Moonset on the Meseta

Moonset on the Meseta

Monday, August 29, 2011


I am writing this almost one year later.  Eva, Yoko, and I arrived in Santiago on 10/10/10.  I hurried ahead, as I had already walked from Santiago to Monte de Gozo and Sann Marcos.  It seemed to take forever to get to the center of town, past the places I had walked during my stay at the Hotel Arenal for the IBBY conference in September.  I kept meeting pilgrims heading back to the outskirts, compostelas in hand. There was a long queue out the door to the pilgrim office.  I was still wearing my pack as I waited.  Once I had my compostela in hand, I headed to the turismo, and was told what I already knew, that there were no rooms in the city center.  Not only was it 10/10/10, it was a holiday weekend.  As I stood wondering what to do next, a man asked if I needed a room.  I asked him if I could look, and he led me just a few doors up the street to an adequate room with 3 beds and bath down the hall.  I paid him on the spot, and ran back to look for Eva and Yoko, whom I found in line at the pilgrim office.

We celebrated our completion of the Camino that night!  I attended the pilgrim mass, which was overflowing the Cathedral.  It was kind of a let down.

I wanted to hug the saint, but that queue stretched all around the square.  Instead I spent the next day wandering through the city, exploring, and savoring my accomplishment.  After two nights, Eva flew home, and Yoko decided to accompany me on the walk to Finisterre, so we set out once more, pilgrims again, on what was to be quite a long difficult walk, as my various aches and pains were finally catching up with me.  Still, it was a beautiful walk, but 4 days would have been better than three to make the journey.

When I returned alone to Santiago, I did stand in line to hug the Saint, and as I did so, I suddenly was overwhelmed with tears.  I finally felt my pilgrimage had ended.

At least for now...