I left England in rain and chill this morning and arrived in glorious sunshine and warm weather in St. Jean Pied de Port in the heart of French Basque country. Wild cherry trees with white blossoms are blooming on the mountainsides. I was filled with a profound sense of gratitude that brought tears to my eyes and I tried to hide them from our Formula I caliber driver.
I walked around the medieval part of town and inflicted my terrible French on a very understanding cafe owner and bought some food for the high mountain leg tomorrow known as the Route Napoleon which is finally open and free of snow. My biggest challenge is trying to spend 46 euros worth of coins because I am not carry that extra five pounds on my back.
Tonight I am happy, no, not happy, joyous. I am not sure why but I think it is knowing what a gift I have been given. Today was a wonderful day, and not all Camino days will be like that I am sure. Tomorrow is supposed to be one of the toughest stages. I will try to remember how I felt today because I know true joy is an elusive state of being.