This week, our colleague Ruben shares his special Camino story:
Ruben: Jennifer, what do you think about doing something different for our wedding’s anniversary this year?
Jennifer: What do you mean by different? I was thinking of a nice trip to Paris tasting a bottle of French wine from the 2nd floor of the Eiffel Tower.
Ruben: That’s not a bad idea, but what about doing something really human, like walking, just walking from one place to another, you and me, no pressure, no time for meetings, surrounded by a cultural and natural atmosphere? I think the Portuguese Coastal Camino would be a nice choice.
Jennifer: That sounds good. It is a nice challenge that we’ll take it together; as a real team, friends, humans, a couple.
Ruben: Let’s go to the Camino, then!
First day: Baiona
What a nice evening we had in Baiona on the day before starting to walk! Walking around the unique town of Baiona, across the narrow and old-preserved facades, wooden columns and arches. All the nice atmosphere was great, and I felt so grateful to be part of it; strolling along the streets, there was an incredible mixture of friendly local people smiling and giving us a warm “Hola” with people from all over the world having their lifetime experience.
We went slightly out of the center of Baiona to walk along the promenade while enjoying a hand-made ice cream. We just sat down on a picnic area; what a beautiful views while the cun was slowling setting. We have the beach with small fishing boats in front of us and the historical and majestic Parador de Baiona, also, know as the “Conde de Gondomar’s Parador”, situated up the hill of the Fortress of Monterreal.
It was there where we were to stay our first night; but, of course, we couldn’t go to sleep without having our dinner first; so, we decided to taste the delicious Albariño wine, which is typical in Galicia and very smooth, fresh and flavoursome I have to say, and we had a nice “Mariscada”, so, a wide range of grilled seafood made of prawns, lobsters, oysters, mussels and so on and how I could forget about an irresistible portion of Galician octopus. It was one of the best dinners we had had in our life.
Once in the Parador, at the balcony of our room with the calm sea and the moonlight reflected on it, I looked at my wife’s eyes and I exclaimed: 6 years since we got married!
And 11 years together! said Jennifer
Frightening feelings came to me; how fast the time goes by and life itself; no matter the time as long as your heart is happy with yourself and the person you are in love with.
The following day after having an impressive and tasty breakfast with plenty of variety, we left our luggage at reception knowing that CaminoWays was going to take good care of it in transferring it to the next town.
Before starting the official walk we walked around the walls to enjoy 360 panoramic views from up there; it was a little foggy but the sun was coming up and taking over. If you want to enjoy a sense of freedom with mental liberation this is the ideal place.
So, we were on our way to the next stage leaving Baiona behind and we were already nostalgic about it; since that place means a start for new and good things to come and we left some internal monsters behind; so; we turned our heads back to capture that moment and then we started to face what was yet to come, would that be finding our souls? We were to find the answers to our questions by ourselves along the way.
Last day: Santiago de Compostela
We couldn’t believe we were getting so close to our final destination. We were almost crying when we saw the Cathedral; we were 5 km away from Santiago.
We had put a lot of effort into it, we had become stronger both physically and mentally; we were going to make it; on the other hand, neither my wife or myself want our trip to end since we shared many nice and unforgettable moments along they way: such as walking along footpaths beside a river, meeting more pilgrims from around the world with interesting stories to tell and to share with, nice and comfortable accommodations that CaminoWays had carefully picked up for us, the natural hot springs in Caldas de Reis, the medieval and nice town of Pontevedra, the aromatic Eucalyptus-tree woods after leaving Vigo, the long and sandy beach “America” between Baiona and Vigo with our walking shoes in our hands and every little wave reaching our feet; every time we came across with a sign like a yellow arrow or a Camino stone with the Kilometers left to reach Santiago, which livens you up a lot and keeps you motivated…
We had realized that the Camino had kept us away from this busy stressful world and we had held conversations and we got to know new things of our past, our childhood, each other’s points of view, sharing different perspectives and finding a lot of common ground and same purpose in life.
The peaceful Camino atmosphere gave us an extraordinary chance to find ourselves and each other once again. Some days were sunny whereas others were cloudy but what mattered was that we were on the Camino and we had made it ours.
The moment of getting into the main square in Santiago and admire the Cathedral cannot be described unless you are there. We saw many people full of joy, they had made it, too. Everyone had the same goal and different motivations and reasons to do the Camino. My wife and I looked at each other and we thought; well, the Camino is done, but our own Camino in life will drive us to a bright future.
PS. You may think, haven’t you skipped too many details from between day 1 and last day? and you are right; however, I believe you have to experience your own Camino story yourself and I didn’t want to spoil it for you. Don’t wait any longer and contact CaminoWays today!