Camino de Santiago
Our 300 mile walk along the Camino was one of the best experiences of my life. If you divide the Camino into five 100 mile segments, we did segments 1, 3, and 5. My photo album below of Camino de Santiago contains photos and comments about our journey along The Way. The maps in the book are from John Brierley’s book, A Pilgrim’s Guide to the Camino de Santiago, which I highly recommend. The online Camino Forum is an extremely valuable planning tool.
I learned some important lessons during the journey that apply to all aspects of life:
- Each day we wake up on the same path, sometimes walking along with the same people and some days with new people, but always with the same flow of great joy and deep heartache and everything in between. We met a lot of people along the way and some were struggling with some serious issues in their lives. I learned from hearing their stories to try to appreciate each moment of my life even the hard ones, they are a gift.
- People are kind. “Kindness, pass it on” was something we felt everyday along the trail.
- As we became stronger, the “stuff” we were carrying on our backs (and in our thoughts) became lighter (both literally and metaphorically).
- Anything is possible one small step at a time. Walking 300 miles was a one step at a time adventure;sometimes out of desperation I would count the last 2000 steps of an 18 or 19 mile walk and my counting was usually spot on for enduring the last mile, step by step we made our way to the next town and across a country. So, if you have something in your life that you want to change, take a small step today, you will be one step closer to where you want to be.
My packing essentials: gloves (you will be so happy to have warm hands), walking poles (especially for the first day – we had snow and lots of mud in April), poncho that covers you and your pack (a nice poncho cocoon actually makes walking in the rain pleasant), bandaids, phone (make sure to turn it off when you are not using it, so the battery is not dead when you most need it to book a room or find a map), most phones have flashlights, quick dry clothing, a scarf (I used mine for multiple tasks including as a sling to ease my aching arms and shoulders), sleeping sack, and a small towel.