Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Camino People


One of the special things about the Camino is the people you meet - it is not mandatory - there are probably those peregrinos who keep completely to themselves - walking alone - eating alone - keeping silent the entire time.  Then there are those like us - we are people persons - we enjoy meeting people from other places - using our best skills to communicate with them.  Although English - in one form or another - is the universal language - on the Camino there is a large number of people who are only able to communicate through a language not native to them. On numerous occasions I have had to use my limited Spanish with a peregrino whose native tongue was neither English or Spanish - yet we were able to understand each other and communicate - both with limited Spanish - a testament to people seeking to communicate with others.

Last night at the albergue In Villadangos del Paramo - I did just that with a fellow from France - my one year of French failed me - yet I was able to learn from him that he was traveling with his wife - that they had started their Camino in Le Puy, France and they lived in the southern part of France.  This morning as we were heading to Astorga - we met a couple from California - John and Sharon - he a semi-retired dentist in practice with his son - and a young woman from Korea - Pureun - who said I should call her "Blue" since her name in Korean translates into blue in English.  I asked her why she would use that - as I did not find her name difficult to pronounce - but - obviously she had other experiences to prove otherwise. She apologized for her bad English - but I had no problem learning that she was traveling alone - was a communication student who had decided not to continue at university because it was very expensive - about $14,500 per year in US dollars - and that she was coping with a tender knee issue - similar to Arlene's.  

The places that we see and visit are all very special - each in their own right - but what really makes each and everyone so special - are the people who designed and constructed them - hundreds and thousands of years ago before modern technology and equipment.

                                 Albergue in Villadangos de Paramo - 72 Beds

                                           John and Sharon From California

        Sharon took a bad fall and ended up with black and blue eyes and nose - ouch!

                                                Pureun - "Blue" From Korea

                                                               Astorga

                                                      Plaza Catedral

                                                   Museum of Caminos

                                                   Museum of Caminos

                                                    Pilgrim Statues at Museum

                                                            Plaza Catedral

                                                           Old Bell Tower

                                             Entrance to Catedral Santa Maria 

                                                      Santa Maria Cathedral

                                                          Santa Maria

                                                        Tonight's Albergue


          Outdoor Area To Wash Clothes - Note 3 Fonts in Wall With Running Water

                              Our Dormitory - 11 Beds - We Took Lower Bunks

                                                     Dormitory Ceiling

                                            Afternoon Drink and Snack Time

Another interesting fact about Spain - breakfast is always coffee - orange juice and toast with marmalade. If you like espresso - you order cafe solo - if you want it with milk - cafe con leche - the toast is the size of what we would call "Texas Toast" and it is served with butter and some variety of fruit marmalade complete with knife and fork - in Spain you do not hold the toast with your fingers. For our afternoon snack we got a single order - solo - of huevas fritas con jamon con platas fritas y pan - basically fried eggs with bacon and french fries - and a large bread roll. Bread in the afternoon or with dinner is never served with butter - interesting - and eggs is either an afternoon snack or one of the first courses at dinner time - but never at breakfast. Since I love breakfast at any time of day - this suits me just fine.  Six bells - 18:00 or 6:00pm - only an hour and a half until dinner!

Buen Camino
Dale and Arlene