Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Camino Interruptus

Hello from Pamplona! Yesterday I took the bus here with some other tired or injured pilgrims. I'd intended to walk but after dinner on day 2 in Zubrizi, I started feeling quite sick, headachy and dizzy and went to bed early. I think the strain of 2 days' walking, being sick, and not sleeping well amongst the snorers and fidgeters took its toll. So, I gave myself a break, bussed here, and found my way to the clinic. I gave my medical information and my passport and waited for the nurse to call me. She did a quick consultation, told me my temperature was normal and sent me back to the waiting room for my turn to be called into one of the consulting rooms with a doctor All this with her speaking Spanish and me speaking badly mangled Spanish mixed with a lot of English.

I waited a few more minutes and then got called and made my way to consultation room 8. A nice young female doctor greeted me as the assistant dropped my paperwork on her desk, saying "Canada", and left. I tried to explain to her what was wrong but could tell she wasn't sure about what I was saying (and as a doctor, you probably don't want to make assumptions or misunderstand). She told me to wait and went out into the hall. I heard her say "Ingles" a couple times. Finally she came back in with another woman who spoke some English and listened to my chest, looked in my ears and down my throat. I came away with 3 prescriptions, duly explained to me, and a note for the alburgue (pilgrim hostel) that I was to rest 2 days. Without the note, you can only stay 1 night in each hostel. I now have a liquid to drink 3x a day, 3 antibiotic tablets to take once a day, and a nose spray to use whenever required. So much for making my pack lighter! But the medicine is making me feel better, so I'm not complaining.

This morning I said goodbye to my fellow pilgrims as they set out. I may or may not see them again as we all continue along our own caminos but I have faith that things are unfolding as they are meant to. I am extremely thankful to have met the people I have so far and am sure I will meet others who have a role to fill in my journey, or I in theirs. It's raining for the first time since I've come to Spain and I am content to rest inside, write, and take only a mental journey for the next couple of days.

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