Viana then LogroñoPosted on June 20, 2010 with 4 comments
Took the bus to Viana and got there at ten only to discover that the alberque would not be open until 12:00. Ended up in a corner of the city wall out of the wind and rain for two hours.
Viana would be a cool place in the sun, it is truly a medieval walled city with walls over two meters thick and gates that still open and close. In fierce wind and rain it is definitely not so fun. Because the trail to Logroño is dirt (mud) so...I took the bus on to Logroño and was preparing myself to wait outside another alberque again.
Went to the Church of Santiago and a lady was coming out of the building next to the church who looked at me and said "So you're the harpist! We take pilgrims here and the priest has heard of you. He'll be so sorry to have missed you as he just left for vacation but consider yourself welcome!"
Is that great or what?
I didn’t get a chance to talk to the interim priest to ask if I could play there, but as I had wandered into what is called a donativo which is run by the parish for pilgrims they were all asking me about playing for their pilgrim prayer service. (A donativo is where you pay what you can and not only a bed is provided but a meal as well.)
So we shared a communal meal and afterwards (this was at nine at night) we pilgrims filed down this secret passageway to the church which led out into the choir area. The church was vast and all in darkness except for a few candles on the altar way over across the nave. Only our little bit of the choir was lit and there was this sense of great space and dark beyond.
There were fourteen of us and after the short multilingual prayer service, I played. The music once again filled the church and it was so intimate in our little circle of light.
Another magic moment on the Camino.