SMC Guest Post: Camino de Santiago Cultural Exploration Course with Alejandro
The following is a guest post from Alejandro, a Spanish teacher at SMC, detailing his "El Camino de Santiago" CE class:
In weeks one and two, about 25 participants recreated the Camino de Santiago in the Spanish Academy. “El Camino” is perhaps one of the most important pilgrimages in the Western world.
Each year, thousands of pilgrims gather at "El Camino" to travel a predetermined distance to culminate in Santiago de Compostela , one of the European cities located more to the west; According to pre-Roman mythology, that place was near "Finisterre", that is, the end of the world.
Pilgrims have a common goal, to walk or bike for hundreds of miles to "greet" or "embrace" Santiago, the apostle (St. James, in English) .
For a week, our participants learned the most important aspects of the Camino: How to prepare their luggage, where to sleep (albergues/shelters), what kind of shoes to use, etc. They also watched the movie "The Way," a beautiful example of this experience. Finally, all the participants walked for an hour, simulating “El Camino de Santiago”, following the very famous yellow arrows and finishing in "The Cathedral" of Santiago.
This workshop is purely cultural, but we had the possibility to have some hands-on activities, such as the elaboration of the famous Santiago cake, a delicious dessert very common in Galicia and that serves for the pilgrims to take "sweet" memories home.
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