A 57-day adventure by Diane A
  • Day57

    Madrid to Sydney

    June 16 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 10 °C

    I’m home!

    It was a long flight with a very long delay in Doha. But back home to my family and friends and my own bed.

    It will take some time to process everything I’ve experienced in the last few months but this will also be part of my camino.

    THE END (or is it?)
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    Traveler

    Or the beginning of the next one…and the one after that…

    6/17/22Reply
    Traveler

    Proud of you Di 👏 🥰

    6/18/22Reply
    Traveler

    Well done Diane, you did amazing. Bet it was lovely to be back in your own bed 💤

    6/19/22Reply
    Traveler

    ¡ Bienvenido a casa Di ! What an adventure !!!

    6/21/22Reply
     
  • Day55

    Madrid

    June 14 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 39 °C

    Another very hot 40 degree day to be walking around!

    I bought a ticket for the hop on hop off bus so that I could see a bit more on my last day. While waiting for the bus near a fancy hotel there was a huge police and security presence. And out came King Felipe VI! He stood next to his car quite close to where I was waiting. But not as close to me as the guard with the machine gun.

    My first stop on the bus was the Museo Sorolla as suggested by Narelle. It was formerly the home of the artist Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida and was full of ceramics, furniture and his beautiful paintings. It was not crowded and there was a lot of information in English which explained his art and his family life.

    I hopped back on the bus and tried both the historic and modern Madrid routes until it became too hot to enjoy anything.

    I caught the metro to my airport hotel as my flight is early in the morning. I wandered around in the heat trying to find a restaurant with a kitchen that was opening before 8pm - not an easy thing! But lucked upon a Japanese one that was slightly air conditioned and so my time here fittingly ended with a meal and a glass of vino tinto.

    I have loved every minute of Spain but am very excited to get home to my family and friends, some different clothes and my own bed. And a trip to the hairdresser!

    Hotel Villa de Barajas
    11 kms
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    Traveler

    Travel safely peregrina! A title well earned

    6/14/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    You’ll enjoy the cool weather and a walk at Woronora when you return. Safe travels Di.

    6/14/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    Ha ha. That looks like your perfect meal.

    6/14/22Reply
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  • Day54

    Madrid

    June 13 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 37 °C

    Breakfast came with my hotel room so I had a lazy morning. I then walked up to the Cortes area to have a look around.

    After lunch I went to the Thyssen-Bornemisza gallery as suggested by Sandra. It was much bigger than I expected and had a huge range of artists. The highlight was an immersive musical video installation by Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson which was amazing.

    It was 40 degrees today and very draining. It was a relief to get back to my air conditioned room.

    I heard from my camino friend Lesley from Durham today. She was also suffering an injury and we spent many days with each other filling in time eating, drinking, commiserating and chatting and then later bumping into each other. After a few more days of rest, she began walking again with Ann and Den and today walked into Finistere! An amazing achievement!

    Sleep’n Atocha
    12 kms
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    Traveler

    Had to share a bathroom at the hotel?😆

    6/14/22Reply
     
  • Day53

    Santiago to Madrid

    June 12 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 36 °C

    I caught an early taxi to the airport for my 9.20am flight to Madrid. We walked alongside the airport on the last leg of the Camino but it seemed much further in the taxi.

    I then caught the airport bus to Atocha Station and my hotel is just a short walk away. It’s another great room with big windows and a balcony overlooking the plaza.

    It’s very hot. I had a walk around the neighbourhood and another gigantic pizza for lunch (and the rest for dinner).

    After a brief siesta I went for a walk through some of Retiro Park and then through the Botanical Gardens. I joined the queue for the free entry into the Prado (every day for the last two hours of opening) but they reached the quota when I was almost at the front of the line. I will try again tomorrow. I have found that entry to most places is greatly reduced for the over 65s so it is fairly economical to go to most museums and galleries.

    Although it is Sunday a lot of shops were open and Madrid is very busy. It is an entirely different pace to my time in Spain so far and I am looking forward to seeing more tomorrow.

    Sleep’n Atocha
    10 kms
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    Traveler

    Love your posts Diane 😍 enjoy your time in Madrid . Xx

    6/12/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    Oh that is hot! If you like a beautiful small art gallery visit the stunning Museo Sorolla. Enjoy your last days.

    6/12/22Reply
     
  • Day52

    Santiago de Compostela

    June 11 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    We set off for a walk to the El Cortes Ingles which is a rare shopping centre/department store in Spain. We stopped for coffee on the way and saw Leigh Brennan walking her dog Cooper. Leigh is the host of the Camino Café podcast and I met her while staying at Casa Susi.

    On the way back from the shopping centre I saw Justin Skeesuck from I’ll Push You. He had just arrived in Santiago. We went over and introduced ourselves and chatted for a bit as you do with people from the Camino.

    After a delicious Italian meal we went to the Cathedral for our roof tour. Unfortunately it was in Spanish so we missed the history of the building but the views from the very, very sloped roof and tower were amazing.

    One of the great coincidences of the Camino was Sandra and I beginning on the same day in St Jean and both staying in Beilari. And both having the exact same backpack. As we were talked over the weeks we discovered an even greater connection. My dad came to Australia from Italy in 1951 and met Johnny Berton soon after. They remained close friends all their lives, dad was his best man and mum was Jessie’s matron of honour. We spent a lot of time with Johnny and Jessie and their four children when we were growing up. Carla is one of those children and is also one of Sandra’s closest friends. I will catch up with Sandra and Carla and hopefully Gina when we get home.

    My Camino really ends today as I leave for Madrid in the morning. What an adventure. I’ve loved all of it, even the bits that were very challenging at the time. Will I do it again? I will have to wait and see!

    Libredon Rooms
    12 kms
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    Traveler

    what an amazing journey Diane! Thank you so much for sharing it. I have loved reading about your adventures every day and eagerly examined every photo you posted. I'm in awe of you and your incredible achievements, particularly how well you faced your challenges. Thank you again

    6/11/22Reply
    Traveler

    Yes. You will be back!

    6/11/22Reply
    Traveler

    Lovely sharing our Camino time - at the beginning, the end some bits in the middle Di ❤️🤗 oh another coincidence discovered yesterday- both our mothers names were Eileen 😊 happy travels to you in Madrid. I await a bus to Porto today. Feeling nervous again 🙄 leaving the Camino bubble of friends and company xx

    6/12/22Reply
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  • Day51

    Finisterre to Santiago

    June 10 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    We caught an early bus back to Santiago de Compostela. It is very busy here - lots of pilgrims arriving and lots of locals as well. I have a different room in the same hotel facing another square and it is very loud and crowded but it still feels fun to be here.

    I bumped into Jenny Heesh down near the pilgrim’s office, you can never stop being surprised by the people you meet here when you least expect it. Jenny is from Cronulla and is the first person who gave me the idea about the Camino when we were volunteering together at the Sydney Writers’ Festival 3 years ago. So it was fitting to see her here when my Camino experience was coming to an end.

    Libredon Rooms (room 17)
    9kms
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    Traveler

    Enjoy Santiago. Another chance meeting!

    6/10/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    How amazing is that to see Jenny Hesh. Is she volunteering at the pilgrim’s office?

    6/10/22Reply
    Traveler

    No, she has been wandering Spain since early April and also had a foot injury. It was absolute sheer luck we saw her. I didn’t think to get a photo which was disappointing.

    6/10/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    Oh wow! Some of the best things just need to be remembered in your mind.

    6/11/22Reply
     
  • Day50

    Finisterre

    June 9 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    We walked to the lighthouse this morning and by the time we arrived around nine the mist had cleared and the views were very good.

    We then caught the bus to Cee to look around before the shops closed for siesta.

    I spent a bit of time fossicking on the beach below the apartment for sea glass - there was so much of it at low tide.

    Fish dinner on the waterfront and then an early night.

    Apartamento Con Vistas Al Mar
    14 kms
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    Traveler

    Great the weather cleared for you. Look forward to seeing your sea glass as I don’t know what it is!

    6/9/22Reply
    Traveler

    Did you find any scallop shells on Finisterre beach Di? I remember coming across them on my walk to Cee and while having a quick swim on the way.

    6/9/22Reply
    Traveler

    No, not any kind of shells on the beach near us, just lots and lots of tiny pieces of green glass washed up. They are beautifully coloured when wet but duller when dry. But still beautiful.

    6/9/22Reply
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  • Day49

    Muxia to Finisterre

    June 8 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Another relaxing morning before we caught the bus to Finisterre.

    We were very lucky with the weather while we were in Muxia - lots of sun and blue skies. This morning was overcast and drizzly.

    We have an apartment in Finisterre with wonderful water views. We have spent the afternoon walking on the beach outside the apartment and Sandra has collected a lot of beautiful sea glass. We will walk to the lighthouse tomorrow, hopefully the weather will clear.

    We finished off the cheese for dinner and then went for a walk around town. The bays around the coastline are clear and calm, it’s beautiful.

    Apartamento Con Vistas Al Mar
    8 kms
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    Traveler

    Gorgeousness so so happy for you both xx

    6/8/22Reply
    Traveler

    51 days and Muxia and Finisterre too👏👏👏 cup

    6/10/22Reply
     
  • Day48

    Muxia

    June 7 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 18 °C

    A lazy morning - what a treat it is not to have to pack up each morning and jam that big sleeping bag into that tiny stuff sack.

    We found the correct path this morning up to the cross on Monte Corpino that we tried to find on our scramble up the hill yesterday. The view from there was amazing - it is such a beautiful place.

    We went back for another seafood lunch at A Marina and was joined by Eleanor from Dublin.

    We stopped at the supermarket and the bakery for some wine, bread and cheese which we had for our dinner on the terrace this evening while we watched the seagull parents and chicks on the roofs around us. They are very entertaining.

    It has been such a relaxing and enjoyable few days.

    Bela Muxia
    8 kms
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    Traveler

    Sounds beautiful Di and so well deserved 👏 ❤️

    6/7/22Reply
    Traveler

    Great view

    6/7/22Reply
    Traveler

    I think you have earned some relaxation time Di 🥰🥰

    6/8/22Reply
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  • Day47

    Santiago to Muxia

    June 6 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    I had another relaxing morning laying in bed and looking out of my window to the skyline near the Cathedral. Sandra and I later walked to the bus station and caught the service to Muxia, about 90 minutes away. The weather was grey and misty and the weather app predicted 100% chance of rain all day. But when we reached the coast the sun magically appeared and the sky was blue. We are staying in lovely private rooms at Bela Muxia (another of Narelle’s exceptional recommendations).

    Muxia is beautiful. There are ocean and bay views from all directions. We scrambled up a huge hill behind our accommodation and the view was amazing (my foot is finally getting better - not quite, but enough to get around more easily). We then walked along the seaside which is lined with restaurants and chose one that specialised in Galician local seafood. It was delicious and we will try another one tomorrow. Then a quick trip to the supermarket for something easy for dinner. We finished the day by watching a pair of seagulls and their three chicks on the roof across from us. Another great day!

    Bela Muxia
    9 kms
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    Traveler

    Glad you have good weather to enjoy this part of your travels. Lovely seeing the two of you together

    6/6/22Reply
    Narelle Campbell

    Love Muxia and Bella Muxia. Go to the bakery in the back street if you have time. You’ll see the queue in the morning.

    6/6/22Reply
    Traveler

    A fabulous day! It is such a treat to be here, and we are having fun exploring, eating, and watching local life! Thanks Narelle great recommendations. Found the bakery and have wine, bread and cheese sorted for dinner in our terrace 🙏🙏😊😊

    6/7/22Reply
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