I have breakfast at the albergue then leave my pack there for a while. I chat a bit with Luisa, a German girl from Berlin, staying at the albergue, who is going to Muxia, and decide to walk with her to the starting point of her hike. It is not very clear where that is so we ask in Spanish at the supermarket. It turns out the woman giving us instructions in Spanish could actually speak German, as she had lived in Germany for some time. She tells us that the trail starts a kilometer or so out of town on a left hand side street going uphill and just right before a gasoline station. After a few minutes we are there. At the corner is the Asador San Roque and a sign on the road to San Martiño. We part ways here and I wish Luisa a Buen Camino.
Afterwards, I walk to the bus station just a little way from my albergue. Today is the first day I will ride a motorized vehicle in 35 days. I have walked everyday with my boots and backpack for a little more than a month now.
A bus arrives from Santiago and I spot Bogdan, a Polish guy we had met at El Burgo Ranero. My Polish has not gotten any better, nor has his English -- I am happy to see him and we say our hellos and goodbyes.
The bus stop is full of other pilgrims waiting for the first bus back to Santiago de Compostela. It leaves at 8:45 am and is a comfortable modern doubledecker. The 3 hour trip costs 13 euros. I sit on the upper level on the front row to get a good view. The road is very scenic but long and winding and soon enough I am feeling a bit dizzy and car sick. I had left my motion sickness pills at home and I am hoping I don't throw up. After 3 long excruciating hours, we are in Santiago. I get off at the train station and walk towards the city center, stopping along the way to have lunch at a local restaurant.
I check in at the Hospederia Seminario Mayor where I stayed before -- this time in a single room for 25 euros. After a shower, I head out and walk around. I go to the Museo des Peregrinos-- quite nice, then I buy some souvenirs.
While walking around, I spot a few people I know sitting at a sidewalk cafe. There is Holly and Lee, Ana, Maria with some other pilgrims Edward and Yoshi. I join them for dinner at Casa Manolo. Later, we walk to the Catedral plaza and see other pilgrims I had also encountered before-- Joe, Josef, Charlotte, Helen and some others I meet just now like Stefano and Lorena. We are now a big group of about 10 people. We chat a bit in the plaza in front of the Basilica. It starts getting a bit cold and we decide to move to the courtyard of the Hospederia Seminaria Mayor. Joe gets some wine for the group. We all sit together and chat till almost midnight. The group stays on but it is time to sleep for me as I have a flight tomorrow. I say my goodbyes.
It is great to see the people -- pilgrim friends you have shared the Way with -- at the end of your journey. Soon enough we need to go our separate ways and venture off on our own separate Caminos.
|Sunrise backlights Finisterre cruzeiro|
|Finisterre town center|
|On the bus, Finisterre to Santiago de Compostela|
|Musician in Santiago de Compostela|
|Statue of Saint James at the Museo des Peregrinos|
|Another version of St James|
|Pilgrim cape and hat|
|Typical pilgrim wear of past times|
|Plaza de Obradairo fronting the Basilica|
|The Basilica at night|