Day 37, 2016 - Portomarin to Casa Nova


When moving forward,

unable to see ahead

one must keep the faith.

Starting out early with a destination in mind didn't seem to make a day's walk seem any shorter. The last 5 kilometers could never come soon enough. Today, the trek began just as the sun began to rise; the fog not yet lifted. Looking back over my shoulder, I was glad I didn't have to cross back over the bridge the way I'd come. Reduced speed or not, cars passing me in fog surely wasn't a good idea.

I like fog, though. Reduced visibility creates a sense of mystery. But not being able to see more than a few feet in front of you makes finding the way more difficult and increases the chance of taking a wrong turn. Still, relying more fully on the senses to guide allows for greater chance of trusting instincts and adapting perspective. 

After already walking 24 kilometers, it seemed time for a break. My feet were hurting but I'd arrived at my intended destination and could stop. I took off my boots and socks to relax and settled in at an outside table at a bar with a cold San Miguel to quench my thirst. Looking at the guidebook, I soon realized that the place I'd intended to stay was not in this town but in one 8 kilometers down the road. This realization was daunting but at least it was still early in the day and with feet already barred, I could retape them and be on my way. I didn't know at this point that an older man (whose job I'd earlier decided was to direct each on-coming pilgrim to where the Camino turned) had understood my dilemma. He offered to drive me the 8 kilometers to the place I had booked for the night. Did I trust him? Was I sure I understood the Spanish he was speaking? Did he really know where it was I needed to go? I decided yes, yes and yes.

So, those last 5 dreaded kilometers of the day turned into 8 but this time, they passed at a quickened pace as I sat with the window down and the breeze in my face. Driving down the road, this man described the places we passed. One was where he fished with his grandson. Another was a shortcut. Although I didn't know much about him...only what I could see and hear, I trusted him and I trusted my instincts. He dropped me right where I needed to be, refusing money for his effort. A difficult day was made easier by one with no other motivation but to help another. Do I believe in Camino angels? Yep, right then and there I knew they existed.