September 8, 2002

9/8/02 Toulouse France

Train ride to France

Spent the morning waiting to go. I just hate to travel. To me, perfect travel would to just be to walk out your door and keep walking. No tickets, nothing to be late for.

While I nervously waited for Amparo to pick me up, José told me that they were taking Javier to the hospital in Burgos. The little guy still is having diarrhea and stomach problems and it's been ten days. There isn't a pediatrician here, so they'll make the drive to Burgos, the nearest hospital. Javier is still his fun, active self, but you can begin to see the weight loss. My prayers are with him and his family.

Nati, Javier & José

Just like my arrival in Spain a month ago, the skies are cloudy and overcast as I say goodbye to everyone at the train station in Burgos. I promised Amparo that I would practice my Spanish as often as I could on my pilgrimage I'm more than a little sad to leave my new adopted family and friends.

It's hard to describe the train trip through Spain. I just hadn't realized how mountainous it is here. At first we moved through valleys of cut wheat and sunflowers ready for harvest. But always, the mountains loomed overhead. But as we neared the northern coast of Spain, I couldn't count all the tunnels we went through or see much of the river gorges below. I knew we were near the ocean once we reached San Sebastian.

Just over the border, into France, I changed trains in Hendaya. Now it's raining as evening approaches. I have four more hours to Toulouse in a sleeper car, though I doubt I'll get much sleep. At least I won't go hungry. Before I left Hacinas, Nati loaded me up with three large sandwiches, tow fruit juice containers, one apple and a bag of chips. I felt silly carrying such a large lunch bag but it sure tasted good.