Sometime later this morning, as I enter Santiago and approach the Cathedral, the little yellow arrows that have guided me for 500 miles over the last four weeks will suddenly disappear.
It’ll be an interesting moment – after they cease to reassuringly point me the way, I’ll have to start making more of my own decisions about which direction to take next.
They’ve been so well presented that I’ve only taken half a dozen wrong turns, the latest of which was partly caused by the distraction of an alarmingly large wandering Alsatian as I gingerly walked through his territory.
Even on foggy mornings, the little yellow arrows have been there to guide me along the path with calm confidence.
Thank you, Little Yellow Arrows.
I’ll miss you.
After the fractured sleep caused by The Mountainous Snorer of Ribadiso, I was surprised to find myself full of energy and able to contemplate a long walk to Monte do Gozo, which overlooks Santiago from just a few kilometres away.
It was about 30 kilometres away from Ribadiso, but fuelled by two OJs, two bananas and a peach, I covered the distance with some ease.
Monte do Gozo means Mount of Joy and earlier pilgrims would run up the hill for their first sight of Santiago.
I didn’t run up the hill…
Earlier in the day, I had savoured the last few kilometres of the woodland paths, farm fields and iconography of the Way.
The enormous albergue at Monte do Gozo serves 400 Pilgrims, yet did not possess a bar or a restaurant, which was a bit of an unexpected moment.
Happily, a smaller albergue over the hill was part of a museum with a restaurant and I spent the evening happily chatting and sharing Camino experiences with Olivia and Maddy, two young Americans.
Now, it’s time to take the last few steps to Santiago, to finally arrive and then start looking for a new yellow arrow.
Albergue Monte do Gozo
Enormously large, 400 Pilgrims accommodated in about 60 rooms of 6/8 bunks. Blue plastic sheets. Good showers. No food or drink!
Trips, Slips and Falls: 0 (3)
Pineapple Solero Consumption: 1 (9)
Applications of Factor 50: 0 (109)
Filling of Water Bottles: 1 (59)
Wrong turns taken: 1 (6)
Number of times “Buen Camino” was said: About 50
Song Of The Day: Nothing came to mind!