O you who’ve gone on pilgrimage –
where are you, where, oh where?
Here, here is the Beloved!
Oh come now, come, oh come!
Your friend, he is your neighbor,
he is next to your wall –
You, erring in the desert –
what air of love is this?
If you’d see the Beloved’s
form without any form –
You are the house, the master,
You are the Kaaba, you! . . .
Where is a bunch of roses,
if you would be this garden?
Where, one soul’s pearly essence
when you’re the Sea of God?
That’s true – and yet your troubles
may turn to treasures rich –
How sad that you yourself veil
the treasure that is yours!
-Rumi ‘I Am Wind, You are Fire’
Today I had an absolutely lovely day! I woke up feeling refreshed, although my ankle still hurts and then has a peaceful morning walk. The sun rises in the morning are magical!
We had to climb a tough hill right out of the gate and when I got to the top I met up with a German man named Marcus who is such a great person! We had the chance to walk a couple days ago together and then twice today. I could see a friendship here. He is genuine, sensitive, talkative and very reflective of his journey.
Today we started to hit the plains of Spain and I finally started to feel at peace and very grateful today. I get nervous at times walking alone but today felt very safe knowing my friend Marcus was ahead, another friend Rasmus and Joe were behind me and also Sonya was kilometers ahead as well but I would meet up with at the coffee shop.
I am doing my best to stay mindful and reflective. It is amazing how much more present you become when you walk hours on end, have physical pain and need to be present of your steps and you notice things as if you saw them for the first time. However, every moment we ever have is for the first time and we truly do not have the same experiences repeat.
This flower today served as my meditation as I walked. I focused on its inherent beauty and wondered about each of our own inherent beauty as a human beings and in difficult circumstances.
In Sanskrit, Sri means “inherent beauty” and it is interesting how we can forget that there is inherent beauty in everything but we get so clouded with our own misperspections, societal pressures, technological distractions, etc. I am extremely guilty of this because I swear my mind is hard wired to go negative easily but I am working hard to rewire my brain towards another path. Even my difficult moments here on the Camino, when I look back they truly presented some beautiful lessons. I think that is one of the key lessons, the simple fact that we are imperfect human beings is the inherent beauty because we demonstrating the complexities of what it is to be alive which is a pretty great thing and for me, the concept of life, is pretty phenomenal thing.
I met up with Marcus at some point and he asked to walk with me. We talked about some of our favorite moments of the Camino and about life in Germany and Colorado.
We passed by this awesome albergue which has been functioning for many years and it is very small. I forget who exactly it is ran by, I believe nuns but they wash the pilgrims feet who stay here and you all sleep together in the same room and eat together in the same room you sleep in. We went inside and it was a pretty cool building. Next time I do the Camino I will try and stay here.
We crossed this beautiful bridge and continued to walk until we hit our first town for our cafe con leche (coffee with milk) and Spanish tortilla (potato omelet). I met up with Sonya and the rest of the people in our group walking together but they were on their way out already. They are so fast!!! I stayed, ate and Marcus showed me this awesome website called the heart of the Camino that has albergues that are vegetarian, meditation and yoga focused!! I am going to try to hit up one of these places at some point but a lot are off the path of the Camino.
I walked by myself for some time again and saw a weird gross bug, lots of butterflies and some snails. Not sure how well you can see but this guy is completely black with strange red markings. When I approached it very much did not shy away and headed towards me. I looked them up and they are called Red stripe oil beetle and can release something that makes your skin blister…yikes!
I ran into Marcus again on the path. This happens a lot, you run into a lot of familiar faces and depending on the person you may walk and talk or move along. My ankle was hurting me at this point and it was so hot that it was great to have company! We had amazing conversations about music and to our surprise we have a lot of similar music interests in common and he introduced me to two new musicians who now I really enjoy – Charlie Cunningham and Jesse Woods!
I was happy to get to Frómista and luckily had a cold glass of water waiting for me! The hospitalero Jose was a character and really enjoyed talking with him!