Day 31 - Santiago de Compostela

Boy the time we had breakfast and washed the clothes, it was noon. We wanted to visit the church of San Francisco.  Up the hill we went.  When we arrived I saw a priest so I went to ask him for a sello, a stamp for my pilgrim's credential.  Not only he gave us e stamp but he also gave us a blessing certificate. Then we went to have a moment of prayer and found that a mass was starting. Nice way to start the day. After Mass we had a light lunch and we went to the cathedral museum.  They have a new section where the restoration of the cathedral is explained.  Very interesting and a lot more complicated than I thought.  There is course a great collection of religious art including a XVII century painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  Seeing her always touches me, specially when we are far from her. After a rest we went back to the cathedral for Sunday mass.  Our last visit on this trip to the house of our patron saint Santiago.  Again, a very special mass at this shrine. Hard to bel

Day 30 - To Santiago de Compostela

With some reluctance we took the bus to Santiago.  It took just over an hour what could have taken us several days on foot. I guess at some point we have to accept that the body has its limits and we do only what we can. The bus terminal in Santiago de Compostela is about 1.5 km from the cathedral.  Beeing Galicia there hills every where.  Wonder Woman did not want me to walk with the backpack worried that I might hurt myself again but I insisted.  Missing the last 80 I'm, I wanted to walk at least the last one. We arrived in front of the Cathedral in 20 minutes and our emotions resurfaced.  Backpacks are not allowed in the cathedral anymore, so we went to our Pousada to leave them and came back. The number of pilgrims has increased dramatically over the last few years (and keeps growing), so now they have security, you can only enter thru one door and exit on another. We managed to get in, we had our moment of prayer, we took the stairs behind the altar to hug the statue of t

Day 29 - Pontevedra

I'm finally out of bed.  The pain is almost gone. I can walk!!! We went out for a typical Spanish breakfast; a croissant and infusion (herbal tea).  Then we walked to the bus terminal, about one and a half kilometres.  We wanted to check on the schedule of buses to Santiago de Compostela for tomorrow. The plan is to go tomorrow to Santiago, on Sunday travel to Barcelos, and on Thursday to Porto so we can take our early flight home on Friday.  No more walking long distance with backpack.  Really, a vacation. Of course we have given up on trying to get the Compostela, the pilgrim certificate.  We do have our pilgrim's credential with the stamps from all the places we visited. And we know that even if we did not walk the last 100 kilometres, we are real pilgrims (we did walk over 300 km). Now, in a few minutes we will go to Mass to the church of Our Lady Peregrina.  We will ask for her protection and help. And we will be able to pray for each of our family and friends at the

Day 28 - Pontevedra

I guess this is the end of the blog.  From Redondela we took a taxi to Arcade and stayed there only one night.  Arcade is smaller town with few facilities and everything was far from the hotel.  I was not getting better either.  The next stage was to Pontevedra, the head of the district and.much larger.  So another taxi to Pontevedra, and a much better hotel. We have been here two days, still having trouble moving but improving slowly.  I don't think I will be able to walk very far soon.  We have decided to end the pilgrimage right here.  To get the Compostela we would have to go back to Redondela and walk 80 I'm.  It is not going to happen. I read that only 1 in 5 pilgrims complete the pilgrimage.  We were lucky enough to complete 3 before this one.  We are blessed in having the opportunity to try. I also have learned once more to appreciate Wonder Woman.  She is proving once more that I couldn't have a better wife.  She has spent the last few days taking care of me wit

Day 25 - Redondela

Walked today: 2.5 km No of steps: 3289 steps Total walked: 343.0 km Another day out of circulation.  I got a muscle relaxant for my sore neck a ND it knocks me out.  I have been sleeping for two days. Yesterday I only went out for food and today only for Mass and food. We have decided to try to walk tomorrow.  Still very sore so  we'll see what happens.  At least the weather is very nice now. That's all for today.

Day 23 - Redondela

Walked today: 8.7 km No of steps: 11,108 steps Total walked: 335.7 km Not much happened today. My heel blister is huge so Brenda wanted to make sure it was looked at. We walked across the town to the health centre but they wouldn't look at it because we don't have European health insurance. At the private clinic there was not even a nurse.  Finally at the pharmacy, one of the pharmacists took care of it.  She drained it, applied antibiotic ointment, told me to come back in the afternoon, cleaned it again with alcohol and then put compeed and a heel protector. My neck is also very sore, so we'll see how I do tomorrow. I The rest of the day I was in bed feeling sorry for myself. To end the day, we went to Mass to the church of Santiago.  Praying for his protection.

Day 22 - To Redondela

Walked today: 20.0 km No of steps: 25,793 steps Total walked: 327.0 km Started at dawn, shortly before 9 am. Foggy from the beginning, then drizzle and by 11am rain. Not much to say today.  I have a very uncomfortable pain in my neck that made the day hard for me.  The stage has a very steep climb and a very steep down hill.  Both hard going up and the way down hard on my knee.  Wonder Woman as usual being wonderful and caring for me with all the patience of the world. We saw a few pilgrims, we talked and walked for an hour or two with Bruno from Switzerland.  He is also an old guy and he says el Caminho was in his bucket list.  When we arrived to the outskirts of Redondela, Brenda said we needed to find a bathroom.  I know that walking into town can take over an hour so when I saw a man going into his house I asked him if she could use his bathroom.  He right away said yes.  Spaniards are always so nice to us.  Nice man with a nice modern home and beautiful children. We walke