Booked it Danno!

I am so excited I can hardly contain myself!   If I’m dreaming, please do not pinch me.

I have been thinking about walking the Camino de Santiago for a while now.  But, in my heart, I knew I was way past that stage in my life where I wanted to walk all day and then sleep on the ground or in a hostel with the smelly, partying masses of young folk. Not to mention carrying all my belongings on my back. Don’t get me wrong – I love young people.  I used to be one.  Truly, some of my best friends are young.  And, I still like a good party!   I do not think of myself as old and crotchety, no matter what my kids might tell you.  But, when it comes to SLEEP.  Now that’s a different matter entirely.  Let it be known here that I am not nice (and might even be considered cranky if not downright crotchety) when I don’t get my full eight hours – preferably in comfort and relative silence.  So, I wasn’t sure how to make this particular dream a reality.  It was definitely a conundrum.

I firmly believe that there is always a way and a brilliant solution came to me in the form of an article written by a woman who had completed what I like to call the “relatively civilized, not too hard but still challenging, with support if and when you need it” version of walking the Camino.   Marly Tours was our answer!  This discovery made it all seem do-able.  All we needed was a little time, a moderate amount of money and good walking shoes.  As it turned out, I mentioned our idea to a few friends and now we are a party of six.  Hubs, me, my sis and three women friends.  It’s a big year too – my 65th birthday, my sister’s “something that ends in a zero” birthday, hubs and my 10th anniversary.  Definitely a year worth marking in a big way.  We’ll  walk about 10-12 miles a day at our own pace  and meet up along the way. Then we’ll gather together every evening for wine, dinner and story-telling before bed.  We’ll be a small group of no more than 14 Pilgrims + our Marly “wranglers” who will make sure we don’t get lost, carry our luggage, provide snacks, first aid and sag wagon support if needed.

So… we’re off.  Well not until next September.  Exactly twelve months from this week.    Call me a light weight, call me soft, call me old, but do not call me between September 17 and 24, because I won’t be home.  I’ll be in Spain, crossing one more item off my bucket list – walking at least a small portion of the Camino de Santiago.

Staying in small hotels like this…Sleeping in a comfy bed like this…Walking along roads and paths like this…Now, I just need to find a home exchange so we can stay an extra week to explore the rest of Spain.  I’m working on that too.


13 thoughts on “Booked it Danno!

  1. How very exciting for you all. I am extremely jealous! I have been thinking of doing that walk ever since I read Jane Christmas memoir “What the Psychic Told The Pilgrim”. You might consider reading it before you go!

    • Thank you Astra. I have been looking for a few good books to read about the camino and different experiences. I will certainly get this one. Thanks for the recommendation.

  2. How very cool! I’ve read a bunch of books written by people who’ve walked the entire Camino – some are better reads than others. (So far, I’ve chosen to concentrate on books written in the last 10-15 years so as to get a more modern perspective on the actual walk, and by those authors who are a little older than the twenty-something backpacker – but I’m running out of books to read!) What the Psychic Told… is a fun read – definitely read that one! Travels with My Donkey is a hoot (written by a very funny Brit who decides to walk the Camino with a donkey) and I’m Off Then, written by a German comedian are two of the funniest books ever, even for people who aren’t planning on walking it. The Camino Will Provide is a $3 Kindle book – I enjoyed it as well. One of the more interesting I’ve read is a book written by an Aussie who was a diplomat to Cambodia and Poland during his working career. He took the route from Granada, Spain, in the south all the way to Santiago in the north, 1200 kilometers, 400 more than the Camino Francis. His book is titled Walking the Camino. The Year We Seized the Day is the story of two people who walked together but didn’t know each other very well before they started. They write in a “back and forth” style where one does one chapter, the other the next chapter. Definitely watch the movie The Way with Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez – you can rent it from Redbox. I just downloaded their book, Along the Way, which is the history of the Estevez family and the making of The Way; not really a Camino book in the sense of a travel narrative. There are many more books than these (these were just some of my faves!), along with travel tips books, that can occupy your time from now till next year 🙂 Enjoy!

    • Wow. thank you Lois for all of the great reading reference. Some I knew about and several I did not. I have seen The Way but now need to see it again. I loved the premise and want to take a second look at the scenery. I am very excited. It always works for me to have a goal. This is a good one. Les and I are out walking every weekend which is a very good thing. Only 6 or 7 miles each time, but it’s cheap healthy entertainment and we’re having fun. And – we always eat someplace. Will walk for food. I am going to explore the corn maze. I loved your blog!

      • Try watching The Way with the commentary from Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez – it’ll give you another perspective! Rock on! Or should I say Walk on!

      • Thanks Lois. You are always such a wealth of great information. I know a couple of people have already ordered some of the books you recommended. Me included. Reading the beginning of What the Psychic Told the Pilgrim and I am glad I am taking the “soft” route.

    • Thanks for stopping by the blog and leaving a comment. Please circle back and let us know how your Camino experience was. Buen Camino!

    • Hi Suzanne, I read your blog post on the Manly walk. That sounded amazing and challenging. I love the idea of walking and stopping to eat and drink and look at history along the way. Happy walking.

    • I think it will be a great experience. I definitely have to admit we’re taking the easy route and I am not on a Pilgrimage but the walk will be a fun challenge and I’m hoping for interesting countryside and new adventures.

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