Bendiciónes Pequeñas

(inspired by and with permission from Cathy Birdsong Dutchak at


To be brought a small bowl

Of peanuts

Cacahuates—do I recall that rightly?

In a courtyard of an albergue

To accompany the glass of wine I’ve ordered

In the north of Spain

Somewhere along the pilgrim trail

On the other side of Spain, Hemingway might be


With or without companions

I hope with

He could have done with more company than

Cats (apologies to the six-toe-to-a-paw friends who

still retain his houses in the Keys,

on Cuba)


I’m not sure I could take the path

Maybe for a while

But I could sit there inside a breeze

Of northern Spain

Contemplate the pilgrimage

The pilgrims of all kinds


Have a sip

Reach for the bowl

Taste and see


C L Couch



(on the pilgrim trail to Campostela)

Option to Valverde de la Virgen (3.4 km)

Each day on the Camino, you don’t know what you’ll encounter as you walk in the footsteps of thousands of pilgrims. Sometimes you find pleasant surprises such as the oasis of my albergue, La Casa del Camino: Albergue de Peregrinos.

Though it sits along a busy road, it was a beautiful spot with couches and comfy chairs, lounge chairs, hammocks, and beds on the lawn for lounging.   There were areas under canopies and umbrellas and a line of square foot baths, and the most welcoming owners you could ever meet. When I arrived, they presented me with a glass of cold fresh orange juice as they checked me in.

Bowls of apples sat on tables, flower boxes and hanging baskets dotted the space around an above-ground swimming pool (with no water), gardens bloomed, and Buddhas reclined and sat, looking serene.

I sat outside having a glass of wine and one of the owners brought me a small bowl of peanuts.

When I have happened upon places such as these, I felt so joyful and grateful for the peaceful and refreshing surroundings.

This place rates up with a number of top albergues along the Camino.  There are fair shares of bad and mediocre ones.

(my emphasis)


Photo by Les routes sans fin(s) on Unsplash

Camino de Santiago, Spain

Perspectives on hills, pilgrims on the way. /// Le sommet d’une colline dévoile parfois une perspective hors du temps.