Maria however wasn’t the first to wonder about life in Santiago. It is a small place compared to my home city in Scotland and the metropolis of London where I lived for many years. As a medieval town Santiago couldn’t be more different. But in term time it becomes a vibrant student city with all of the features of that. Bars and cafes are crammed and music throbs well into the night. When the students aren’t here the pilgrims are arriving in huge numbers. Santiago may be small but it is busy and exciting with new faces to be seen every day.
I thought I’d tell you some of the things I’ve been up to recently as well as showing you some of the places I hang out.
During the week will find me back in the Pilgrims’ Office for some of the time. I don’t go every day now. Pilgrims numbers are less and other projects are beckoning. I’m revising and editing guides as well as working on the development of a Welcome Service for English speaking pilgrims. This is supported by the Confraternity of St James and the Irish Society of Friends of the Camino. We have formed an International Committee to develop this and perhaps other projects. I’ll tell you more as plans emerge. It takes around a week to do a thorough revision of a guide book including preparing the versions for publication and I’m now trying to persuade other people to help make maps for the on-line guides as this would be a great bonus.
I’ve got myself organised at home with internet and cable television. I mention the latter because one of the wonders of modern technology is that if a programme dubbed in Spanish was made in English you can make it revert to the original at the touch of a button. The beloved BBC news has returned.
Santiago isn’t London but it does well with music festivals and concerts. A couple of weeks ago I was at a performance of the El Barbero de Sevilla in the concert hall and there is more I want to see later in the year.
One of the good things about living here is my ability to explore some of the pilgrim routes in a way I’ve never been able to before and I’m working on one page guides with the transport links for anyone who wants to try the last stages of another route after they have arrived in Santiago.
This morning has been spent doing a little practice, cleaning the flat, laundering and ironing clothes and paying bills. These things all still have to be done.
I’ll soon get ready to go and meet some people. Where will we go. Perhaps down this other narrow gap...which leads to another terrace...at the back of another special little restaurant.
Best wishes from Santiago. Good luck with your adventures.
Until next time.