Hi There João, Ana and Margarida,
We thought it’d be nice to send you an update to let you know how’ve been since we left Lisbon and Casa Velha. I, Wouter am still amazed about how our adventure evolved since we met your loving hospitality. And of course for Anke this is completely the same. The caminho wouldn’t have been the same if we wouldn’t have found you.
The first days we made small distances. For Anke it was still pretty hard, still recovering from her injury. Also for me the caminho came with the challenge of getting used to the walking and the weight again. We camped in the suburbs of Lisbon and were kindly helped towards the bombeiros when the both of us collapsed about 1km before arriving to our destination on side of the road. Slow but steady we regained our strength. And before we knew it our days were filled with walking instead of fighting the injury, the weight etc.. The struggle lost its effect in our growing faith and trust in the Unisverse, God, Love or whatever you name it.
Miracles happen daily. At least in our experience. When sitting on a bench resting our legs and catching some late morning sunbeams for a brake, a friendly woman surprised us with tea, lemon cake and a stamp in our credential. We really enjoyed this gesture of hospitality. This event was the start of a day full of people giving us oranges, breads etc.. For me it marked the point where living faith, trust and graditude came to physical reality. It was beautyful.
Where there’s high peaks we also found deep lows. As mentioned before, starting the caminho came with some challenges. There were moments in which either Anke or I completely ran out of fuel. For me this generally means, take a rest, face myself and my fears. So that’s what I do. For Anke it usually means the same. Emotions and tears are well presented in our flow. Admitting to this, mostly results in a reconnection to lives’ flow which I can only describe as magic. The loving eyes of a woman in a cafe for example when Anke let her tears flow regarding the ankle, homesickness and the determination to walk the caminho by herself really made our hearts melt again. “é vida” is what she said when reaching over to hand us some napkins.
This very same day we managed to walk a distance without any trouble, pains etc.. Part of the reason might be our focus on ourselves the focus on the universal healing energy which surrounds us all. The same source of energy which helped us a day before when we found a river unable to cross due of the rain. Two friendly drivers helped us to cover the 17 kms extra we otherwise had to walk along a busy road.
Waving at a Dutch licenseplate took us to find a place to sleep with a very warm Portugese-Dutch couple south of Coimbra. And an afternoon brake didn’t pass by unnoticed. We got to receive a guided tour in Cucjães, seeing the local museum and one of it’s churches. When both farewell and evening were getting closer, we were very happy to receive the hospitality of this friendly family.
After having reached Coimbra also the faith in our capabilities had grown. By now we knew we could reach Porto before our appointment with Margarida at Nascentes de Luz. We kept on walking. And our friend the sun managed to grow some colour to our face, arms and legs.
As you allready know, we’re walking the caminho at our own pace and we’re very happy to give a hand where we can. This resulted in a very rewarding week at Casa Velha. Despite of the weatherforecast we managed to have enough dry moments. Workinghours were filled, pruning the olivetrees, organizing a shed and folding some booklets. Besides work we also managed to relax a lot. Time was filled with drawing, writing and reading. All we experienced helped the growing awereness in Anke for her socalled calling; the importance of food. Food in both the physical and spiritual way. Everything that feeds you. Muito Obrigado, once again for this inpsiring week full of warmth, graditude and love.
In Porto we got to enjoy the hospitality of Miguel. He himself went out for the weekend, leaving us the keys to his appartment. The four days we spent there were another very welcome gift, which we were very willing to receive. We did some sightseeing and went to the Bolhao market. We cooked some meals and baked some breads. We enjoyed the peace and the rest of not having to pack up and go on a daily basis. Slowly I lost energy until Anke asked me if worries were taking over. In that moment I found fear concerning generating an income, and insecurities about what I was doing was taking over. Seeing and accepting this marked a turningpoint. Soon I was filled with energy and joy and ready for the next project; Nascentes de luz.
Where we are now, looking out of the window I see a sky filled with clouds, mostly friendly clouds. The pink glow of the setting sun is slowly fading away. Darkness will soon fall. Also I see a fig tree. Wow – We love figs. Anke is out for yoga with Antonia. And I am home alone. The days filled with work, visits and sightseeing fly by. We helped clearing a part of the garden and on a rainy day we were occupied in the kitchen, giving a hand with all sorts of things and baking bread. With the help of Antonia and Mariane we manage to communicate. When they’re not around it’s signal language, patience and a slight growing understanding in Portugese which helps us to understand one another. Here we feel that language doesn’t make a difference to understand one another. On the other hand we realy which to be able to communicate. So we can share stories, get to know and learn from one another. Even dough the language comes with some difficulties, we feel the unspoken and universal language which connects us on a deeper level. We feel the love of Nascentes de Luz and everybody who’s involved.