Day 7, 2016 - Estella to Villamayor de Monjardin

LAND OF FREE-FLOWING WINE

Fountain with spickets,

one for wine; one for water...

easy choice to make.

I'd heard about BODEGAS IRACHE and it seemed appealing, yet unreal. Was there really a place serving free wine to pilgrims to help them on their way? And, how was it that "free-flowing" meant never ending?

Today was a short walk but which seemed to take a long time. Positioned half way from start to finish, this fountain almost magically appeared. I'm not sure which of the wines was flowing, (this being the Navarre region of wine country with many varieties of red), but it really didn't matter to this amateur wine enthusiast. I'd carried my handy-dandy, retractable, plastic cup for 120k, just for this occasion and proceeded to fill it. Although the wine was free-flowing, pilgrims could read the instruction not to fill any vessel to take with them. The rule was that whatever you "poured" had to be drunk right there. Although I turned the water spicket, I convinced myself the wine better quenched my thirst and after one, well, two cupfuls, the journey continued having had adequate encouragement to press on. Before I knew it, I was eating dinner and in conversation with others learned the value of arriving for free wine earlier in the day rather than later. Some found the spicket dry. I was one of the lucky ones.