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1. Preface
Mr. Masaaki Sakuma is a friend of mine since I was a member in the AA-net circle in Urayasu City around 10 years ago.
This is his couple, Masaaki and Fumiko-san.
June 2014, Dolomiti, Italy

Mr. Sakuma, I call him Masa from now, is 72 years old, 4 years younger than me. He lives in the same town with me, Urayasu City, Chiba Prefecture, enjoying hiking both domestic and overseas with his wife Fumiko-san, besides contributing to our community as a member of arbitration board.

When I informed him of my recent trip to my hometown in Nanki-Kumano District which is famous for Kumano-Kodo or Kumano Ancient Pilgrimage Routes, he replied and referred to his pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, this June.
By my request, he came over and talked about his pilgrimage this time with a lot of documents.

This is my first time to listen to a long pilgrimage by one's own plan, and what's more, overseas.
I was impressed so deeply with the details of his talk and documents that I decided to ruminate his pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela and then finally to the view point of the Atlantic Ocean (Camino de Santiago of his own), with the help of his documents and photos.
Now the outline of Masa's Camino de Santiago 2016.

The Camino de Santiago is the pilgrimage to the shrine of the apostle St. James the Great in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, north-western Spain.
There are now the following 20 routes of Camino de Santiago according to caminoway.com.

French Way Portuguese Coastal
Portuguese Way Northern Way
English Way Finisterre Way
Lighthouse Way Fishermen's Trail
Camino de Invierno Le Puy Way
Original Way Via de la Plata
Arles Way Camino Catalan
Geneva Way Cluny Way
Paris & Tours Way Vezelay Way
Mont Saint Michel Way Coach Trips

Masa walked along the French Way (Camino Frances), the most popular among them to visit the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, and then extended his way to Muxia along the Finisterre Way (Camino Fisterra) to have a view of the Atlantic Ocean. Total distance was 904.5 km spending 30 days.

French Way
Finisterre Way

In an attempt to start the pilgrimage on May 25 from Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, France, he left Narita Airport by AF 275 at 11:00 on Monday, May 23, and landed at Paris at 16:15 local time the same day.
He stayed at a hotel in Montparnasse that night.

The next morning he headed for the starting point Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port by TGV train, and arrived there late at night. While in the train, he was about to have a hard time because of the delay by some fatal accident. He had a kindness from a gentleman and a lady. They explained what happened then and how to spend the idle time in slow and steady English to let him understand. So, Masa felt at ease thanks to them and got to the destination at 17:12.

He stayed at an albergue with dinner and breakfast there.
- - - - -

The following table shows Masa's pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela, and then to Muxia.
From the next chapter, I will pick up where and how he walked for 30 days from his detailed diary, with what he encountered and what impressed him on the way.

date destination of the day distance
1st, Wed.
May 25
From Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
To Roncesvalles
25.0 km
2nd, Thu.
May 26
To Larrasoana 27.0 km
3rd, Fri.
May 27
To Zariquiegui 27.1 km
4th, Sat.
May 28
To Villatuerta 31.0 km
5th, Sun.
May 29
To Torres del Rio 32.8 km
6th, Mon,
May 30
To Navarrete 33.3 km
7th, Tue,
May 31
To Santo Domingo de la Calzada 38.4 km
8th, Wed.
June 1
To Villafranca Montes de Oca 34.8 km
9th, Thu,
June 2
To Brugos 39.7 km
10th, Fri.
June 3
To Hontanas 31.8 km
11th, Sat.
June 4
To Fromista 34.6 km
12th, Sun.
June 5
To Calzadilla de la Cueza 37.6 km
13th, Mon.
June 6
To Bercianos del Real Camino 30.8 km
14th, Tue.
June 7
To Villarente 32.8 km
15th, Wed.
June 8
To Villadangos del Paramo 34.2 km
16th, Thu.
June 9
To Murias de Rechivaldo 32.7 km
17th, Fri.
June 10
To Riego de Ambros 34.9 km
18th, Sat.
June 11
To Villafranca del Bierzo 36.6 km
19th, Sun.
June 12
Hospital de la Condesa 35.6 km
20th, Mon.
June 13
To Samos 24.5 km
21th, Tue.
June 14
To Portomarin 34.6 km
22th, Wed.
June 15
To Mato-Casanova 30.6 km
23th, Thu.
June 16
To O Pedruzo 42.1 km
24th, Fri.
June 17
To Santiago de Compostela 20.1 km
782.7 km
(subtotal)
25th, Sat.
June 18
Walking in
Santiago de Compostela
26th, Sun.
June 19
To Negreira 22.4 km
27th, Mon.
June 20
To Olveiroa 33.1 km
28th, Tue.
June 21
To Cee 18.3 km
29th, Wed.
June 22
To Fisterra 20.0 km
30th, Thu.
June 23
To Muxia 28.0 km
904.5 km
(total)
Before this pilgrimage, Masa had a careful preparation as follows.
1. Information collection -- read journals of experience and guidebooks
2. Make a road map with an itinerary (30 days + 3 alternative days = 33 days in total)
3. Join the meetings of "Asociacion de Amigos del Camino de Santiago en Japon"
Get the guidebook of Camino de Santiago by the association and the book "John Brierley's Camino de Santiago"
4. Prepare a budget
5. Open a bank account for Euro
6. Check of the equipment -- up to 10kg with the backpack
7. Advance training, work-up of the new shoes
8. Make transportation arrangements to and from the pilgrimage
9. Make sure of the means of communication during the pilgrimage to Docomo

- - - - -
Re: Albergue

Masa stayed in albergues through his Camino de Santiago for 30 days. Let me explain what an albergue is.
"Albergue" is a Spanish word of "a lodging for pilgrims".
It consists of two types.
One is Pubrico, managed by a local government, a church, a monastery or a covent.
Another is Privado, managed by a local group or privately.
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