From the Codec club in Madrid, they send us the chronicle of the days spent in Pallerols from August 26 to 31, 2020.
They have asked us, but it is difficult to write a summary about an experience like the one lived during these days in the Pyrenees; if it already was for those who did it at the time with Saint Josemaría, in conditions quite worse than ours, what are we going to count a group of 10 young people from 3rd and 4th grade, with 4 older ones to support them.
What has been very clear to us, and all the attendees underline it (Tomás, Mike, Lucas, Diego, Javi, Nico, Pedro, Jorge, Luis, Manu, Pablo, Iñaki, Alfonso and Fr. Manuel) is that to understand a little of what happened in 1937, you have to be here; live it a bit (it will never be the same): see the places, climb the mountains, celebrate Mass in the same places, fall on the slopes, get pricked by brambles ... Thus, you place yourself much better, at least that has happened to us despite to read the books or watch the videos that try to explain it, before coming.
We were very surprised by the House of the Corb, hidden from prying eyes, but very strategically located. During various stages of the tour, we read written testimonials in which they explained the experience of each place, and that helped us more to get on stage. We live a great example in the emotional Mass of the Ribalera, accompanied by the songs of the birds and a unique natural altarpiece.
Certainly we tried to follow the whole redesigned route, but as it was quite hot, we went directly down to the Oliana Reservoir to cool off, as the climb to the Aubenç mountain would seem expensive.
The second day we left from the Masies de Nargó, to climb the two mountains (Comalavall and Santa Fe), passing through Fenollet. Right now there are more buildings, and the sheds and stables have been converted into rural houses, but several of the episodes of nervousness and tension are perfectly understood, both when climbing the slopes, as when approaching the towns.
On the third day we took the opportunity to celebrate Mass in the "Cabaña de San Rafael"; although it is a reconstruction, it perfectly transmits the sensations that could be perceived at the time. Inside we discovered a small bat, which reminded us of the continuous interaction of nature every day with the protagonists of our history.
The stages from Aravell to Andorra are some of the most beautiful, and we took photos of the green landscapes and the mountain ranges. You always had to be attentive, from the descent to the River of Civís, until the arrival in Sant Julià de Lòria, and not stop looking well where to step, as there were some stones that were moving. Needless to say, the care in the Cabra Morta gully, especially for those who suffer from dizziness; we had no problems, but we are from Codec ...
Some of the sections were in worse condition, either due to lack of time to maintain the route due to the Covid issue, or due to the strong storms that have raged in recent days and knocked down several trees. But always, thanks to the advice of our valued volunteer guide, Octavio Rico, we better decide which stages to carry out, starting and ending points, meeting places for refreshments, suitable detours to take ... And that is one of the most important advantages of this expedition: that you have great people from day one, who help you position yourself and organize everything in the best possible way.
So, thank you very much Ramon and Octavio for attending us "on site". Thank you Jordi and the entire Association for wanting to keep such a valuable experiential memory of the "Paso de los Pirineos". Thank you for offering us such cozy and well-equipped facilities: we have had a home that is hard to forget, and even more so with the Treasure that it keeps well kept in its charming Romanesque church: the Mother of God of "Roser de Pallerols".
We will be back for sure. Thanks for everything and see you soon!