Day 8 was a rest/writing-up day. I don't, as a rule, like rest days but I generally succumb more often than I'd like. They break both the rhythm and the tension between landscape and pilgrim/hiker; it's only 24 hours but you still have to get going again after the break. In May 2012, after only three days on the trail, I made an impromptu stopover in Pamplona to see if the 15-M Indignados demonstrations might kick off. They didn't, I should have carried on then, I really should have carried on today but you know what they say about those who ignore history ...
Pilgrim's donkey tethered outside a bar in the outskirts of Pamplona. It's not the first time I've witnessed a beast of burden on the Camino, in 2014, on the Meseta, I encountered a Frenchman who'd walked all the way from Paris with a mule.
Looking north (above) to the Basque mountains and east (below) to Pamplona, whence we'd come on a leisurely Saturday morning
Are you gonna come my way? (It didn't)
Wind turbines on the Alto de Perdón ridge
You get your photo taken at the Alto de Perdón, you pick it up in Puente la Reina the following morning. A nice - and worthy - little earner ...
Virgin secreted in the landscape, one for the Catholic gaze.
Up on the ridge, in the centre, is a hermitage. Below, in the valley, the Camino Aragonese that has crossed the Pyrenees at the Pass of Somport joins the Camino Frances and together they enter Puente la Reina
So far the hike has taken on a much more Catholic aspect than I'd anticipated, it's been much more spiritual ... and ... I think there's a lot of stuff here about the Catholic gaze, the Catholic gaze being more than a visual concept ... being also very much sensual ... the Catholic gaze has to be sensual, involving all the senses. And, perhaps with the bells yesterday ... perhaps that becoming important.
Recorded Saturday 22 July 2016