2. Finding the Arrows

Have you seen God in His splendors,
Heard the text that nature renders?
(You’ll never hear it in the family pew.)
The simple things, the true things,
The silent men who do things?
Then listen to the Wild – it’s calling you.

They have cradled you in custom,
They have primed you with their preaching,
They have soaked you in convention through and through;
They have put you in a showcase;
you’re a credit to their teaching,
But can’t you hear the Wild? – it’s calling you.

Let us probe the silent places,
let us seek what luck betide us;
Let us journey to a lonely land I know.
There’s a whisper on the night-wind,
There’s a star agleam to guide us,
And the Wild is calling, calling . . . Let us go.

I am just one of those people that really, really dislikes airports and flying.  It’s sad really as I know it dampens my desire to travel.  I’m not afraid of flying, I just don’t like the process.

At Bordeaux I allowed our very modern world to take hold… checking for every exit, every means of escape… just in case Bordeaux airport was today’s target. I am genuinely  quite ashamed to say that the flight to Marrakesh, that boarded just before ours, simply added to my fear How totally awful is that!?  This modern warfare is making bigots of us all… well me anyway.  This fear only added to my discomfort.

Why do people rush to check in?  There’s  no prize for being first.  There were a couple of ladies behind me, one hell bent on getting ahead.  More tension for me. I stood aside and let her pass. I don’t think the plane will leave without us.

I sat between very nice people who coughed and sniffed throughout the flight.  More fodder for my paranoia and dislike of flying. Is it really a 2 hour flight to Sevilla? As it happens it was only 1.5 hours.

I took a bus into the centre of Sevilla and stepped out into sensory overload.  If I was nervous or tense it slipped away.  I could feel myself smiling, Sevilla is magical.  Chaotic, noisy, busy, loud, hot and totally captivating.

Maggie sent me a text… where are you?  We talked to each other on our mobiles as we both walked around this enormous cathedral trying to find each other… and then we did.  My dear Aussie pilgrim… back in Spain and ready to walk with me to the end of the world.

She walked me back to the apartment and I met Branden… a very lovely Memphis  belle  who will be joining us for 10 days.  I dumped my rucksack and we went in search of food and drink. And then we shopped for hiking poles and then we paid a very special pre-arranged visit to the Aire de Sevilla… Roman baths deep in the centre of the old town and a little piece of relaxing pilgrim heaven.

Hot pools and warm pools and cold pools and salt pools and a very very hot steam room.  I left the girls to their massage and headed back to the Cathedral and a cold drink.  I’m tired but relaxed and content.  I’m ready to start walking… which is just as well as we then spent several hours sightseeing around amazing Sevilla!

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