I slept a great 8 hours. I got up once to wander out to the bathroom in the hall and could hear a super loud snorer. Once back in my room I could still hear him, I think that is what the albergues will be like but they’ll be in the same room.
I wandered around Bayonne in the morning ( a cute French town) before heading to the train station. While sitting on the platform waiting a young woman sat next to me. She was reading a camino guide. I asked her when she was starting to walk and she said today. My first camino conversation!! Her name is Mariel and she is a British doctor ( a GP ). She had blocked 6 weeks out of her dairy (calendar) to do the camino. She is very well traveled. We road the train together to St. Jean then sat in the park and had sandwiches. She said she had been trying to get her application in order so she could go to Australia to practice but the process was so cumbersome that she switched to South Africa and was headed there in a few months. It reminders of what John had said about trying to get licensed in Australia. After lunch she headed off to start the camino, I stayed behind resting since I can’t check into my albergue until 3:00. We parted with a Buen Camino. I walked along the ramparts of the old city with great views into the Pyrenees where I will walk tomorrow.
I went to my albergue to get checked in. It’s a small place for 20 I’m in a room with two Hungarians, Laszlo and Gabor.
In the evening all 20 people gathered for a dinner/welcome. After introductions and an aperitif We had an excellent dinner of white bean soup, salad, boiled eggs, stuffed tomatoes and rice with wine and dessert. It was lots of fun. There were people from France, USA, South Africa, Singapore, Holland and Hungry.
In the morning I walk!!