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On the Camino: One Day at a Time, one Photo at a Time 11.0

April 25, 2022 Camino Invierno, A Rua to Quiroga.
The fifth day began with an early morning train ride to Montefurado. Taking the train for the first 10 km of this challenging day reduced the distance to a manageable 19 or so. Right away the path climbed steeply up out of the valley of the Rio Sil.

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The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
A selection of Camino Jewellery
del Norte - July 15, 2019
After approx 2.5 hours from Portugalete, I’m back out to the sea in La Arena. First stop for a well deserved cafe con letche and tortilla. Then off I go, looking back.
😎👣🌻
View attachment 165227
Familiar terrain, when I lived in Portugalete and Sestao over 20 years ago. Thanks for the memory!
 
Just in case I forget to post again soon, here is a cheat second in one day.
This is a detail of the back of a chair in Christchurch in Dublin.
I took advantage of my credential and my intention to walk the Ingles, on my Celtic Camino towards the Ingles Compostela.
Presenting the credential permits free access to the church where you can look with wonder at the floor tiles, and the seatbacks, with beautiful Camino motifs, and absorb the gift of centuries of intention in this marking place on the way to Santiago.

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Day 22 - I have to admit, Leon was the city I was most looking forward to. It's kind of the capital of my spiritual home of Montaña Leonesa. However, if the walk in was ugly then the walk out was even worse. But, you can always find something beautiful if you look in the right place, and this was the view behind me on my way in.
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The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Santiago de Compostela
35 rua del Vilar
Café Casino

photo taken March 22, 2009

Santiago, Cafe Casino,, interior.jpg

Over the years while nursing a drink watching the world go by I have happily sat for hours in the Cafe Casino which has existed since 1873. The old-fashioned decor (upgraded with WiFi) always reminded me of the old Algonquin in NYC when I was much younger.
 
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Santiago de Compostela
plaza de la Azabacheria.
Cathedral, NE corner, Santa Maria Antigua

photo taken December 8, 2012

Santiago,cathedral,NE corner.jpg

I have arrived at the Cathedral as a pilgrim 10 times often via the plaza Azabacheria, named after jet jewelry craftsmen. At this simple northeast corner, not a major entrance, I would put my hand on the ancient stones and weep in thanksgiving.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Day 24 - ok so I know there are conflicting opinions on Cruz de Ferro, but for me this was a massive point of my Camino. It was another place that the Camino dictated I faced alone. Not only did I have my own stone to put down, but also those of others who were no longer on the same side of life. An Australian guy offered to take my photo in return for one of him and his wife. One of the stones I laid down was for my adopted father-in-law who had died of cancer. I swapped stories with the Australian guy. He and his wife were walking the Camino because his wife had recently overcome cancer, we both nodded at each other teary-eyed, aware of the energy that surrounded us. The Camino did these kind of things to me the whole way along.
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A selection of Camino Jewellery
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Day 25 - after giving myself a ridiculous shin-splint on the Cruz de Ferro day and greatly aggravating it on my descent toward Molinaseca it was time for the compression socks purchase at the Decathlon in Ponferrada under the watchful eye of doctor Sepia my Camino shadow (with bonus after application shot) :)
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*edit and also another microfibre towel purchase you might spot, having left my other one at an Albergue several days previous - adapt and survive.
 
Day 25 - after giving myself a ridiculous shin-splint on the Cruz de Ferro day and greatly aggravating it on my descent toward Molinaseca it was time for the compression socks purchase at the Decathlon in Ponferrada under the watchful eye of doctor Sepia my Camino shadow (with bonus after application shot) :)
View attachment 165605View attachment 165606

*edit and also another microfibre towel purchase you might spot, having left my other one at an Albergue several days previous - adapt and survive.
Such a beautiful dog!
 
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Santiago de Compostela
Cathedral interior
alpha-omega disc

photo taken December 9, 2012

alpha-omega disc.jpg


Amongst the multitude of splendor within the cathedral is this handsome disc displaying a four arm cross set with symbols of the sun/moon in the upper quadrants and alpha/omega in the lower quadrants.
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
Day 27 - I know not everyone is a fan of these memorials along the Camino, but I am. I find them touching and a wonderful tribute to the person, that people cared enough not to let them be forgotten. It's also humbling to be on a path that has meant so much to others, and a reminder to never take any day for granted - least not those spent on this magical path.

This particular memorial was just before reaching O Cebreiro (and I'll put the translation underneath for anyone who is interested).
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"Make every second of your existence count!"

Ricardo Bachini Jouglard *23/04/1956 †12/05/2021

Great husband, dear father, loving grandfather, this was your path through our lives! Adventurer, warrior, trailblazer and resilient, he made every second of his existence worth it. May the good times we had together perpetuate and remain here forever, like our love for you! We ask that every second of our existence, whatever yours was, we make it count!

With affection, from your wife and children,

Liz, Márcio, Thiago, Rafael and Laura.

A good journey to all of us!

October/21
 
Santiago de Compostela
cathedral model

December 2012

Santiago Cathedral, model.jpg

This cathedral model was displayed in a 2012 Consorcio de Santtago exhibit detailing aspects of the historic city's urban development. Do check whether such an exhibit may be current while you are in Santiago.
 
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Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
Santiago de Compostelal
plaza de la Quintana
Cathedral, east facade
Puerta Santa/Holy Door

photo taken November 17, 2004

Puerta Santa 2004.JPG

The 17th century Puerta Santa or Holy Door is opened only during a Holy Year, when
St James’ day, the 25th of July, occurs on a Sunday. 2004 was a Holy Year and the doorway was open during my 1st camino.
 
Santiago de Compostela
Cathedral, interior
Puerta Santa /Holy Year door

photo taken December 3, 2011

Holy Year Door, closed .jpg

Since this door is opened/used only during each Holy Year, a year when St James’ day, the 25th of July, occurs on a Sunday. it was not open in 2011 during my 7th camino.
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Looking for something else, this appeared. While I am famously lacking in correct remembering, this strikes me as a true memory of approaching El Acebo. How did I ever manage to walk all those kilometres from Roncesvalles?
I don't hang on to the 'truth' of the myth, but it was a team effort! Together, me, my brain, my feet, and my walking companion, not to mention the source of the Camino... helped me to arrive!
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I always visit this tucked away corner of the Praza das Praterias. Santiago de Compostela. October 6, 2023.

View attachment 165859
I recently saw a picture of this shell on social media and was going to ask anyone here if they had seen it. I’ll definitely look for it next time I’m in Santiago. God willing. Beautiful 😍 Ideated by Domingo de Andrade, the legend tells that she is in charge of holding the entire structure of the Cathedral and that without her it would come down.
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Santiago de Compostela
Cathedral
pilgrim mass

photo taken December 4, 2011

Santiago, cathedral, interior 2011.jpg

Perhaps 15 pilgrims attended; we all stood/sat close to the altar. In the nave were a few other worshipers. A solitary nun sang the service; her voice rose pure and clear.
 
Santiago de Compostela
Praza de Fonseca, 5
Libredon Barbantes hostal

Santiago, Libredon Barbantes, interior .jpgSantiago, Libredon Barbantes, detail .jpg

photos taken December 3, 2011

Glimpsing the towers from the ceiling window or hearing the great bells chime I felt like Quasimodo at Notre Dame!
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
April 29, 2022 Camino Invierno, still day 9
The path into the river valley and out the other side was spectacular and arduous. Fortunately for me the cafe beside the river at Belesar was open and I was able to fortify myself for the climb up to Chantada.

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My daughter taking a break somewhere near Contamine-Sarzin on Via Gebennensis in May 2022. The bench (le Banc du Pèlerin) had been put there in 2016, but the colors of it acted as a very actual reminder to pray for peace in Ukraine.

IMG_4898.jpg
 
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The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
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Santiago de Compostela
Praza da Inmaculada

photo taken December 7, 2014

Praza da Inmaculada.jpg

My 10th and last camino ended as I walked up the timeless hill weary yet thrilled; after 56 days always carrying my full pack I was sincerely thankful to be here again.
 
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Santiago de Compostela
Praza da Quintana

photo taken December 8, 2014

Santiago de Compostela .jpg

Brilliant winter sunshine lit the praza on a cold December day the last morning I was there. ...Whatever one believes, however one sees this world, it is impossible not to be touched and moved in this city ...May it always be so.
 
Camino Finisterre
photo taken December 5, 2011

Lugar Ponte Sarela.jpg

Starting towards Finisterre in 2011 after crossing the tiny pedestrian bridge over the Sarela river at Ponte Sarela a narrow dirt path began at this rather ad hoc gate.

gate, Ponte Sarela.jpg
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
CF - September 22, 2013
After Sahagun I went right, down the old Roman Road. Ouch 😣 Ahead, a lovely village awaits with a tiny tienda that had everything a pilgrim could want/need and more. Near by restaurant, I had a fabulous dinner of eggs and bacon with some Aussies. Funny how these things remain etched in our memory.
😎👣🌻

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Santiago%202013%201st%20SIM%20Card%20236.jpeg
 
Last edited:
Camino Finisterre
Vilaserio

December 6, 2011

Vilaserio stamp 2011.jpg

After walking through unceasing cold rain I stayed at the newly built private Albergue O Rueiro run by the only open bar/resto in December. Hot water and many blankets were offered but no heat as yet! Nevertheless as the only pilgrim wearing my wooly hat and winter tenue de soirée/evening attire I slept chilled but not frozen for 15 hours!
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
New Original Camino Gear Designed Especially with The Modern Peregrino In Mind!
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Camino Finisterre
towards Cée
rio Hospital

photo taken December 8, 2011

leaving Hospital.jpg

A footbridge crossed the rio Hospital; looking at the cold river water I was glad that the bridge was sturdy and new! The river and nearby hamlet are named for a pilgrim hostel, which probably had existed.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Camino Finisterre/Muxia
towards Cée

photo taken December 8, 2011

Petroglyph, map.jpg

The routes to Muxia and Finisterre split at the juncture DP 3404/ DP 2302. On the right is DP 3404 to Muxia; on the left DP 2302 towards Finisterre.

Petroglyphs.jpg

Hidden in the wood on a dirt path off DP 2302 this giant rock with petroglyphs seemed magical and a bit threatening as if it might erupt.
 
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Camino Finistere
towards Cée

photo taken December 8, 2011

above Cee, the sea.jpg

From a hilltop near Cée could be glimpsed the silvery Atlantic ocean and Finisterra in the far distance. What excitement medieval pilgrims must have felt when they first saw that sea!
 
Ideal pocket guides for during & after your Camino. Each weighs only 1.4 oz (40g)!

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