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Published: October 4th 2009
Hola! Yes we did it! We arrived at the cathedral in Santiago as hoped just after midday on Friday (about 8.00pm your time). It was certainly a most emotinal moment. To be honest the past two days have been incredibly emotional. Poor Bill has had to supply endless hugs and hankies! We walked from the outskirts of Santiago into the cathedral´s plaza for what seemed like hours. Bill´s feet were aching but he kept on going! Finally we saw the spire of the Cathedral. It was not like Burgos though... for me it was not until I was actually at the Cathedral that I realised I hadfinished... even then it was a long time before i could accept that I had completed my original challenge.
We took time to savour the moment... we sat for ages in the plaza watching as other pilgrims arrived... the same feelings of ectasy, exhaustion, excitement, disbelief and almost numbness at times were obvious on those who followed the path into the plaza and in front of the cathedral. Lots of photos were taken; hugs shared etc... I am sure you can imagine the scene.
We did what lots of pilgrims do... we then made our way to the Pilgrim Office to get our certifcate... to authenticate the fact that we had completed the Camino... I didn´t really need this: I now I have walked the Camino!!!!
Everywhere we went people were smiling... knowing that we were all sahring a special achievement. We later found somewhere to eat, as ttypical of our pilgrim way, of course and somewhere to sleep for the two nights we planned to have in Santiago.
As i said earlier, the euphoria of finally being in Santiago was very emtional but in reality I don´t know that it has even now, sunk in that I have finished. Yesterday Bill and I celebrated. We went to Pilgrim Mass in the cathedral... my gosh, what an occasion, what an incredible moment to always remember... full of special aspects incluidng having a choir there and.... yes, they swung the botafumeiro..the incense burner. WOW!!!!!! Did we feel special then. I must admit to crying lots... I oculdn´t hold back all the feelings i had... so much centreed on being thankful for getting there safely and fo rthe support of all my frioends and family (alll SO important to me!!!)
After Mass we enjoyed a long lunch at the (very expensive) Paradores Cafe... great seats outside watching over the Cathedral plaza... what a treat. great food and wine. lots of sun, wonderful company and lots to talk about (still!).
Today we have made our way by bus to Finisterre... the "end of the earth"... unfortunately it has rained all day!!! But then again, we have been soooooo lucky not to have had rain until now in Galicia. The sun has shone continuously. All being well it will be fine tomorrow and we will complete the walk out to the lighthouse here... a final part of the camino trek. Then....
well, then we will be just simple ol´tourists. We think we will go to Barcelona from here (via Santiago) and use it as a base for a bit of r and r and exploring around. To London on 13th and then home on 17th October.
I have so enjoyed sharing all this with you all. Thanks again for being there. Not sure if I will keep blogging... maybe every other day or so.
Take care and enjoy the school hols.
Adios mes amigos! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
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