Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Travel

On the Camino de Santiago, Day 27: In a brief brush with danger, a pilgrim comes to the aid of a fellow traveler

Day 27 (Saturday, July 29): O’Cebreiro to Samos: 31.2 km, 8.5 hours. Total for Days 1-27 = 652 km (405 miles)

Today was a heroic day for me. I was walking alone along a barbed-wire-lined trail with farmland on both sides. I was enjoying the expansive view when I sensed someone’s presence nearby. Confused because I was the only one on the trail, I looked around and realized someone was walking on the other side of the barbed wire.

Moments later, I heard a deep, booming woofing and a squeal-like yipping and saw two dogs running towards the pilgrim; the small dog under the wire and into the property and the other up the trail in my direction. Panicked, the pilgrim - who spoke only Italian - yelled to me "bastone, bastone." I quickly handed him my stick, which left me alone on the trail with the giant dog and no stick. But I wasn’t the one on his property so he shouldn’t take issue with me.

The terrified pilgrim stood there frozen, staring at the small dog, and I stood there staring at the large dog as three pilgrims passed. "You should not be there. Go back to the street and go around," one yelled to the trespassing pilgrim as they walked by.

An older woman walked out of the house at the edge of the property and whistled for her two dogs. "Perdóname, perdóname" the pilgrim yelled to the woman. The small dog hesitated, but ran towards his owner. The large dog sniffed me and let me rub its head, and casually walked down the hill.

The still-frightened pilgrim moved quickly to climb over the barbed wire, thankfully without injury. He immediately wrapped his arm around mine, thanking me profusely and rapidly patting his heart. We walked together, arm in arm, until we got to the bottom of the hill and saw the two dogs lounging in what seemed to be their spots. We laughed and continued walking. He offered to buy me a beer, but I declined as I wanted to go quite a bit further and I knew a beer would only slow me down.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

I woke up early to watch the sunrise, but instead walked in light rain for an hour.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Pilgrim statue in the fog.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Photos, rocks and notes left at the statue’s feet.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

I ducked into a cafe to wait out the rain for an hour. I walked outside to the pungent aroma of wet "caca de vaca."

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Blue skies behind the clouds.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Another cafe packed with pilgrims and their colorful backpacks.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Cheese, made in this village, with honey and bread.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

I stepped off the trail as this man and dozens of cows walked by me.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

A familiar view that never gets old.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

Walking alone means you have to ask others to take your photo.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

The climb up yesterday was brutal. I can’t imagine doing it on bike. I got lucky to catch this guy zooming past me. Today was a fun day for cyclists.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

My first view of the monastery in Samos.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

There are only a handful of monks living in this huge monastery.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

The view from my bunk in the monastery.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

A quiet dinner by the river.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

The backside of my Camino passport, after 27 days.

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi – Special to the Times

The stamp for Albergue del Monasterio de Samos

Kelly Osborne-Rozgonyi, 29, of St. Petersburg, FL., is a teacher at Country Day School in Largo, FL. She is currently in Europe walking the 500-mile Camino De Santiago. She is sending the Times a daily blog post about her solo journey, which is expected to last 33 days, ending on August 4, 2017. You can e-mail Kelly at [email protected], though you might not hear back until after she returns.

Read the post for Day 28 of Kelly’s Camino.

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