We stopped at a cafe this morning for everyone to meet up. Their small dining room had the signatures and notes from many pilgrims before. It was so cool. I signed my name on the wall (in the second picture).
After the stop, we all travelled together to a school where Abel knows the teacher. Each time big groups of pilgrims come by, all the little kids yell, "peregrinos! peregrinos!" It was so cute. We each said our name and where we are from in the language we speak. There were 5 countries represented (Ireland, Portugal, Italy, Germany, and United States). Then we sang "Let It Go" from Frozen in English and German. It was so much fun. After that, the little kids sang us a song that names all the colors. Adorable. The teacher really stresses international learning and asked us to send post cards so that he can add them to the collection on the wall.
I walked alone to Pontecessures and it was good to have time to myself on the Camino. (Everyone should go on the Camino. And also, everyone should spend some time alone on the Camino.) I can't even describe how it feels.
Once we got here, we decided to serve American food for dinner tonight...Philly cheesesteaks, caesar salad, and no-bake cookies. The Italians also made pasta carbonara. We have had a constant trend of having WAY too much food but it's always so delicious. However before we ate the dinner, we all held hands and prayed together. I think there was 25 of us all at one big long table. Abel explained in Italian (and then English) why we pray and why we are thankful. Then each of us went around and said thanks for what we were thankful for in our own language. It was such an incredible time. Abel finished in prayer and when we all looked up, there were multiple people with tears in their eyes. It was powerful. Certainly one of my favorite dinners EVER. ((I don't have many pictures from tonight because there wasn't a moment that I wanted to leave and go grab my phone. haha))
After dinner, we spent time together outside singing, laughing, and playing UNO, as always. We will have a normal morning tomorrow...leave around 6 and hopefully arrive in Santiago around 2!! Tomorrow we arrive! It will certainly be sad because we have made such close friends this time. It will be much different than my last Santiago experience. But this is one instance where technology makes these things so much easier. The Italians have had a GoPro recording a ton of our time together and it's going to be hilarious to watch later. Either way, we are doing what we came here to do! Thank you so much for your prayers and love. It's immeasurable.
Strength to get through one last day!
Conversations to be fruitful.
A great time of celebration together in Santiago.