A glimpse into the journal I kept for all 38 days on the Camino Frances, including up to 10 photos (not necessarily the best pictures but more that they represent that day in some particular way). Today is day 2 – April 22nd. Orisson to Roncevalles (Pyrenees)

Today was the day that just didn’t want to end. …

Walked again with Robin. It was uphill right from the start and mostly didn’t end. The higher we got, the colder it got – even to the point of seeing my breath. So glad I had the thermals, the gloves, and the Buff. But the views were amazing. The walk was along the road for much of the morning, twisting around various hills. We reached the Virgin Mary statue and took some photos – it was cool in a random marker kind of way. Saw some horses? ponies? and a few posed for photos. Had lunch watching them. Then climbed some more. …

I remember seeing a heart-shaped space in the clouds as they drifted by. Saw lots of slate on the ground and I wanted a piece but didn’t take any as I thought it would break in my bag – later, at the albergue, I found a small piece in my pocket. Weird. Robin called it a Camino miracle. …

We passed Roland’s fountain and I jumped over the invisible border into Spain. The walk took us through a wooded path where leaves covered the ground. Saw a lady in the leaves – first thought she was playing or something but turns out she just fell. After helping her up and being called Camino Angels and a little chat about how the area evoked Lord of the Rings feelings, we continued on. …

We had to traverse snow three times. In one of the mountain huts, we came across a man who had to call 112 (emergency number) as he couldn’t make it anymore. Then we climbed some more. …

Finally reached the Col de Lepoeder (at 1450m/4757ft – SJPdP was at 170m) and started to go down. We missed the road route down so had to go through the beech wood forest….it certainly cured me of liking downhill! It was horribly steep – my knees were shaking! …

Suddenly reached Roncevalles! With a pep in my walk, I made it up the final little hill and promptly went the wrong way to reach the albergue. Eventually found it. …

At 8pm, it was Pilgrim’s Mass. In Spanish so missed most of it. …The service was led by three ancient priests, one of whom looked like he has Parkinson’s and may have fallen asleep on his feet. …