I wonder if there if something that for many of us we do not get from our daily life. I have met and talked to many people who have walked the Camino Frances more than once. Walking the Camino Frances is a fairly big commitment in the way of time and money.
I got thinking on this yesterday while out hill walking in the Wicklow Hills. I notice a Santiago de Compostela badge attached to one of the walkers back packs. I asked, as I have a tendency to do.
They were telling me that they had just come back last week from walking the last 112km from Sarria to Santiago – they really enjoyed it and are now planning on the full Camino Frances next year from St Jean. This is easy to understand, you get a taste of something, you like it and you want the full three course meal.
But the others like me who want to go back time and again…
The last time I walked the Camino people would ask why, why again? And do you know I had no real answer, I just wanted to. I am still not sure myself, I just had that yearning inside me to go walking again.
That yearning is once again growing inside of me. But I now find myself in quite a different position in life. It has become much harder to take one month off and just disappear, leave the phone and email behind for a whole month – very appealing but somewhat impractical now.
To get over this problem I have started considering cycling the Camino Frances next year – 2010. From what I have read cycling the Camino is much more solitary experience than walking, less companionship of the same group a you travel along. I wonder how I would be with this as I really like people and good conversations.
This helps me understand how people end up doing the same things over and over – if you like something why change it? However earlier this year I decided to change the way I did a lot of things. A small example: I would go to the same restaurants all the time and eat the same food over and over – I knew what I liked. So I stoped doing that and started eating in new places and when I was in the old places I would have something different from the menu – I found lots more that I liked.
Change can be good, sometimes I just get into those habits because I know what I like – but I have only one life and I often think that doing more might be better for me. This reminds me of a quote I have sitting above my desk
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did – Mark Twain.
I love hiking. From the Camino de Santiago to the West Highland Way in Scotland or simply a great day hike on the weekend. Hiking refreshes me, my mind, and keeps my body reasonably fit. So far I have walked three Camino routes and many other long distance hikes in the UK, Canada, and around the rest of Europe. One of the best was my hike up Ben Nevis.