Monday, 27 July 2009

The Magic of the Camino: Literally...!

Friday July 17th: The Albergue in Redondela is in an old building called the Casa del Torre. I notice that there is entertainment that night right literally on the doorstep at 11:00. Yes, says the lady who stamps my credentials, but you can't go. Que? "The doors close at 10:00 and you can't go out after that," she tells me.

Never mind, I am still having a lot of trouble with the feet.

The Casa del Torre has a wonderful library with lots of fat books on Compostela things and I grab a whole bunch, put my feet up and spend a happy afternoon struggling with the Castellano. By the time I venture out for something to eat, the refugio has filled up with slim bike riders in slim bike rider outfits and as far as I can see, no packs of any kind. It seems they have a "Coche de Apoyo". I play a complicated game of cards with two Polish women and Mikael their son in which I seem to win but don't have the vaguest idea what I am doing.

The lights are out. But there is a balcony overlooking the stage and my bed is close to it. It is a magic show and I am right behind the stage. I have a wonderful view and am nice and legal inside. I am joined by only one other woman and even she doesn't stay. All the rest are good compliant pilgrims snoring their heads off and all have gone by the time I get up at 7:30 the next day.

I don't get this. Just because the Camino goes in a certain direction and certain writers have suggested stages between refuges doesn't mean that this is all we can do when on the Camino. Or am I dead wrong here? This to me was a chance to share a cultural event (even from the obscurity of the Albergue's balcony), but not one other person chose to do it.

Must just be me. It usually is.

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