Guide Chapter 2 of Rooster in the Cathedral: Reflections of a Pilgrim While Walking to Santiago

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You and your girls are excellent and inspirational role models for our sex. You and your wonderful girls are role models for our sex. I loved the frankness of your interesting blog. Very well done. Thanks for your comments, everyone! I'm glad you enjoyed this blog. Marcy, this is a late answer -- forgive me! The three courses were usually as follows: 1 a choice of mixed salad, pasta, soup, or a couple other starter dishes; 2 entree, which was pork, chicken, beef, or some other meaty dish; 3 dessert, which was usually rice pudding, flan, ice cream, torte de Santiago specialty cake , or another kind of cake.

All the servings were massive and delicious. Post a Comment. Who Are We? The Way of St. Two New Hampshire girls hike the mile Camino de Santiago to raise money for women around the world. Comments Part One. April 22, First, a few scenes from Santiago, today and yesterday April 21 and 22, This post is a continuation of our report from our arrival in Santiago yesterday, April 21; more photos can be found in that post and, probably, in tomorrow's post we have one more day in Santiago before we start walking to Finisterre.

Inside the Cathedral, the Tree of Jesse. Millions of pilgrims have worn finger holes into the carvings over the past nine hundred years. Terrain - most of the time, the Camino feels like a gravel driveway and it rarely gets steep. In that sense, the Camino feels easy.

It was a really good day, despite all those niggling resentments towards the new pilgrims on the road. The best day of walking yet! For the first time nothing hurts. No blisters, no sore muscles. About 25 km today, and it seemed that the last 5 were not much harder than the first 5. We walked through a lot of farmland, straight through the middle of small farms — which means we walked through and around a great deal of cow dung.

The funniest moment of our day, though, was probably when we walked between two roosters who were calling back and forth to each other. The day began with fog, but later a mix of sun, clouds, some warmth, some cool winds. No rain, no complaints. Around pm our host or hostess? The piano sounded as you might expect out of tune , but the music was free-flowing improvisation, akin to music by Philip Glass.

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I should have gotten up to investigate, but I just laid in my half-sleep and enjoyed it. A low point was peeking into a tiny boarded up chapel and seeing a small altar and ancient baptismal font, both covered with graffiti, as were the walls. Not anti-religious graffiti, which might seem to have a point, but just silly stuff with names and dates. And who throws their cookie packages and drink cartons on the ground while walking in some of the of the most beautiful countryside imaginable?

I decreed that litterers should be hung, but my more reasonable son thought that was a bit harsh. People who have walked from their homes in Germany or Holland or France look down on those who began in St. Those who began at St. Jean feel superior to those who start in Burgos. Those who carry their packs mine is 19 pounds judge as somewhat lesser pilgrims those who pay for a service to take their pack from place to place.

And everyone seems to look down on those who only walk the final km which is what many church youth groups do.

Camino de Santiago and Finisterre – Documentary Film

And here I am in judgment of litterers, so I decided to litter and become a sinner too. I took a used tissue and tucked it into a plant along the way. I hope no one can actually see it, and it will soon disintegrate, but I felt bad about this for several kilometers. We stopped for a real breakfast at the Arroyo Vineyard on our way out of town.

Everything is so much fresher here. Eggs with golden orange yolks, and bacon that has never known nitrates, freshly squeezed orange juice. We spent most of the day walking along the Rio Valcarce, and are staying in an albergue in Vega de Valcarce. An easy, comfortable day of walking was followed the next day by an intensive day of entirely uphill walking.


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We traveled perhaps 24 km, and every step was hard-earned. Early in the day we passed a small stable where three horses were being groomed. One of the cowboys, surely the original Marlboro Man, asked in Spanish, then in English, if we wanted a ride to Cebreiro.

I laughed, wanting to say yes, but landing on no. After hours of climbing I realized that I would have been feeling very sorry for any horse that carried me up those steep, rocky, muddy paths but six years later, I still regret not accepting a horseback ride next to an impossibly handsome vaquero! This is the day that we finally enter into Galicia, a distinctive region with its own dialect and a strong Celtic influence.

I am eager to hear the local form of bagpipes. The views may have been incredible, but we were not to find out. We stopped for an early lunch at a charmingly rustic and very old place — an old barn turned restaurant?

The Camino Finisterre: Walking to the End of the World

We asked for soup and were served the traditional Galician soup of white beans, greens, and potatoes…. Grimacingly awful. We were grossly over-charged, but enjoyed an hour of escape from the cold fog and some rest, before continuing the climb. A comfortable sitting room for reading, and for many, a chance to watch the French Open finals.

Nidal in three straight sets, so not a particularly exciting match, but a happy experience for my son and the other pilgrims who joined in watching with him.

We met a talkative young Slovenian man who was happy to tell us about his country when asked. There were perhaps thirty of us at the long dinner table tonight. Galician soup again, but much, much better this time. Very primitive in every way. And I was tempted, I admit, but my son was not swayed by this version of the devil, and we walked away, knowing that the next town was 8 km away. I knew I would be slow and told him to go ahead without me.

This turned out to be the longest and loneliest two hours of my life on a difficult, stony path, which steeply descended for the last several kilometers.

The Portuguese Road to Santiago

As I shuffled — and there is no other word to describe my gait — into town, the first face I saw was that of my son, and he had found us a place to stay — with running water! There was no prayer meeting. Out little group of five around a dinner of salad and lentil soup was comprised of a sweet, young Hungarian couple, a Filipino living in London, a Polish-Canadian, and us. The next day, we stopped at Cacobelos Municipal Albergue which is built around a church in a rather unusual design, with little individual cubicles, and a large shared yard where people were hand-washing their clothes in tubs.

The driver turned out to be part of this enterprise, coming in to play guitar and sing for us. Ah, and the wine, as it is throughout this country of vineyards, is more than drinkable! Our table of Canadians and us was quiet, but appreciative. This was a 30 km day and my legs and feet are aching, but the walking and views today were beautiful.

Estella to Santo Domingo de la Calzado

The cool, damp climate supports a variety of vegetation that we can only dream about in D. Masses of poppies, lavender, and daisies grow as wildflowers. Wild roses on the edge of the woods and massive cultivated roses in nearly every yard. In one garden I saw blooming irises, roses, and azaleas — which would never bloom at the same time in my garden.

Petunias, pansies, geraniums…but flowers are really the least of these gardens. Everyone grows vegetables and fruit trees — in their front yards, in a narrow strip next to their homes, in a huge community garden next to the village. Gardening is in their bones. Those are ripe now and sold everywhere, and so yummy. And grape vines. There is such a wonderful sense of abundance.

And sometimes abundance is defined as too many empty and decaying homes. It is clear that the economy is currently as terrible as the news tells us, but there is no poverty of the spirit as far as I can tell. Is that too cynical of me? I especially agree with this last one.

How many times have I walked in my own city and seen things I had passed by for years and never noticed from the car? Buen camino! Share this: Twitter Facebook Email Print. Like this: Like Loading Let go!