22 May: Ciruena to Granon


Water, wind and waiting….
It’s been a good day for charity:water discussions and we found a great water fountain.

We’ve been noticing all the irrigation – massive quantities of water are moved around and consequently crops green the landscape.

Then there was the wind……a gusty blustery wind that we had to walk straight into! It blew away any warmth in the sun and dropped the temperature to a number that would be winter for us in NZ! Furthermore, it accompanied us the whole way (not that it was far – we were doing a short distance in order to end up at the parochial albergue in Granon, which we have heard wonderful stories about)
And that brings us to the waiting:

As Tessa said, “We don’t seem to be having much luck with our churches.”
So we have booked in to the other albergue in town and will wait the day away and initially thought we might be able to go to the other one tomorrow BUT it took less than half an hour to walk every street of the town and we are wondering what we are going to do for the rest of the day (it’s only 3pm) and cannot imagine a whole day here! Besides, the cynic in us suspects the sign may have been on the door for longer than just today and that it might still be there tomorrow leaving a long stream of pilgrims thinking they missed out by just a day!

So we’ll spend the evening in a bit of a hippie-ish place with amateur paintings on the walls, joss sticks burning, wine bottle candle holders…..communal dinner at 8pm, which may call for an update later.

destination: Granon
Distance: 16km
Cumulative Distance: 477km
533km to 1,000
Weather: WINDY and COLD (all of us are wearing thermals and some of us are wearing everything we brought!)

Writing a script for a little movie piece filled in some time – more on that tomorrow perhaps.
Mass at 7pm filled in some more time. Not being familiar with Catholic liturgy, very little was understandable. The Lord’s Prayer, the passing of the peace, random words like Father Son table bread wine alleluia sanctification camino and pilgrim caught our attention. But even if we had not understood the call for pilgrims to come forward for a blessing, the old men in the congregation left us in no doubt with their friendly hiss and hand signals to urge us us to the front.
A discussion with a Polish lady filled in time until dinner and then continued over the food (oooh the language skills are rusty after 25 years – although she kindly pointed out we could communicate and that’s the most important….and now we know how to say “to google” in Polish, a word that wasn’t even invented when we were there!)
And what food it was.
Fresh salad, bread, pasta, a most tasty lentil soup and wine were on the table. Rob and the kids were called away and taken down the road to the bakery. After they had sung the national anthem in English and Maori they were presented with baked potatoes straight from the oven, which they carried back up the street, wearing coloured wigs and singing, “Food glorious food…….”
It was not the evening we had planned or hoped for, but it turned out very special nonetheless.


6 thoughts on “22 May: Ciruena to Granon

  1. What a pity for you not to be able to stay in the infamous church tower……HOWEVER …you could try Tosantos tomorrow night. It’s a similar experience to Grañon, maybe the set up is not so attractive, but you get to sleep on mats on the floor again, share a great communal dinner, have the opportunity to be accompanied to visit the church up on the hill carved into the rock face, share a prayer session. All in all, a very positive experience.

  2. Inquiring minds want to know what “Google” is in Polish! Though I suppose if countries don’t retain their names overseas in their native tongues , why would brands?

  3. I must say I have stayed in Granon and it was a very special night- and it was also very very very cold when I was there- in June… However, I wonder if the ‘maintenance’ might be a euphemism for ‘bedbug treatment’ today! The baked potatoes sound delicious.

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