Hospitality is the name of the Game
There is something to say about hospitality – it is memorable. Bad hospitality can ruin any restaurant’s good name for many years. Even communities of faith are not excluded from this … they will know by your hospitality. Many books have been written on the subject. And yet hospitality is not rocked science.
A Shell of Wine at Irache
It is not hard to image that hospitality were vital on the Camino. Many pilgrims depended on good hearts of the folks in the towns along the way. There were also a few monasteries along the way. The Irache Monastery dates back to 958. This monastery closed in 1985 due to the lack of novitiates. For the little more 1,000 years the monks served the people, the pilgrims. One thing they did was to serve pilgrims wine for strength for the journey … this is wine country after all. Today, there is wine fountain. You can take your class or clam shell and enjoy some wine. There is a plaque on the wall today at the site of the “wine fountain” and it reads: Pilgrim, if you wish to arrive at Santiago full of strength and vitality, have a drink of this great wine and make a toast to happiness.
I stopped to look at the “wine fountain” but did not indulge; 8:30 in the morning was just a little too early for me. One pilgrim did though, his response, “It tastes like vinegar.”
The Café Móvil
Eight kilometers before the rest stop for the day I passed by a Café Móvil – Mobile CaféI. Out in the middle of nowhere this gentleman has set up shop with coffee, and goodies. It was a welcomed pit stop along the way. He was quite friendly. And the caffeine deprived Dewald thoroughly enjoyed his latte, let me tell you.
Iglesia de Santa María de los Arcos XII
I have arrived at Los Arcos. After a quick shower and a quick nap I walked around the small town. I stopped by the local Church Santa María de la Asunción. It was build in the XII century and was embellished in the 16th, 17th, and 18th century. The Church is quite unique because you can see the different styles: Gothic, Baroque, and Classical elements. Just imagine, for the past 900 years this community of believers have showed hospitality to pilgrims.
It is about hospitality
Today I was more aware of hospitality on the Camino than the other days. It extended from the free wine to friendly faces at Santa María. It is true, hospitality goes a long way.
*I walked the Camino de Santiago from September 13 to October 26, 2017. At the time I wrote blog entries; now, a year later I am rewriting the entries as I had time to reflect on the experience.