There is a thoroughness and sense of duty here that doesn’t stop to amaze me. The ‘helpers’ had breakfast at 4 am this morning to allow them to have an early service at the Grotto before waking up those requiring their help at 5 am to have breakfast at 6.30 am followed by mass, shipping of all material and bags to the train, and making sure that all travellers would be on the train by 10:15 am. To everybody else, this would have been a full day’s work. For them it was just the start of the long journey back home.

Tonight, we’re on the train passing through France and Switzerland back to Germany, via Freiburg up along the Rhine Valley towards Cologne and Düsseldorf where we will catch a flight back home to Dublin tomorrow evening.

This time tomorrow night, we’ll be in Dublin after more than five weeks in Pforzheim and Lourdes. It’ll be different.