this is a page for

Daily Archives: August 15, 2017

Behind the Green Door

Kiefer was still holding my hand, squeezing a little too hard, but it was dark and he seemed to know where he was going, so I didn’t complain. “Almost there,” he whispered. “Portuguese wine and cheese biscuits, coming right up.” He turned left abruptly, and I stumbled into one of the crumbling stone walls lining the alley. Something wet and furry brushed against my ankle and I squealed. “It’s just a rat,” he shrugged. “No worries, here’s the door.” I pulled up short in front of a dark, wooden archway. The door itself was hidden in shadow, and dark shutters covered the windows. I’d only been on the Camino for a few days, so I was hardly an expert, but this didn’t look like any hostel I’d seen so far. “Are they open?” I didn’t see any light inside, and I was starting…

There’s No Such Thing as Perfect Timing

Stop waiting for perfection. Step out there. In Vila do Conde, Portugal, on my second morning of walking the Camino de Santiago, I am struck again by the pragmatic faith in this little village. There are no guard rails on the footbridges, no warning signs, no walk/don’t walk signals. I stand stupidly on the sidewalk, longing to cross the busy street to the café I see on the other side. I watch, horrified, as other pedestrians simply step out into the traffic — just throw themselves into mortal danger with no apparent fear. I’m equally amazed when the zooming cars brake for them. Just stop, in the middle of the road, to let them pass. And wave merrily as they speed off again. Not me. I stand on the curb, hyperventilating. I want bedrock assurances that the cars will stop before I put myself in peril. The drivers…