A different kind of trip – The way of St. James

For the last few days, I’ve been anxiously planning an upcoming trip. Not a psychedelic trip this time, but a different kind of trip nonetheless.

I’m planning on walking the Camino de Santiago starting April 5th, an 800 kilometer pilgrimage from the French-Spanish border near the Pyrenees to the town of Santiago de Compostela, where the alleged remains of St. James, an apostle of Jesus Christ, lie.

The walk itself will probably take me around a month to complete, with 20 – 30 km daily. I’ve never walked this far in one stretch in my life, and I’m a bit nervous, but most of all I feel invigorated. Looking forward to a new kind of adventure.

By the way, I’m writing this post on March 13th, but it’ll probably be released in late April, so I’ll be more than half way to Santiago at that point if all goes well.

As I’ve mentioned in several posts already, I’m finally (almost) in full health once again after two years of horrific illness. This pilgrimage will mark a new chapter in my life. I feel like the last few months have been all about getting me back on my feet after a rough tumble, and I’m just on the verge of being able head out into the wide world once more.

I’m going to approach this trip as a pilgrimage as opposed to ‘just a long walk’, in the sense that I want this to be a way to expand my limits, mentally and physically, at the same time as I acknowledge the transience of my existence. Maybe that’s not the traditional meaning of the word, but that’s the meaning I choose to give it in my own mind.

I’ve been working hard at instilling powerful habits in my life these last few months, and I’m going to have to let go of some of them. Out with the old and in with the new as they say. I’m going to keep meditating and affirming, drawing and journaling, but I’ll have to adapt to ever-changing circumstances. Some days will be wet and cold, others warm and dry.

Some days I’ll have a moment to my self, others I’ll be surrounded by people. Some days I’ll be exhausted from walking for miles on end, and others I’ll be full of zest. My plan is to accept all of this and meet these different moments with loving awareness.

Then again, people say this pilgrimage has a way of throwing all plans out the window. So I’ll just go with the flow.

I’ll start off with a short trip to Riga in Latvia with my mother and sister, where we’ll stay for three nights. Then off I go to Albania where I’ll meet up with my lovely SylvĂ­a and we’ll have some fun together in a strange new setting for another two weeks or so. After she flies back to Iceland I’ll head to Bayonne and from there to St. Jean Pied de Port, where I’ll start my walk.

Then when I come back home, I want to write all about it. What I’ve learned, what I loved, and who I met. So stay tuned.

Until next time, much love.

 

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