Camino – Day 40 – Santiago
Well, this has been quite a day! It began in O Pedrouza, which is 20km from Santiago. I started off in the dark and my spirits were surprisingly high. I was smiling and full of energy in a way that had been absent for several days. I felt alive! And that felt really good. It was a damp and drizzly sort of morning, which turned to a light rain in the last hour or so. The path took me through a couple of patches of eucalyptus trees with their peeling bark, up and down over hills, through several small villages with old stone buildings, down lovely country lanes, past the Santiago airport, over a couple of multi-lane highways, through the industrial edge of Santiago, and into the city itself. Once I reached the city it still took 20 minutes or so to reach the Cathedral.
Coming into the plaza in front of the Cathedral was a delightful experience. I’d walked a long way to be there. It was full of wet peregrinos hugging, taking selfies, looking for friends, laughing, singing, crying, smiling. I said this morning I was prepared for it to be festive, and it was.
The Cathedral itself is massive and impressive. The stone work is difficult to describe and beautiful to behold.
I went to the Oficina del Perigrino and got my Compostela, which is an official (fancy) document acknowledging that I walked the Camino.
For the next two nights I’m treating myself to a private room in one of the hotel/albergues. It might be the smallest hotel room I’ve ever stayed in, and it feels absolutely luxurious. Just knowing that I don’t have to check out in the morning, and I don’t have to put my backpack on tomorrow is hard to comprehend.
Tomorrow I will explore Santiago. And then, on Wednesday I will once again put on my backpack and head west to Finisterra and the Atlantic Ocean. It is about 85km, and I plan to take four days to get there. I will spend 2 nights there, and then catch the bus back to Santiago. I will fly home from Madrid on the 25th.
It has been a remarkable journey, and I’m not done yet. But for now I am pausing to rest and reflect.
And, as always, I wish you a Buen Camino, wherever your own journey takes you.
Here is a link to today’s photos – https://photos.app.goo.gl/E6mGmqknyBQWhiLa6