We had a lot of time to get to Santiago only 10 km so we started late about 8:30 It was a misty humid morning 12-14° with a few kilometers along asphalt road, and then into semi forest, dirt and paved roads. About 10 :00 we came to a monument to pope John Poul 2 on top of a hill, looking towards Santiago, unfortunately as it was so misty we could not see Santiago in sunshine.
There was also a bar there, were we drank cokes and met quite a few old aqaintences we had not seen in days. Here i forgot my fleece jacket with gorilla tripod in the pocket. (really good expensive jacket).
On the outskirts of Santiago I was walking beside Rick on an old unkept wooden bridge on my right hand side was a crash barrier seperating us from the heavy traffic and underneath the motorway. Rick trod on a loose plank which tipped up on my side, I tripped on this, fell forward but couldn’t stop because of the weight of my rucksack, and fell on my face although bleeding from the mouth I had not broken any teeth or nose. I don’t how, but my right knee got lifted up and caught between the post bracket holding the crash barrier i needed help getting my knee out. I got some ice cubes from a bar to help stop the bleeding, but later went over to buying ice cream lollies.
Rick and Connie thought I should take a rest but we pressed on. Jim was dissapointed that he did not get a photo of me falling because he thought it looked funny.
When we got to the main square outside the cathedral we met Holly an English girl we had met on the way several times, she told us that the mass in the cathedral was starting soon, where we could deposit our rucksacks and get to mass in time and to see the swinging of the incense. Rick and Jim weren’t interested and wanted to find the hotel. Connie and I deposited our stuff and found a good place in the cathedral.
About 30 minutes later Rick and Jim turned up they just wanted a quick look and leave, but the doors were locked. Later they told us that they were glad they attended the service.
We had a lunch and a couple of beers in the warm sunshine before finding the pilgrims office to collect our compostela. While standing in the queue who did we see but Russ and Beth, we made an agreement to meet and have dinner together. After queueing for an hour and a half, we got our compostela stamp.
Went back to the hotel with our bags and checked in. After a long soaking got dressed and went sightseeing on my own. After taking a few photos i saw someone waving at me from a table on a side street , it was Karin a french woman we had met a couple of times before at different albergues, so I took a glass of wine with her and chatted about ” now what?” Daily life was calling, back to work. Rick and Connie walked past so we said goodbye and wished each other good luck in the future.
We had made arrangements with Marika earlier to have dinner with us, so that all of us that had started out together should have our final dinner together Rick, Connie, Russ, Beth, Marika, Jim and i, the reason there was only us, was simple some had gone home, some had finished days before, but this little group kept meeting up regularly without it being prearranged.
At dinner (tapas) I told Marika that I had planned to visit Muxia and Finisterre by bus but everywhere was booked up, she said let me try online, with the bus company she was booked on. She got me the last vacant seat on the bus with her. After dinner we said our goodbyes to Russ and Beth (lovely people) we others would see each other tomorrow and went back to our hotels.