A Travelogue

Friday, December 07, 2007

Day 2, August 26: Roncesvalles to Larrasuana (27 km; 6:45)

It rained heavily overnight and was still drizzling as Janos and I prepared to leave the albergue at twilight. There wasn’t much choice about leaving in the drizzle as the hospitaleros (hostel wardens) had turned the lights on at six and no one was encouraged to linger. As the sun came up, the weather gradually got better and eventually it became quite hot.

The steep 400 metre descent to Zubiri aggravated the pain in my right knee; I was glad I had brought an elastic knee bandage.

Larrasuana is a lovely village with some 200-300 residents. The grand houses that line the main street were built in the 15th and 16th century.

Photo 213: view looking down the main street in Larrasuana

The mayor and his wife run the albergue.

Photo 214: the albergue is located inside City Hall, making it really easy for the Mayor and his wife to keep an eye on the peregrinos

Close by the albergue was the local fronton, (a two-sided building with a roof where the Basque sport of pelota (similar to jai lai) is played. These large concrete courts can be found in almost every village in the Basque provinces of Spain.

Photo 216: The incredibly huge Fronton in Larrasuana, site of the annoying loud, and long, concert that evening

Photo 217: setting up for the aforementioned concert.

Little did we realize that the frontons can also be used for other events, but our ignorance was soon remedied. Shortly after 9:30 pm, when most of us were getting ready to go to sleep, all hell broke loose: the fronton was being used for a rock concert. As usual, the sound system was on the loudest setting. There was no sleep to be had until the concert ended at 11:30 in the evening. Obviously there was no consideration for the peregrinos.

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