We were the last ones out of the Albergue, sleeping in to the late hour of 6:30 meant most of the pilgrims would have a 45 minute jump on us - not that it mattered. Today, we were only going to Viana, about 2/3 of a normal day and as of yet, there hasn't really been any competition to get into the dorms. Given the number of people that walk the Camino every year, Janine and I did a back-of-the-envelope calculation and felt there should be about 400 people in each of the major stops at the end of each day - there weren't. Most of the end stops seem to easily support about 200 guests and we questioned if there were even 100 in town on any given night - most Albergues seem half full. Even at the end stages which we had walked seven years ago (the last 100 km which is where 25% of pilgrims start), the competition for beds had been more fierce but it never seemed like the hoards that would be needed if the statistic of 200,000 compostelas (certificates) each year is true.
From Los Arcos, we had another relatively long pre-breakfast walk to Sansol and then on to Torres del Rio with the very small, but very historically significant octagonal church (think Knights of the Templar). Between here and the 11 km to Viana there was little other than the makeshift shrine at the high point in today's trail and a makeshift diner in the middle of nowhere (hats off to industrious Cafe Lusita).
We arrived in Vianna to see a few of the people that we would lose because of the short day. The most notice able was the young Spanish woman who lives in Logrono and had bravely limped through a great deal of the trail so far.
We passed on the chance to sleep in the church annex (on mats with 16 other people) but did go back to Mass and get blessed by the priest. Viana is a sweet little town and we enjoyed exploring it, especially the crumbling ruins of the Iglesia de San Pedro - it was like a church without a top.
No philosophical insights today. It's late. I did a little research on hay versus straw today but nothing yet to report.