On my way … Day 33 … Arzua to Lavacolla

Tuesday, June 14, 2018 … 28 km … 17 miles

Today’s Path 

As with the previous few days since Sarria, there are lots of hamlets and villages along the way for food and water. Today we walk on natural pathways with good shade offered by the ubiquitous eucalyptus. Most of the day is flat with a few ups and downs, with a few big climbs. After the climb by the airport, the remaining kilometers will be a gentle walk into Lavacolla.  

Due to no rooms in O’Pedrouzo, we will bypass this city and keep walking to Lavacolla. A little longer walk today which gives us a very easy short walk into Santiago tomorrow. 

Reading from my journal this morning, it spoke to me. This will be my mantra today … 

Let Your God Love You

Be silent. Be still. Alone. Empty Before your God.  

Say nothing. Ask nothing. Be silent. Be still. 
Let your God look upon you. That is all.

God knows. God understands. God loves you 
With an enormous love, and only wants to look upon you with that love. 

Let your God— 
Love you. 

Edwina Gateley

Leaving Arzua 

As we ate our breakfast at the hostel, we looked over the guidebook. Plenty of options for breaks. Two of my favorite stops are on this stretch. A great little breakfast place, Casa Calzada, and at the top of Santa Irene another great restaurant perfect for lunch. Today is full of stops so we will just wait and see where we are led.  

The last few days have been great weather. After all the rain on this Camino, we are enjoying the sun. It’s still a little cool in the mornings but still warms up nicely. As we leave Arzua, the fog is laying on the fields and the breeze is cool. But as the morning sun starts to rise the fog starts to lift. It’s going to be a beautiful day! 

We slowly make our way to Casa Calzada and stop for breakfast and the much-needed bathroom. This was exactly what everyone else needed, so the wait was a little long but well worth it.  

After a great breakfast and chatting with all of our friends, we head on. We have a long day ahead of us. 

Cale left breakfast a little early, he said his feet were hurting him and he didn’t want to sit for long. I figured we would see him up the path somewhere. Off he went. 

Casa Tia Dolores 

Just a few kilometers up the Camino, we came to Casa Tia Dolores. This place is famous for the Pilgrim Beer. It’s a Camino tradition, to stop and get a beer and write your name on a bottle and leave it in the stone walls. So, some of us did just that. It was still too early for me and I just couldn’t drink the beer, so I decided to keep walking. Still no sign of Cale. 

We continued along the way.  

It was a joyful day.

I fell into prayer … the kind of prayer that depends on listening in the stillness and the silence. Listening to my feet, to the walking sticks, to the birds singing, and to the pilgrims chatting. I listened to my breath as I breathed God in and breathed God out. I was listening to the inner voice of love. This is always the sound of our hearts. Love … let it flow.

We arrived at our climb. As we walked up to Santa Irene, I started to walk quickly. I really had to use the restroom. I yelled back to my group, see you at the restaurant, I can’t stop.

Santa Irene

All was well, I arrived and was able to slip into the restroom. I then returned outside to find everyone pulling tables together so we could eat lunch. I really thought Cale would be here waiting for us, but still no sign of him. We sat under the trees and enjoyed our lunch and our conversations with all of our friends. We kept seeing people we hadn’t seen in a while, it was nice.

Eucalyptus Forests 

As we left Santa Irene, we started to enter the Eucalyptus Forests. Oh, the smell, it was amazing. These trees are huge and beautiful. But I learned something about these trees. 

“Eucalyptus trees were introduced into Spain from Australia in 1865 with the intent for use in construction. All was well until they realized these trees consume lots of water and they were changing the ecosystem.” 

Lots of controversy about these trees, but today as I walked, I didn’t think of this and I just enjoyed the aroma which was relaxing and beautiful! 

We arrived to the turn where the Camino goes up to O’Pedrouzo, unfortunately we kept going straight. Only 8 more kilometers. I just kept telling myself that tomorrow was going to be a breeze.

People were already celebrating on the Camino. As you walked up to a cafe, everyone would cheer. Celebrating the walk. Of course, some of these pilgrims had a little cerveza to help them celebrate. We kept walking.

Does this Camino marker say, 13 km? We are so close!

As we topped our last big hill for the day, we could see the Santiago airport. We left the forests behind us and now we were walking the suburbs of Santiago. It was 3:00 and the sun was hot.

Still no sign of Cale, I figured he was at out hostel.

We now only had 2 kilometers ahead of us, I was so ready to get there. My feet were tired and the sun was hot.

Walking along the fence of the airport!

Cale had arrived early, had an amazing lunch and was sleeping in the sun in the backyard of the hostel! Which is exactly where we found him.

Our Hostel: Albergue Lavacolla, 32 beds … 12 Euros

We arrived around 4. After doing our usual chores, we just enjoyed the yard and hanging out with everyone. The grocery store was across the street from the hostel. It was a little one, but it had everything we needed. Tonight, Minh was cooking us dinner. We waited for the Baby Family to finish up their dinner and then we jumped into the kitchen and started cooking. We were all excited about tomorrow. Tomorrow we will be walking into Santiago!

As we were going to bed, Natalie and Cale started picking on each other. I told them they acted like brother and sister, which they have done the entire Camino. But I needed a picture of my children. haha. Here they are. We were having so much fun!

My Journal: 

Arzua to Lavacolla, June 14, 2018 … 28 km … 17 miles

Sunny all day and even was hot! Perfect day.

Today we saw so many of our friends. Walked most of the day with Luca, Natalie, Minh and Sue. Rodney, Tim and Daniel were also always around us. Tonight we will all be staying at the same place again. Along with the Baby family.

Cales feet were bothering him today, so he walked at a faster pace and didn’t want to take breaks, so he pretty much walked on his own today.

Even though it was long, we walked at a nice casual pace. Stopping for many breaks and having fun. Experiencing the Camino and staying present to all around us.

I still can’t believe tomorrow is the day! We walk into Santiago! Everyone is excited.

Blessed are you, pilgrim, because you have discovered that the true Camino begins at its end

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Not sure if you want to walk it alone or with a group?

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