Psalm 121:8 The Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.
Day 8–16.6 Miles, Estella to Los Arcos.
Ah……Truck stops. They are close to my heart ( I can hear my family laughing). There is nothing more special than to eat a Mother’s Day lunch at Flying J Truck Stops. Today ended at a truck stop and the next day will start at the same truck stop. Now for the rest of the story.
We left Estella at about 7:30. The walk was on more level ground today although when entering a village one must always go up a steep hill. If you have not noticed yet, every village has a huge very old church at it’s center. The church is always at the top of a significant hill.
Just outside of Estella there is a fountain. It is the standard Spanish water fountain with very ornate carvings and finishes. This particular fountain not only offers water for the pilgrims but it also has a wine spigot. However, no one was stopping for water. They were stopping for wine.
We walked past numerous grain fields, orchards, vineyards and churches. There was a new flower growing along the path……so much to see and absorb. Tom from New York walked the Camino with us for a short period. We nick named him Brooklyn Tom because of his accent. He is a retired fire fighter.
Across the valley, we could see the light at the end of the tunnel, Los Arcos. The path had been smooth today but we had walked all day. Upon walking into Los Arcos, Google Maps was activated. The streets are hard to follow so the mapping program helps. Google Maps said we had two more miles to walk!. We walked out of town along a highway, away from the Camino path and under the interstate to a Truck Stop! It was hot and we were tired. How could Hotel Villa de los Arcos be a truck stop? It was a truck stop but it was not listed as such on Booking.com. It was clean however and we had our own room with our own bathroom.
One of the employees, Xander, gave us a ride back into town so we could eat. He was the one who informed us the truck stop’s restaurant closed at 5pm. When he heard we had walked over 16 miles from Estella, he offered us a lift. Xander was given cross #12.
Los Arcos like other villages in Spain, has a very old church at its center. The Church of St. Mary of the Arches is home to a black Madonna with blue eyes. A plaque in front of the statue bears the Latin inscription “I am black but beautiful.” After seeing the church, we ate and returned to the truck stop.
We are walking to LaGrono tomorrow. Buen Camino. Sharon and Ron