In the book I noticed that there is an option from Triacastelas to visit the Monastery of Samos. This foundation pre-dates the Camino! It seemed an opportunity not to be missed. I began walking with Mike who lives in Virginia . At Samos I found Simon and Claudia having a coffee . They are both walking on to Sarria but stayed for the conducted tour of the Abbey . From our guide I discovered that there was Mass at noon and that I could probably concelebrate.
I headed to my lodgings and put some trousers on and presented myself at the entrance to the Church. When the door of the Abbey was opened a young brother took me to the sacristan who kitted me out with an alb and showed me where the Chasubles were. After that not one of the monks spoke a word to me. Despite the tiny number of monks (less than 10) it was a lovley mass with wonderful organ playing and a great sense of the presence in the majestic abbey. Since no one looked at me after Mass I headed back to find Mike. He and I had lunch together
and I then explored the town in the lovely sunlight. In a small wood there was a 9th century Chapel presumably used by a hermit in the early years of the Monastery.
Later we returned to the Abbey for Vespers and a Mass with a Pilgrim Blessing.
Mike and I were sharing with an elderly US couple and,despite revellers in the street,had a comfortable night.
Galicia is both an ancient part of Spain and also a very poor one. The countryside is incredibly beautiful.In the Autumn light it is wonderful to see it at its best.