An expression I heard more than once while on Camino last fall was “The Camino gives you what you need when you need it”. It did seem that way; many times I had been walking and wondered if I had lost the trail, then a short time later the familiar yellow arrow would appear letting me know I was still on path or when I was thirsty and tired, a village with a wonderful café would suddenly appear.
Those of us who have walked and returned home will say things like “Every day is a Camino”, “The Camino continues to give even though you are home” or “The Camino is calling me back”. For me all are true. As you know, I have been called again, I am returning to Spain in mid September. My life has changed drastically on so many levels since my return home. I have gained a new-found insight into who I am and what makes me tick. But that is not the topic for today.
This week a promise I had made to a hotelier while I was on the Camino last year came back to mind. I had not fulfilled this promise and was feeling guilty. While staying in her Casa Rurale, (Las Aguedas in Ventosa, Spain) she and I had a conversation about a blank wall she had in her backyard. I told her I was a mosaic artist and would put a large mural of La Rioja on that wall to fill the space. She and her husband were very interested, they told me I could stay in their Casa Rurale while I worked on the mosaic; they would provide room, board and meals for as long as the mural took to create. I left their Casa Rurale with her email address on a yellow sticky note. I promised to be in touch with a design when I returned to the States. Well, the sticky note remained on top of my desk since my return, in fact it is still there. I never created the mosaic design for them.
Now here comes the part where “the Camino continues to give even though you are home”. I am booked into the same Casa Rurale this year. I was embarrassed to have not kept my word, I figured now was a good time to contact Rocio. I sent her an email asking if she remembered me and questioned if she was still interested in having a mosaic created on the wall. A reply came within a day.
“Hello Arlene, thank you very much for your mail. Of course I remember you, and it´s a pitty you have made the reservation with Booking becouse I could do it directly for you. The wall still the same so I will send you a photo to remenber it. The size is width 7.30cm x height 1.86cm. It is a good news that you will be walking the Camino again. Thank you for remember us. Any thing you need please contact me.”
I promptly replied telling her I had cancelled my reservation with Booking.com and asked her to re-book a room. I’m now busy working on designs to bring or send her before I arrive.
Wouldn’t it be fantastic if I could design and work on a mosaic in the Rioja region of Spain next year? How cool would that be? I’d have a creation of mine in Spain for all the pilgrims to see for years and years to come. Talk about a way to give back to the Camino!