Walking along the street with a friend here in Porto, I suddenly greeted a man on a bike with a big “Buen Camino!”, the customary greeting between Camino de Santiago Pilgrims.
The man gave me a big smile back and said ” Thank you. Buen Camino!”.
As we carried on, my friend looked at me in disbelief. “How could you possibly know that that man was cycling the Camino de Santiago?” I laughed. “Come with me”, I said, turned on my heel and walked back towards the pilgrim.
I showed my friend the seashell hanging from the front of the Pilgrim´s bike. “Look. This is why, my friend”. “This is the sign of a Camino Pilgrim”. The Pilgrim was from Germany, as was my friend. They chatted away for a few minutes, as the Pilgrim shared his journey.
As we walked away, my friend said, “Aaah! I see!”. As we made our way past the Porto Cathedral, I said “look – there´s one and another and another”. “The Buen Camino Tribe is everywhere”.
Indeed, Pilgrims are everywhere, especially in Porto, one of the starting places of the Camino de Santiago. Never mind the rucksack or the walking boots. The dead giveaway is always the pilgrim shell, proudly displayed for all to see, usually dangling from a rucksack.
Walk a day, a week or a month of the Camino and you belong to the Buen Camino tribe forever.
There´s a whole Buen Camino tribe from every country, continent, culture and race. Buen Camino!
If you want to join the Buen Camino Tribe, come and join me for a seven-day adventure on the Portuguese Camino de Santiago next summer. The hills are alive to the sound of Buen Camino! Click the link below for details. I hope you join me.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2018. All Rights Reserved.