Rabanal del Camino

We went to Rabanal
It was very small

On the way in
To our chagrin
We saw a flattened frog

We sat for lunch
And there we munched
Before heading to the albergue

After freezing showers
And naps for a few hours
It was time to explore the town

From the winding streets
Rose stone homes so sweet
And roses abundant in display

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Above crumbling, mossy walls
Cool rain threatened to fall
And green expanses grew before our eyes

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A trip to the monastery was in order
Operated by the monks from within the German border:
The Benedictines of St. Ottilien

Fulfilling our theological search
They restored a 12th century Romanesque church:
“La Iglesia de Santa Maria de la Asuncion”

In 2001, the monks were nearly banished by a local mob
For a million euro loan (from Castilla-Leon) was for snobs!
But lets leave the politics for another day…

The church was a beautiful, dimmed space
Where Vespers allowed a glimpse of Grace
And the cantor’s sublime song swayed our hearts

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Discussing Rabanal would not be complete
Without historical significance replete:
Namely the Knights Templar and the maragatos

Early pilgrims once stopped in Rabanal
To avoid the mountains dangerous and tall
And the Templars offered protection (until the 13th century)

The maragatos once inhabited this town
And, as transporters, were trusted all around
On account of their grave and honest dispositions

Thought to be descended from Phoenicians, Iberians, or Berbers,
Successful businessmen the maragatos were
But today, only 4,000 remain

With this information settled in our brains
It was time to satisfy our stomachs’ pain
And dinner at the albergue enticed the weary pilgrims

Macaroni was the obvious choice
When it emerged in a cauldron we rejoiced!
The waitresses were the heroes of the night

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Our stomachs full and heavy,
Exhaustion did sleep on us levy
And was helped by the wifi turning off at ten

The next day we left Rabanal
Our town beloved and small
And the cool rain finally came down

We went to RabanalWe went to Rabanal

By: Katherine Sadaniantz

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