No pain, no glory, I read on a t-shirt in Burgos, picturing two feet with lots of blisters and chafing. And when we arrived at the square in front of the Cathedral of Santiago, we saw many who had made sure they had their honor intact. Thousands wander the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela each year and even though you do not get blisters or other physical pain, It can be quit a struggle. The landscape sure is beautiful but it is capricious. Cold air blows almost nine months a year and the heat of the plains can be unbearable, but this is a part of experiencing the glory.
If you have walked the whole way from Le Puy (France), I can understand the feeling of victory but also sadness when you arrive and see the beautiful cathedral.
Your long journey is over, and if you didn’t get to feel the pain you will have no glory, and then your long walk is in vain. Still you have met some new friends, and after all Santiago in the stardust, is really something to strive for.
In our journey toward salvation, we have not experienced pain in any way. We realize, therefore, that our salvation lies in all the good food and drink we have been served on our way to Santiago. And with all the restaurants and bars in the streets around the cathedral, I can not conclude otherwise than that Santiago has to be experienced as heaven even though you are not a pilgrim.