Santiago de Compostela is not a shoe producing town. It is the resting place of Spain’s patron saint – Santiago, or St. James the Greater. As early as the 10th century, pilgrims from all corners of Europe were embarking on a faith journey to Compostela to ask the powerful saint to intercede on their behalf.
Today pilgrims still walk the Camino de Santiago or the St.James’ Way. In summer 2013 I decided to join them and walked a small portion of the way from Bamberg, Germany, wearing my “Pamplona” espadrilles from La Rioja, which I got from the Montreal-based www.espadrillestore.com.
Even if they looked bad, it still wouldn’t matter.
In the words of the Quebec chansonnier and poet Félix Leclerc:
“Paradise, my friends,
seems not for polished shoes a place.
Hurry to get your shoes dirty, my friend,
if you want to be forgiven in the end.”