Friday, July 07, 2017

Prayer, Penance, Pilgrims

and Pizza.

   I started out my journey on WOW air with a ridiculously expensive mid air Margherita Pizza and instantly regretted it.

   If you follow this blog I am going to give you tips on navigating Spain particularly if you are interested in going on the pilgrimage walk of the Camino de Santiago de Compostello.  I am going the cheapest way possible and will provide tips on economy travel.

  Then I landed in Barcelona and its now my happy place. A two day metro ticket is the best way to have unlimited metro travel around the city. The metro is convenient, more modern and clean than New York's system.

The Sagrada Familia is amazing.
Note to file- book tickets on line in advance of going-they sold out for the day by 2:00 pm to get inside and for security reasons you need to get a ticket and cannot just walk in. The main Cathedral in Barcelona you can pay at the door without any problem-a 7 Euro ticket to gets you in (might be different if a Mass is going on) but it is well worth it because it is absolutely magnificent- with unbelievable art in the chapels. Stunningly beautiful. The choir stalls with all the family shields is magnificent. The cloister walk surrounds a pond with many swimming swans. Yes, live swans. So beautiful. A must see. The Cathedral is in the old part of town with narrow shop lined streets. There is a main tourist information center near it.

  I am off to the Camino de Santiago de Compostello. I get started in Pamplona soon where I am told I get a passport that gets stamped along the way. Please pray I don't get run over by any Bulls- it is the Feast of St. Fermin (note to file-google who the St. Fermin is an what the heck he has to do with being run over by the bulls used in the bull fighting) where the healthy men of the town run with bulls and get periodically trampled and gored. Somehow I think Saint Fermin is spinning in his grave.

   For those who don't know Saint James is allegedly buried headless in a tomb in the town Basillica of Compostello. Where is his head I wonder? There are probably three of them in Rome. I once ran into a local from Compostello who said actually he probably isn't in there but its a good enough ruse to get tourist traffic from conned pilgrims. I was undeterred by the skeptic. Its a Faith Journey.

   I am going to try to keep my sense of humor while sweating it out and bunking with hundreds of other pilgrims in open hostels, washing clothes on a rock like a cave woman and eating herbs along the way. If I can grab mass at local churches I will be insanely happy.

Please pray for me- if you email or facebook comment me I will pray for your needs as well.

Pictures to follow when internet connections permit. I may also be posting some on facebook. I am keeping a journal so i can share more details later.



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