Thursday, March 22, 2018

In Spain: Last Day in Santiago de Compostela!

Breakfast in our lovely hotel, Hospedería San Martin Pinario.
Over the course of the Camino, I have learned that sometimes the journey can be tough. There are times when your feet feel like they are getting stabbed with a thousand tiny knives and you feel like just giving up. But as you keep going, you realize how strong you can be independently, and how it’s good to reflect upon yourself. Being among all the other pilgrims, whether they’re complete strangers or your closest friends, they become your family in a way. Through hail storms and sunny skies, we all travel the same path, we are all on this journey together. Thus, this forms a special bond, connecting us together in a way that can never be replaced. Even if I don’t speak the same language as the other pilgrims or the people that helped us along the way, they were always there for us, and their kindness will never be forgotten. From long nights, hot chocolate, new places, memories, stormy skies, inside jokes, cold weather, and friends (whether new or old), I will never forget this trip. I have found peace within myself, and I am forever thankful for everyone and everything that came into my life because of this trip.
~Nikki Bires

Our guided tour of the city with affable, encyclopedic
Diego, best guide ever.

The tour continues facing the door of indulgences
for 2021.

In the cathedral and exiting from behind the
altar of St. James
where followers hug his likeness.

Diego continues to enlighten.

Nikki surveys the cathedral square, the Town Hall, and
the Parador, former pilgrim hospital/hostel built
by Isabella and Ferdinand. 
The men gather above the square.
 This trip morphed the scope of my life. Friendships were made with people whom I never would have thought to approach. From these interactions stemmed the entirety of the emotional spectrum. However, when I look back and reflect, all I see is a wave of positivity. This is because each conversation ebbs and flows and moods go from good to bad, but when they conglomerate with solidarity you ultimately find on the trail, your mind processes and learns. Walking the Camino De Santiago is a learning cycle that teaches you a great deal about others, but the most about yourself.
~Max Bjarnason

Inside the cathedral, Diego shows us a massive door
with the life of St. James sculpted on it.
Besides walking along the gorgeous countrysides of northern Spain, I was in utter heaven during the walking tour of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. For those who do not know (other than the group because I'm pretty sure I talked the ears off of everyone about the distinct Romanesque and Baroque qualities), I am an art history nerd. Learning about the history of the architecture as well as facts about the city itself was incredible. Another highlight from this trip was the exquisite coffee. Not only am I an art history addict, but I am also a coffee junkie, so being able to try different coffee along the journey was also heavenly.
~Sam Kadlec

I had the choice to go to St. Lucia with my parents over break, but for some reason decided to go to Spain. Really though, I'm glad that I made the choice to become a pilgrim while making new friends along the way. I'm going to miss the food prices for sure. ~Matt Larson

Sam S. joins the women on the balcony!
This trip will be a lifelong memory in all of our hearts. From the steep climbs and the long hills we will all remember the fun time we had here this year.
~Nick Meggesto

The Camino de Santiago has brought our group of 10 people together as one family. Through our trek of 115 km, we have created bonds that are unbreakable and for that I will be forever grateful.
~Sophia Silis
Diego teaches us about Galician food and class.

This trip has to be one of my favorite things of my time in high school. I was worried about my ability to walk 115 km, but that went away when I realized how amazing the people were that I was walking with. Each person on this trip is a good, honest, fun person, and I wouldn't ask for anyone else to do this pilgrimage with. Now, we are all Familia. I will treasure this week for the rest of my life. I wish I could write something for each person and what makes them awesome, but that would take a very long time. It is really true when people say it's about the journey, not the destination. ~Sam Stevens

Our last dinner at the hotel. ¡Adios, España!

The simplicity of walking washed away the white noise of everyday life, and I was left with myself and nature. The connections I made with my peers and the earth allowed me to become self aware and remember what’s truly important in life. Thank you to everyone who made this unforgettable trip possible!
~Helen Sweeney

No comments: