On the train from Bordeaux to Bayonne, the last leg of our 13+ hours traveling on Tuesday, by pure chance hubby noticed that there was to be a train strike in France the next day which would but pay to our plans of making the last leg of the journey to St Jean Pied de Port. We were able to find out that a bus transfer had been arranged and it would leave at 7:45am the following day.
As we walked from the hotel to the station the next morning, it was amazing to see pilgrims coming from every direction converging on the station, backpacks on their backs with the distinguishing Camino emblem of the scallop shell attached or around their necks. It was quite a sight and a surge of adrenaline…I’m really doing this!
In the station some introductions were made, Italians, Germans, English, South African, Canadian, French, everyone excited to be here and eager for the adventure ahead; When it came to buying bus tickets things got a bit chaotic, the ticket counters were closed (strike) and the ticket machine didn’t appear to want our money, there was a rather frazzled train company agent trying her best to resolve the situation. She spoke French to the Italians standing next to her, a German pilgrim eaves dropping passed that info along in German to those standing nearby and I explained that to the English speakers, it was like international Chinese whispers. As the clock ticked down to departure the train agent finally just directed our little traveling United Nations to the waiting bus empty handed and we got a free bus ride the 80 minutes it took to reach our destination.
St Jean here we come, ready or not!!