15 minutes. I missed the bus to Saint Jean Pied de Port by fifteen minutes, so I had to come back the next day and buy a whole new ticket. But the Camino has a way of working itself out.
I was able to get a hold of Adriana, the Europian Volunteer Services participant I met on CouchSurfing, and she came down to rescue me. While I was awaiting her arrival, I met three American gals also on their way to St. Jean Pied. I just looked for more backpacks and approached the first group I found. Turns out they were headed to a hostel that was providing a ride, dinner, breakfast, and another ride to St. Jean in the morning. Unfortunately, the were booked.
But I’m glad things worked out the out the way they did. I got to meet Adriana’s roommates who happen to be Morrocan. They moved to Spain for work. Then I spent the day around the city with Adrianna, Mathilde, and Julio. Julio is part of EVS, but he’s not working the Camino project; instead he’s working with Paris365, an organization that provides multiple services to the people of Pamplona who need help. They help people find jobs, write resumes, and run a soup kitchen. I look forward to writing a full post on their activities later.
While waiting for my bus to arrive, the four of us bought food for a picnic and ate lunch together in the park. Afterward, I did video interviews with them about their projects with EVS. It was neat to hear their stories about what brought them to EVS, and what they hope to accomplish during their time.
At one point, Julio asked me about the tattoo on my left arm. It says, “Trust, Obey, Experience,” and comes from the Experiencing God study I did in high school. As I was explaining how obedience follows trust, and how it differs from rebellion, Mathilde got excited and asked me to repeat myself while she recorded me on her iPhone! That surprised me. I hope I said something encouraging for her.
One thing that was kinda neat was that when I went to buy my bus ticket I was approached my two other Pilgrims who wanted to share a taxi to St. Jean in order to start hiking that day. At first I went to go with them, but then I drew back and explained that I had already committed to doing the interviews with my new EVS friends. As it turns out, this couple ended up on the bus with me, so we got to talking. They are both from California. She is from San Franciso and he is from my old home town, San Luis Obispo! We had some fun stories to share, and I have been hiking along the Camino with them ever since.