We took a couple days to rest in Finisterre. I promised Ally a beach after our walking was done. It’s a really nice place even if it is the ‘end of the world’. We had taken a bus out there on Saturday morning. One thing I will never get used to is traffic in Spain, especially buses. Whether you are trying to cross the road in front of them or riding in one, the whole experience is a bit crazy. There is not a straight road in this whole country I think, and barreling down the road in a gigantic bus, twisting and turning all the way, makes both Ally and I a little nauseous.
The first night we stayed in a small hotel on the main beach where the scallop shells wash up. It was nice, but a good 1.5 km walk to the main part of town. From the town of Finisterre, the Camino (Finisterre Camino) continues to the end of the cape to the lighthouse at the end of the world. In Roman times, people actually thought this was the end of the world as they knew it. The hike up to the lighthouse is a climb, but nothing like we’ve seen. We had had a nice lunch and were rested so we walked out there. It was beautiful. But it was also busy. Pilgrims who finished their walk here, sometimes hike up to the lighthouse to watch the sunset over the Atlantic Ocean and burn their boots or other gear. We didn’t burn anything. In fact, we didn’t take any gear up there just a small daypack, a slight change from the full backpacks we’d been packing.
The lighthouse was nice, and we spent quite a lot of time on the rocks below it. Here we met a mother and son from California who had also completed the Camino together, although they road bikes from Burgos to Leon. This was also my final place to leave a memory or tribute for Mom. I had taken three small pieces of sea glass in the shape of hearts, picked by myself on some beach in Canada, to represent my brother, sister and myself, and our families, and here I threw them off the end of the world. And I asked for healing. For all of us.
After this we made the quick descent back down to the town, then to our hotel where we had a lovely meal. We had already decided to stay another night but wanted something more convenient and closer to town do we booked a different room for the next night – close to the same beach but on the other end.
On Sunday we walked to two beaches in town, and found a great sea glass beach. We had heard about another beach, on the other side of the cape so we walked up the hill, eventually finding the path and spent some time listening and watching the waves crash on the shore. It was very nice. And not as busy as the other beaches.
After a lite lunch we walked the main beach again, although in bare feet and in the water. We literally spent most of the day walking beaches, splashing our toes in salt water. It was a good end to the trip.
Monday morning we boarded a bus back Santiago. We spent a few hours in the cathedral area, some of it looking for gifts for friends, some of it watching pilgrims come in to the main plaza by the cathedral for the first time. There is so much joy and emotion expressed by people when they arrive. The end of a long journey, of pain and injuries, and maybe a new beginning or spiritual awakening. We had even watched one pilgrim propose marriage to his girlfriend in the plaza, to which the crowds cheered.
One last walk around the old town, one last cerveza at a cafe, and off to catch the shuttle to the airport to Paris where we will start our journey home tomorrow morning.