I am ready for the last day. It is funny I am both excited and a little stressed at the same time. I understand the excitement but don’t really get the stress part.
Today’s journey is about 22.5k. By all standards at this point a short walk. However the terrain is a lot of up and downs. There is no easy finish to my pilgrimage to Santiago.
My walking buddies and I were all up bright and early at around 5am. Crazy I know but no alarm clock was involved, just sheer adrenalin. We hit the road about 5:45am in the rain. Full rain gear donned and head lamps lighting our way. With just a few stops we arrived in Santiago by 11:00am. We went to the pilgrims office first but the line was long and a friend told us that the albergues were filling fast. So off we went to find a room. We ended up going to several before we found a pension that had a triple and a single. A total dump even by pilgrim standards but a great location just off cathedral square.
With that out of the way we were off to the noon pilgrims mass. By the time we got there at 11:45 the cathedral was so full that standing room only was an understatement. As always the mass was beautiful. As a bonus they swing the botafumeria.
After the mass we greeted all of our friends with big hugs and congratulations. It is an awesome experience to be able to see all of the people that you have met along the way.
This is a statue at Monte Gonzo at the top of the hill just above the city of Santiago. It is all downhill from here.
Just in and feeling soggy but happy!
Got all 3 documents. My second Compostela, the new certificate of distance walked, and a special Compostela issued by the Convento do San Francisco de Asis commemorating 800 years of service. This Compostela is only issued every 100 years. It has special meaning to me since my baptismal name is Francis after Saint Francis of Asisi.