12/12/2011 into Ponferrada


This AM a Canadian pilgrim and I explore the inside of the cathedral in Astorga together. When I look at the altar piece, considered to be a masterpiece of woodworking, tears come forth again. After a few minutes the feeling passes. It feels good to be overwhelmed by beauty.

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Detail

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The pipe organ spreads it’s wings above the choir.
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I climb 2000 feet and am almost a mile high. The temperature is in the 30′s. If I stop riding, I start shivering in minutes. Must keep the muscles working to stay warm.

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THe iron cross at the top of the summit. The origin and meaning of the iron cross has bee lost in the fog of time. A 20 foot high pile of rocks is built up around the base, tossed there by pilgrims like me over the decades.

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The view on the descent.

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Lots of villages on the way, each with it’s own charms.

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I end the day in Ponferrada, which translates literally to iron bridge. The city is named after a bridge that was built for pilgrims in the year 1200. I can’t find it. I think it is rusted away. I’ll look again tomorrow on my way out of town.

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