Today we moved north to the Pyrennes, on our way to St. Jean Pied-de-Port, taking the auto-route mostly. (We’ve had several adventures at the toll booths; our American debit and credit cards don’t work in the toll booth slots, and there isn’t always a way to pay with cash. Hale puts on the hazard lights and presses the call button. Someone cheerfully answers and runs over to make change, but it is nerve-wracking when there are people behind you.)
We stopped at both Decathlon and McDonald’s today. Decathlon is the French equivalent of REI. With the non- stop rainy weather, I wanted to get rain pants for the Camino. Back on the autoroute, we stopped at McDonalds for lunch and a shot of coffee, and Internet. Both places were packed with younger people. McDonald’s was sleeker and more high-tech than at home, and the portions were definitely smaller.
For the past ten days we’ve been marveling at the ancientness of everything we see, the layers of centuries and cultures. Perhaps if that’s your daily environment there’s novelty in the fast, sleek, and anonymity of the big bod and fast food experience.