The “magic of the Camino” is alive and present and was witnessed 3 times last night during dinner at our posada. There were 13 of us, all seated at the same table, and about 15 minutes into the meal, the woman across from me, originally from Honduras but now living in Texas, made the connection with the woman seated right next to her, who was from England. They both realized that they had spent a lot of time walking together on the Camino 3 years ago. The British woman was walking with her husband during their walks the last time, but this year, was walking it alone as she said the walk was too strenuous for her husband. The woman seated next to Susan, who was traveling with the Honduran woman, was also a part of that group from 3 years ago. Of course once they made the connection, there was all sorts of remember whens and affection shown between them. It truly was touching to watch the reunion and hard not to see it as magic on the Camino.
Earlier in the day, Peter, from Austrailia (of course, where else?), who Susan and I had seen day 2 of the Camino but not since, had arrived and we were all thrilled to see each other again as we had often wondered what had happened to him. I was seated next to him at dinner and after the surprise of the 3 women re-uniting, he told me that he also had some Camino magic to share. He asked me if I had seen the rock sign a few days ago that said “Aussie Peter.” I had, and happened to be walking with another Austrailian, who has also weaved her way in and out of our days. Sharon and I saw the large arrow made of rocks that pointed to “Aussie Peter.” Next to that was a big rock with a note underneath it. We both stopped and commented on it, wondering if that “Aussie Peter” would ever actually see his name and retrieve the message that was next to his name and under the rock. Well, he did because he was sitting right next to me and showed it to me! He had met a mother/daughter from Scotland who had written the note and wished him well on his Camino as well as sharing their contact info with him.
There are many messages on the Camino for people and I have always wondered if they really are ever seen. I got my answer tonite.
The 3rd bit of Camino magic that happened around the dinner table last night was when Susan and I recognized the couple on the opposite end of the table as the couple who was seated right next to us in a small Italian restaurant where we ate in Burgos, over a week ago. I thought it was a huge coincidence, but when I said something about sitting next to them at the Italian place, the wife simply said, “Yes, I remember…” Obviously, she didn’t see the magic that I did, so I let it go.
If your eyes and heart are even a little bit open on this journey, there is truly magic to be seen. It’s hard to describe, but easy to feel. As I was beginning to head to our room after dinner, the Honduran woman approached me and gave me a big hug and told me that she was sure our paths would cross again. I’ve got to think she was probably right on that.