Santiago de Compostela, to me, was just a place on a map that some acquaintance, now forgotten, mentioned as a wonderful place to visit. And so in 2006 my wife and I, looking for a holiday destination, remembered that advice, and booked a flight to Madrid and onward to Santiago. Thus began our fascination with this very special place. Perhaps it was the pilgrim traffic always in circulation about the town, or the magnificent Cathedral brimming with opportunities for a prayerful moment, or the quaintness of the city and its architecture, or the food and wine, the people, or the spectacular coastline an easy day trip away. Perhaps it was all those things softened and shaped by a week of very pleasant spring weather that set the hook. It was clear that we would return, but the thought of returning on pilgrimage just hadn't gelled. That would come some years later as a consequence of another event similarly unanticipated.
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