We had hosted a couple of couch surfers the summer of 2012 - one from Canada and her friend from Santiago de Compostela. So, this was to be our next destination. Gloria was a sweetheart to receive some of my packages of souvenirs that I had mailed from Rumania, Germany and a couple of other places. Since we were leaving in a couple of days back to the States, we took these with us.
|Leaving Catalonia by train for northeast Spain.|
|We saw fields and fields of beautiful sunflowers along the way.|
The pilgrimage goes to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in northwestern Spain, where tradition has it that the remains of the apostle Saint James are buried. Legend has it that St. James' body was taken to Galicia by boat from Jerusalem and carried inland to where Santiago de Compostela is now located. The pilgrimage is believed by some to be one of three pilgrimages for which the sins of the pilgrim will be forgiven. People have been walking the trail since the Middle Ages.
|You can see on this building some sketches of pilgrims walking.|
|We arrived on a rainy day as we made our way through the old streets.|
|Once on the Camino, the pilgrim has three duties: to sleep, to eat, and to walk.|
The local town cryer was a cool old man who had lots of personality as he wandered up and down the streets of Santiago de Compostela.
The cathedral is the supposed burial-place of St. James the Great, one of the apostles of Jesus Christ. The building is a Romanesque structure with later Gothic and Baroque additions.
|The Cathedral is the center of EVERYTHING with Pilgrims coming from EVERYWHERE!|
in the Iberian Peninsula. In 44 AD he was beheaded in Jerusalem. His remains were later brought back to Galicia, Spain. Following Roman persecutions of Spanish Christians, his tomb was abandoned in the 3rd century.
|We walked down to see the actual tomb of St. James.|
|G-O-L-D everywhere - it really was a magnificent cathedral.|
|St. James....the Apostle of Jesus Christ who supposedly is buried here in the Cathedral.|
|We'll have to come back tomorrow when it's a sunny day.|
|Hey...the rain has stopped for a moment!|
|So we did...we came back the next day to see the Cathedral in the sun.|
In the middle of the square, you can see the Power of Intellect, Church, Government, and Kings...there are four different buildings to look at with each a different purpose. So interesting!
One of the most fun things to do was to watch all of the people come into the city. There was one main way to come in, so when you came in that way, the Cathedral was spectacular and all of the people would look up in awe. They came with walking sticks, backpacks, and most looked REALLY tired from walking hundreds of miles.
|This guy didn't have an arm.|
|I loved seeing young people reach the final destination.|
|Many just laid down and looked at the Cathedral after their long journey.|
|Next....the Pilgrims would wait in a long line to get their certificate.|
|This one was NOT one of the Pilgrims!|
|This older couple was so proud to show us their certificate which meant they would have ETERNAL LIFE!!|
|Bicycling was ok, too, to be counted as a Pilgrim.|
|Scrumptious Razor Clams|
|The cheese-stuffed eggplant was to die for!|
|These razor clams are quite tasty! You won't find these in Idaho!|
|Sea Bass for our entree - dee-lish!|
|Dessert - a pancake with caramel and ice cream - YUM!|
|Enjoying our time with Gloria in Santiago de Compostela|
|What a great host Gloria was! We loved our time with her!|
The next day found us wandering around the city, exploring new sites and enjoying the beautiful weather.
|Isn't this a great photo in which Rich captured a butterfly resting?|
|I love these beautifully knitted flower pots on the walls.|
|One of these days I'm going to get up to a Juliette window!|
|Shall I take a bite of this prickly fruit off the tree? (I think not!)|
|These were REALLY good, but I can't remember what they were - oops!|
|Do people really eat EVERYTHING on the chickens?|
|Please Senorita - Can you spare some change in my hat!|
On the next post, we actually will walk on the Camino Trail - about 10 kilometers....really fun!