San Juan de Ortega to Burgos (Camino de Santiago)

We had already been walking for an hour when we were given the gift of a sunrise that was magnificent. We passed through an oak and pine forest with trunks covered in layers of moss that hung thick and wet. I stopped at one point and took a photo with my old Rollei camera of the rising sun, fog and heavy morning dew that dripped from the grass, a serene filling moment. The road continued and slowly cows began to appear out of the mist. The sky lightened and the sun illuminated a village below in a lush valley. We dropped down then back steeply up reaching another stoic cross marking the top of a hill. From there we could look down onto the sprawling city of Burgos. It took a couple of hours to pass through  the outskirts and actually get to the city center. At one point the trail split and we took the route that led us around the airport, past the city landfill and an area of abandoned graffiti covered buildings, the worst section of walking on the whole Camino. We arrived in front of a small alberque before its opening. A line had formed and we were lucky to be one of the sixteen guests at the Alberque Divina Pastora.  The second floor room with eight bunk beds was operated by the church on the first floor which simply requested a donation for payment. We had been told about this alberque by another pilgrim a few days before and all of us were grateful. Journal: “Thoughts filled me most of the day as I walked the sixteen miles to Burgos. I am thankful for Beck and Hillary and the love I have for them. I will keep the people who have died recently alive by remembering them through fond memories. I will simplify my life, or will try. I will nurture friendships and not let them slip away like I have done so many times.”