The day has finally arrived. I am off on my pilgrimage tomorrow morning. After all the planning,and booking and training –most of that shared here on my blog –it’s hard to believe that the time has finally arrived. I am as ready as I’ll ever be! My emotions this past week have been on high alert as this day arrives. So many people wishing me safe travels has warmed my heart.
Traditionally,pilgrimages begin from home,but that was in the olden days when all you had at your disposal were your feet and possibly a horse or a donkey. For me,this adventure will begin at home,regardless of the method of transportation. I am leaving my best friend and travel partner behind tomorrow. While he will be coming to Spain,hopefully in time to catch the last part of the Camino,I am starting out alone.
There is a bit of a snowstorm forecast for the morning that could make our journey to the airport a bit challenging. I have a long travel day tomorrow –leaving Pinawa at 7:30 (or earlier if there is snow) and arriving in Madrid at 2:15 the next day. After a couple of nights in Madrid to visit museums and get over jet lag,I will travel by 3 trains to St. Jean Pied de Port,France where I will begin a 790 km walk to Santiago de Compostela. If you would like to see where I am going on Google earth,select this link and click on the 3D button in the left hand pane. Settle back,as it takes even Google about 45 minutes to walk it. I am giving myself approximately 35 days. The Camino on Google Maps
My bag is packed,but probably not ready to go. My Camino Facebook group is all over me that my pack is too heavy. I started at 26 pounds last night and am currently down to 21.6. Ideally I would like to see it under 20 or I feel I will be visiting the post office,as so many pilgrims before me have (apparently). Compared to the 45 lbs I carried on the East Coast Trail in Newfoundland,this feels amazing but we shall see what else I thought was essential last night can me removed.
For those of you that may recall my poll at the outset of this planning about whether or not I should bring my blackberry,well,the resounding votes were for taking it with me. Most of you believed I could not survive without it. I’m ignoring all your well-meaning advice and leaving it behind,but with a compromise. My ipod is coming with me,so I will have communication when I find WiFi,but I will be gloriously disconnected most of the time. The ipod is there so I can find Ray when he gets here and blog along the way.
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adios queridos amigos!