Camino de Santiago: Postponing My Pilgrimage

I have not yet blogged about the one adventure that I’ve been looking forward to more than any other trip, walking the Camino de Santiago, also known as the Way of St. James. It’s a pilgrimage for which there are many routes through Europe. Ever since I watched the 2011 Emilio Estevez film “The Way” starring Martin Sheen, I was hooked.

martin-sheen-in-the-way-007_orig
Martin Sheen in “The Way”.

My Calling

There are many reasons why I feel a calling to make this pilgrimage. The camino appeals to me by being a retreat for spiritual growth, as portrayed in “The Way”. I’m attracted to the idea of walking through beautiful countryside daily.  The milage and a pack make it physically demanding, but you settle up in the next village and maybe enjoy dinner with fellow pilgrims who are from other parts of Europe or the world. ​

There’s a saying about the Camino. “The first third is for the body, the second third is for the mind, and the last third is for the spirit”.

This quote speaks to adjusting to walking the camino on a daily basis. The experience can be a significant physical adjustment. Not used to walking long distance with a weighted pack, many suffer blisters or other injuries. In fact, the blisters can turn a beautiful experience into a painful nightmare and I’ve read plenty of these accounts. ​

Postponing My Pilgrimage

Chris and I had planned to walk a portion of the French Way this fall, but Chris’s step father was recently diagnosed with advanced-stage cancer.  Instead of flying to Europe, we will be flying to Niagara Falls to visit with him in his final days as well as be there to support his mom. Family is first and foremost the priority.  The Camino is not going anywhere. Chris and I plan to reschedule the pilgrimage for spring 2017 and likely for a longer length of time. ​

More on the Camino

I’ve immersed myself in resources about the Camino from reading books about first-hand experiences to joining the Facebook group American Pilgrims on the Camino. If you’d like to learn more about the Camino experience, I thought this Texan wrote a pretty comprehensive blog.