Thoughts from the Camino

25/09/2012
There are a number of books about walking The Camino, or more officially, the Camino de Santiago de Compostela. The Camino had been on ‘my list’ for a number of years.
 

After an inordinate amount of time behind a desk and at the mercy of a computer, common sense took over to leave it all behind…it really is unnatural to be as indoors and as sedentary as our so called modern lives dictate…so, off to Spain where a large number of days spent outside and moving would be welcome elixir for both mind, body and spirit.

Lee and I started our walk in the tradition of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela - from the French side of the Pyrenees at a place called St Jean Pied de Port on the 3rd May 2012 and arrived in Santiago de Compostela on the 30th May 2012. The walk itself is many things to many people, a blindingly obvious statement you may say…for me it was a chance to be physically challenged, to be in the moment, to meet a wide range of people, to get a privileged glimpse into the lives of Spanish locals and to spend some precious time with my significant other, Lee.

It was also a chance to appreciate our able bodies and minds (some people might tackle on this latter) - our two legs, our health and raise some money for ‘No Matter What’ with important support from a large number of people.

What you will find to be commonplace if you happen to read more about or even undertake this amazing walk, will be the many conversations about feet, foot care, footwear, blisters, anti – inflammatory solutions, directions to the nearest Farmacia for foot care treatment…Never have I spent so much money on socks, foot care aids, knee supports…never have I spent so much time soaking my knees and feet in the all too welcome freezing waters of the high Spanish mountains or plains... 

What is also commonplace is the warmth of the Spanish people and the wonderful food and wine we experienced during our walk. What a privilege to have been able to do what we did…

We covered between us and in a total of 21 days, over 980kms. Would I do it again? Yes, and differently…

But…let’s keep this in perspective…we also met people who covered more than twice this distance, walking other Caminos from deep within France, Germany and even one gentleman who walked all the way from Finland and back!   As with all things in life, everything has its own relativity - for me, this walk reminded me I am one very lucky human being in a world where health, shelter, food and two legs to walk on, should not be taken for granted.
Huge thanks to Ian and Di who provided us with the Spot ME satellite technology.

Thank you to all those amazing people who have donated/are still donating to this walk which is raising funds for a Summer School for the Oncology ward at Princess Margaret Hospital, Perth.

So, what next? Well…into planning for 2013’s walking challenge…if you’re interested in joining us, please contact us.

View our photos from the Camino Walk below.

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Waiting at Bayonne for train to St Jean Pied
de Port
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St Jean Pied de Port - Start of The Camino
for us

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Day 1 - Crossing the Pyrenees (28kms)

 
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Pamplona to Puenta de la Reine (22kms)
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21 days later - Santiago de Compostela

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