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.