I lost my wallet. Something told me to look for it before I left at 6am (trying to beat the rain) and it wasn't where it was supposed to be. So I walked back to the cafe where last I used it for dinner and didn't find it. I came back to my room and waited for the hotel owner to start the day at 7:30am. She told me to ring the doorbell of the restaurant because the owners lived upstairs.
I got my wallet back with my credit card but no cash. Who knows who took it as I left it on the outdoor cafe table. I'm content to have my credit card however. The hotel owner was so happy for me. I'm glad she was at my side to help me out.
Later I chatted and had a late breakfast with Marilo of Melbourne Australia (her parents are Spaniards) and Gilan of Quebec. We encountered some drizzle but not the forecast rains. We walked side by side on the optional rural trail for almost 2.5 hours, with a few spots that narrowed where we would walk single file.
I proceeded from Villalcázar alone along the wide senda (path beside the highway dedicated to pilgrims) but to one side, with room on the other side for people to pass. By the time I got to Carrión de Los Condes, my feet seemed fine and I got a lovely casita. I lunched in my room on canned sardines and bread, then sat at the river, napping some, dipping my feet into the frigid water. Grabbed some groceries for tomorrow's lunch, missed most of the rosary at church, but got to the mass and ran into Uli there.
The blessing of peregrinos afterwards was lovely. The priest gave us all a blessing regardless of our faith. Then he and a sister from the adjoining Augustinian monastery did a laying on of hands and personal blessing. We got a gift of a paper star to take home, made by the sisters and representing the hope of Christ even in the darkest night.
My burger dinner had a fried egg and bacon on top. That's a blessing too.
As I right this, a blister returned as it did last night, on the left foot. I'm resting and thinking about the interconnectedness of people. I keep running into a group of French older ladies who are walking the Camino. Also, everywhere I turn are the Texas A&M students. And at all the churches, I meet the same pilgrims.
We don't really know each other, and yet we do. We aren't walking together, and yet we are. We leave and arrive at different times, perhaps taking different optional routes, but we all want to go to the same place. We suffer the same rains, and revel in the same beautiful skies. We are distinct. We are one.
Whether we walk ahead or are running behind, walk alone or as a class, walk in silence or in constant dialogue, walk single file or side by side, we are heading towards our destiny. And we make room for those who might need to pass, or who we ourselves pass, or walk beside. We make room in our hearts as well, so that our many thoughts and feelings can lurch ahead or slowly meander through our lives.
I walked alone for the last 90 minutes, but there was room beside me. And that space wasn't empty. We walked side by side. Me. You. Those on our prayer lists. Those whom we love. And the One who created us. We walk side by side, and because of that I feel safe and loved.
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