Trodden Paths

As Maike’s visit draws to a close, we took a final walk together this evening, choosing a route we had not yet explored but were very curious about. As always with the two of us, this was not what we had planned on, but were delighted with the sights we encountered. I say sights, because it was so blissfully silent that there were really no sounds to write home about, not even the usual canine cacophony.

We both felt as though we were back on the Camino, our steps the prayers and and every moment taken to stop and admire the details was a tribute to a higher presence. Be it the rocks, roadside flowers, old olive trees, fragrant eucalyptus, or decrepit old apple trees that could probably tell a woeful tale of antiquity, the combination of it all was both symphony and ceremony.

I can feel my strength returning on these hills, as the fresh air and sunshine flush out whatever remaining uncertainties and shadows of the past I harboured within me. I knew moving to Portugal would entail a lot of steep inclines, but I never imagined ending up in a place that would celebrate resilience of mind, body and spirit.

On the way back we came across a spot that was the perfect place to wait for the sun to elegantly set between clouds and hills. We could not have asked for a more fitting way to wrap up Maike’s visit. It was the perfect send-off, combining all the elements that she enjoyed the most.

As Cherry and I fall into our own routine, I look back on the week that flew by all too fast and wonder what the road ahead has in store for me next. Whatever it is, I am ready and willing to take it on!

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