Travel in a foreign country when you don’t speak the language is humbling. Everyone should do it.
I was humbled this morning several times trying to get the bus from the airport to Burgos. I already had a ticket for the 8:15 am, but because we got in early, I thought I could get into the 7:15am bus and get into Burgos an hour earlier. The 7:15am Bus driver doesn’t speak English and this peregrina never bothered to learn any Spanish. (In fact, I crash learned how to use Google translate on the flight to Madrid.) I am pretty sure the bus driver said, “You dumb American, your ticket is for the 8:15 bus. You can’t just get on this bus.” No, that probably isn’t what he said, but he should have. So instead of being able to say, “Could I just purchase a different ticket for this bus?” I waited for the 8:15. I would still be in Burgos before noon.
I will cut to the chase and tell you, I missed the 8:15 bus too. Not because I was off drinking Cafe con Leche somewhere. Nope, I was right there where the buses come and go. Between chatting with a new found pilgrim friend and not being able to understand the response when I asked, “¿es este el autobús a Burgos?” The 8:15 headed off to Burgos without me too. So, the next bus wasn’t until 10:45. Luckily there were many other people waiting for this same bus and I was finally on my way to my Camino starting point.
Welcome Back to Burgos
I was finally in Burgos by 1:15 which actually was perfect timing for checking into my apartment. After getting settled I headed out to run some errands. First stop was the Correos (post office) to mail my IKEA Frakta Bag to the Correos in Santiago where they will hold it until I pick it up. I think. Again, lack of any ability to communicate in Spanish has tripped me up. Well, hopefully not.
The rest of the day was uneventful. I enjoyed a beer sitting in front of the Cathedral and bumped into Cary (from the bus ride) again.
I got my passport stamped at the Cathedral right next to last year’s final stamp.
Had a delicious tapas dinner.
And I attended the pilgrim mass.
In bed by 9! Looking forward to tomorrow.
Oh Robin, I can so relate to not knowing Spanish. I took 2 years in college, way back in the Dark Ages. Recently I purchased some CDs to listen to in the car. I’m just at the very beginning, but a goal is to know a little bit by the end of next year. Have a great walk tomorrow.
I was starting to wonder if you were ever going to get on that bus!! I sounds like everything turned out just fine, however! The dinner looked great! Now the walking begin!! Sounds great so far! I love you, Mom