Day 12. Footstep dreams in paradise. Salo

The group is changing all the time, getting bigger and smaller and bigger again. People leave and new people join, people return or promise to return and will in the last days. Every day there are goodbyes and welcomes. Some people skip a day here and there and drive with our transport car, some people just join for a day, but there are still a few people who walked the complete route so far.

Not that it matters we don´t all walk the same distance. It isn´t about who walks most or fastest. The route is made of all our communal footsteps, every walk is just as valuable and is part of the bigger whole.

Today is the first time in 12 days we don't have to get up around 7 or even earlier. We are staying at camping el Paradis where there is a swimming pool and a restaurant. We sleep our way into the morning, we dream of walking. When we wake up and go for a swim we are asked if we want to eat paella. Some questions are easy. When I walk into the restaurant to order a cold beer just before lunch, the two women cooking ask me to come into the kitchen and they proudly show me the paella in process. My Spanish is suddenly fluent. A big pile of the same water creatures we saw swimming in the aquamarine lake we swam in earlier this week is waiting to decorate the beautiful dish.

But first Jordi gives us a talk about cooperatives. I embroider honeycombs on my suit while listening, trying to translate the language I don´t understand into lines and patterns that might catch the meaning. The afternoon flies by. I wouldn't mind hanging around the pool all day but there is some walking to be done still. At 6 we gather, when the day is at its hottest, and walk to the astronomical observatory. 14 kilometers, more than 3 hours, the air is heavy, it is humid.

The sky, which has been clear most days, is covered in clouds now. It is a bad day to look at the stars. We arrive in the dark, accompanied by a dog (another one) who decided to join us somewhere halfway. It start to rain.

Inside the observatory we bump into the sun. It looks like an enormous yellow beach ball. The man who shows us around has a halo of enthusiasm around him. He starts a projection and we are being sucked into galaxies.

He takes us up, opens the roof, the telescope is impressive but can’t show us more than the naked eye can today. I sit outside and stare at the dark shape in the far distance. Montserrat.

We drive back by car. Big hare are caught in the beams of the car lights.El Paradis is wet and dark. We sleep and dream of stars.

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