A Week in Burgos

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We arrived for a week in Burgos in a bit of state, so to speak. Like many people we had found the Covid years very difficult; uncertainty, fear, and restrictions on socialising all created tensions and anxieties. Then the medical problems started. Somehow, through all these challenges I made a book which was published in July.

Green Lewisham book

Finally we were going to reward ourselves with a holiday abroad. Then, three weeks before we left my back slipped badly out of place. The magical chiropractor helped as much as possible in the time available, I strapped myself into a surgical belt and we set off. The ferry crossing was ghastly – rough, cramped accommodation, poor food – although I really didn’t want to eat!

The road out of Santander was mercifully smooth and after three days of travelling we arrived in Burgos. I had barely eaten for those three days and was in pain. What a start to a ‘holiday’.

Between Santander and Burgos
In the mountains between Santander and Burgos

We found ourselves in a wonderful AirBnB just opposite the cathedral and couldn’t quite believe the view as we looked out of the window.

We picked up a map from the bored man in the tourist office, found a little supermarket and discovered that Sandro’s shop next to our front door had nice wine and wonderful, yellow eggs for breakfast.  The covered market was only ten minutes away.

The days passed and we walked around the old town, exploring churches, side streets, museums and the river. The little boutiques were fascinating, the cafes and bars were always busy, the streets were always clean, and it was warm out.  People congregated in the evenings and pilgrims passed through the town on their long walk across Spain. 

But somehow I felt detached. It didn’t feel ‘real’; I felt as though I was watching myself, a different self, doing all these things. It was like being in a play of life without a part. Perhaps it was because the activities I was seeing were so ‘ordinary’ and relaxed. We had been in Spain three years before, but this was different. It didn’t feel like a ‘holiday’ in the sense of ‘fun and enjoyment’; it felt more like the beginning of a new journey, with a different me, I didn’t feel like the same person anymore. It was almost like learning to see and understand all over again. 

This sounds exaggerated and rather odd, but then I looked at the photographs and they weren’t ‘me’, and they were often detached, not ‘involved’.

At the end of the week I was slowly starting to eat again although I still felt ‘unbalanced’ when I walked. There had been some remarkable sights and the evening ‘concerts’, under the magical sight of the cathedral at night were good. I was nervous about the car journey but at least I was starting to come closer to the reality around me.

2 Responses

  1. wetanddustyroads

    Oh, the lovely Burgos Cathedral – what a view from your AirBnB! While reading about your visit, I remembered how great their wine tastes (and so cheap). I hope your back is better soon … and you’re feeling better overall … there’s food to taste and places to see!

    • Candy Blackham

      Yes, the AirBnB was amazing and the owners very nice and helpful – I would happily return. Burgos was a lovely town to visit in spite of all the restrictions. Back problems continued and investigations are now under way as I am home. As you say, ‘places to see’!

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