On the last day of our camino, B had to get a taxi at eight in the morning to be sure to make her flight. So we both got up at seven and took her packed bag down to the café across the narrow street for a café con leche and a croissant. How is it that time on the camino flies so much faster than normal everyday time? I still can’t believe the week was over. After saying goodbye to B and arranging for the taxi driver to come back for me later in the afternoon, I found myself awake in Santiago with a good few hours to enjoy the city before going to the airport. So I went for a little walkabout in the unusually quiet streets, got my last stamp from the new pilgrim office and had second breakfast. Pictures say it all.
I like to spend some time on the Obradoiro square just watching pilgrims coming in, and offer to take photographs if someone is on their own and have no friend to take it for them. Also, if you want to take a pic with the whole of the cathedral in the background, it’s best if you are sitting on the floor – so nobody thinks you are stealing their mobile or camera. I met many recently arrived pilgrims and had some good conversations, had a laugh with the man who didn’t believe in suncream and a cry with the one who had lost his wife, gave the lost looking young girl walking alone a much needed hug and provided info on mass times and directions to the post office … B and I had seen and spoken to very few other pilgrims on our six day camino so it was nice to be part of it again. And I bumped into Faith from Pilgrim House, who was preparing for her own camino Inglés that weekend, and we had a nice chat in the sun.
Also, having discovered the delights of the zamburiña shells I managed to find myself a huge portion of them at a place with outside tables where I could people (and pilgrim) watch while I waited for it to be time to get my taxi.
I always miss Santiago even before I leave it and this time was no different. As soon as I get the slightest hint of an excuse I’m going back again … maybe I have to try this new Inglés route … or finish those last 5 kms … yes, doing it again seems like the only sensible option … watch this space – and buen camino!