommended stops and routes. The majority of us are using A Pilgrim’s Guide To The Camino de Santiago by John Brierley. Each day we can either follow the guidebook or determine if we want to stop sooner or walk ahead. Keeping in consideration the amount of time you have available to complete a camino, if that is your goal.
Albergues (pilgrim hostels) and villages are outlined for easy navigating and are available about every 4 miles or so. According to the guidebook, today’s hike will be one of the longest to date. We all agree to tough it out since Logrono is a larger village with many places to sleep.
Beds can be an issue on the camino, due to its new found popularity. It can be difficult and almost impossible to find a bed in some villages, especially if you arrive in the evening. Reservations can be made, which I learned from Marian, however, you must be able to speak some type of broken Spanish and not all places accept reservations, just the private more expensive albergues.
Onward and upward
Our group feels more focused today, less talking, more walking. We have a reservation for tonight; thankfully getting a bed does not have to be a worry since we will be arriving in the afternoon.
Rachel’s mom decides to take a shuttle to Logrono. Her motherly instinct would prefer Rachel to join her. Even though Rachel’s feet are covered in blisters, she decides to push forward. We all hate to see anyone stop. Giving up is always a thought I am ignoring. The last thing you want is any reason to stop walking.
Blisters and toenails…
We walk from 6am (before the sun rises) until well into the afternoon. Rachel, Peter and I arrive in Logrono and are in desperate need of rest. Peter and I stop at the first chance and purchase an orange pop from a local lady at a stand. I relish in it’s cold fizzy sweetness. This has got to be the best orange pop I have ever had.
Rachel can barely walk due to her blisters and I am mentally and physically beat. Rachel and her mom decide to take a few days off since Rachel’s blisters have now formed into open wounds. We rest most of the afternoon while the others begin to trickle in.
Losing toenails hiking
Laughter and Peter’s loud voice wakes me from my nap. I roll out of bed to visit the group in the lobby laughing and discussing the state of Peter’s toenails. “What is going on?” I ask. “Peter lost some toenails,” Rosemary laughingly responds. “What!” I respond, “Didn’t you notice your feet hurting?” Peter replies, “Yes, but I just thought it was normal.” His feet are bandaged and Peter, as usual, is in good spirits.
Compeed is used when a fresh blister is forming. It protects it from rubbing and creating an open wound, which is prone to infection. It is recommended to change your compeed every couple days or so. When Peter removed his old compeed, along came a couple toenails.
I have heard about losing toenails from hiking, but it is quite different to know someone who has lost some. Losing toenails is due to the feet swelling from hiking long distances. This is why when getting fitted for boots, it is a must to go 1/2 size larger.
It is a funny, but yet a devastating thing to have happen to Peter. I know he will need to stay behind tomorrow and I must push on. Marian, Russ and I are the only ones who are well enough to keep walking. It is a somber and surreal day. We all know our paths must part and the likely hood of ever being on the same path is slim. I must mentally prepare for a bittersweet good bye in the morning.