28 May 2017

Buen Camino, Peregrinos

by Andrew

This will be difficult to write. I feel that I have so much to say with regards to these peregrinos,—of which I, myself, am one too, to be true—but it's all jumbled and un-ordered, what I want to say. And I am trying to be a better person, not to be so negative and mean and rude—sarcastic I decided I'd try to be instead. But sarcasm requires a bit of creativity. And I've not worked-out in my head yet what to even write about in this post, under this title, about the peregrinos. Only, I must write. To make it look I'm doing something important at the cafe, I must write.

I've had already 2 cafés, and that's €1,60, and that's the most I'll spend. And I've been here 2 hours about now too. And I've been in here, in this particular cafe, every day since I've been in Portugal besides only maybe one or 2 nights I think. So they are sick of me I'm sure. I'm dirty and I stink. Or, I think I stink. I probably stink. But I've become so used to it that I smell nothing. But the same people do come too every night to the cafe. So I'm not chasing-away any customers, I don't think.

But it's 22:00, and according to the phone, there's an 80 percent chance of rain between 22:00 and 23:00, and then no rain is forecasted again till morning. And I am still wet from the storm I got caught in nearly 3 hours ago. And I do not want to be soaked again just before I should be going to sleep, which is terribly uncomfortable—and the sand.

So I must write about these damn peregrinos—of which I am one too unfortuately. But my pilgrimage is finished. And I am finished walking for now. And I am only watching them walk now, these other peregrinos.

And watching them all walk-by, I find myself constantly with one question I want to ask them. Why do you carry such a big bag? Will you tell me?

I would reply, if asked that, that I live out of my bag. All I own is in my bag. Every day I use what's in my bag. I carry my shelter in my bag, and extra clothes mostly, and food, or how to cook food, and a few items for hygiene, soap and toothpaste. I wish it was smaller, my bag. But I need every bit of what's in it, to survive.

And I suppose, that these other peregrinos would say the same thing nearly. I see sleeping-pads and sleeping-bags hanging from their bags. They have tents.

But what I do not see is any other peregrino—ever—out here—sleeping, or even just generally out passed dark. I am out here. I sleep outside. I live outside. I would know if you are out here too—so like a dog I am—but a nice dog, I don't even bark, only observe.

So why are you carrying all that stuff? Why is your bag so big? You are not out here. My bag is big too, though it is even smaller than yours. But I am out here. You pay to not be out here, to be inside. You have money. I don't. Why bother to carry all the stuff to survive outside, but pay to stay inside?

You look silly honestly. And especially to me you look silly. So I just smile stupidly and nod back blankly every time you pass, "buen camino." And these middle-aged white women—for the most part—go tottering-on to the next hotel with their big bags. It's silly, truly.

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