I woke up today dreaming of my Camino buddy Pat.
In my dream, she was not the spunky Pat that walked with me over 350 miles across northern Spain on our pilgrimage, but the Pat she became after surgery to fight the brain cancer that eventually killed her.
Sometimes the veil between earth and heaven is über thin, and I can almost hear the voice of those I love who no longer walk this earthly pilgrimage.
June will always be associated with Pat and the Camino for me. And the Camino will forever remind me of the wonder and awe that God delights in surprising me with—with each of us—at the most unexpected moments.
From my Camino journal, 13 years ago this week:
Notas: Today we walked through the town of Castañeda, location of the 12th century lime ovens used to constroct the Santiago de Compostela’s cathedral! – Pilgrims once carried stones from Triascastela to these ovens.
Tonight we had dinner at the local bar during the “off” hours – the woman in charge, Ana, took pity on us and sent her worker/daughter? Maria to serve us -- in spite of the place being closed. After dinner, when I thanked her for taking care of us she told me how once when she and her husband were traveling they arrived at the town early, too early for dinner. But they had to get some food – and the restaurant wouldn’t serve them because it was not the right time, although she could see the food already prepared... She swore she would never do that… thank you God for Ana!
Yesterday when Mass at the parish church ended, one of the pilgrim’s (an older man with a bushy beard whom I had see at the Melide albergue earlier) started siging an ode to Mary. He had perfect pitch and sang with the trained voice of a professional.
It was amazing—and the regular parishioners stayed at the church to listen to him, reverently standing and facing the front altar until he was done. He just stood there, holding a little book and singing… he seemed to have a German accent? Or perhaps French…