Field Notes: On the Camino de Santiago

Posted: Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Field Notes: On the Camino de Santiago

"Everything comes and goes,

To learn and to grow with love,

In harmony with the Universe"

Quote from the Wall of Wisdom along the Camino

 

Hopefully, by now, all your blisters have gone away, but not all your great memories of the trail. Looking back at the fantastic pictures, the smiles remind me of the new friends we made and the many laughs we shared.

We started our journey by visiting O’Cebreiro, where we collected our shells. We also hiked to the start of Galicia and collected our first stamps. Both were a nice little introduction before our 105-kilometer journey really began in Sarria the next morning.

As soon as we started on the Camino, we entered into the world of medieval hamlets. It wasn’t long before we met a sheepherder with his flock in the middle of the path!  For some of us, it was the first time we had walked among sheep.

We learned about corncribs and marveled at thatched huts that appeared to be straight out of the 1400s. On our first real day of hiking, we were even treated to a torrential wind and rainstorm that nearly blew us away. Luckily, we had rain gear, unlike the original pilgrims who walked the same path hundreds of years ago.

As the week went on, we fell into the habit of first breakfast and second breakfast, lunch, and late dinner (with some snacks in between). We also drank plenty of Aquarius. We tried many pieces of Santiago cake and voted unanimously that the cake by the pink car was the best. Que Rico!

We hiked up hills (including Hildegard) and down hills. We practiced our rest step and used our poles to propel us and make us 30% more efficient going up. We walked silently through the eucalyptus forests and looked for fairies behind the trees. We collected a hug from Walter and listened to the bagpipers in the distance.

We laughed, grumbled (when going uphill), and reflected. By the end, we were stronger, fitter, and happier. We could have walked another 105 kilometers, and some began planning their next journey on the Camino. We celebrated by attending the Pilgrim’s Mass, watching the Botafumeiro, and hugging Saint James. At dinner on our last night, we were joyfully treated to serenading by the “Trout” playing outside our restaurant window.

All too soon, it was time to say goodbye to our new friends until we met again. Anne and I loved sharing the Camino with you. Thank you for joining us, and we hope to see you on another adventure.

Buen Camino!

Sharon and Anne

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