People have asked me – what did it feel like to be done? This was my last journal entry.
When I reached the final destination, Catedral de Santiago de Compostela, I sat on the square and cried.
Now settled in the hotel I feel “off the Camino ” and I don’t want to walk on the streets without my mochilla (knapsack) because I want still to identify as a peregrino.I have a whole stored suitcase full of clothes at my disposal but I cannot bring myself to change out of my hiking gear. I had lunch in the hotel dining room and I felt lonely for the first time on the whole trip even though I have often dined alone along the way.
For 12 days I have been in such a sacred space, there was so much room there and so much magnificent silence. Now the city and its people intrude on me.
I think there is also a fear that something will leave me, that the Camino’s magic will not survive the reentry. I feel the need to move slowly back into the world.
From my hotel room I can see out over the roofs of the city and past the red tiles and the white stucco glaring in the sun, there are hills and carved in the side of the tallest one is a path. I do not know if it is a Camino path but it calls to me. I yearn for that path like an absent lover.
I am grateful for this experience, grateful beyond measure.