It’s been steady as she goes since León. I’ve been able to pace myself at about 30k/day, and I am learning to enjoy the sights and moments as I encounter them, rather than always trying to create those moments. That sounds so simple, but I think it’s a significant lesson for me. And since it’s been a few days since my last post, I thought I would take a relaxed morning and share some of those moments with you guys.
This is the House of the Gods. It was a stand of free food and drink for pilgrims being manned by Andre from Romania. He had walked the Camino before and it changed his life. He sold all he had and returned and now lives peacefully and happily here, in an old sheep pen, with his girlfriend and the man who started the stand. The donations have been enough to actually purchase the land and structure, and they live to give.
My encounter here was a peaceful one, but it got me thinking about how even those who live off the grace and donations of others are still relying on the system. Even though they try to escape it, they are dependent on it providing for those who offer them aid. In my journey, I hope to be like Paul, content in whatever state I am.
In the movie, The Way, the Cruz de Ferro looks like a very isolated place. The truth is that it’s right along the roadside and has been made into a small park. There is seating, some old building structures, and lots of people. But somehow it still retains it’s significance as people respectfully take turns placing their offerings, taking pictures, and helping each other up and down from the slippery rock mound. I did not carry anything with me to place at the Cruz, and neither did my new Italian friend, Vincenzo. So we sat down and wrote a little something out, then took turns placing our messages on the Cross.
Well, it’s been a late morning stay at the bar across the street from the albergue. The coffee here is good, and they have graciously allowed me to use their internet for blogging. It’s called Albaroque, which is an antique word that describes toasting a business agreement with a drink of wine. I highly recommend stopping in for friendly service! But I must be off before the day gets away from me. I have covered enough ground to be able to relax a little, but I don’t want to loose my free day in Santiago. Yeah, I have pressed on hard enough to actually get into Santiago on the 26th. My train doesn’t leave until the morning of the 28th, so I am looking forward to a day of rest and exploration. My CouchSurfing, EVS friends have welcomed me into their flat for a couple of nights, too, so that will be fun. On we go!