Tomorrow morning (Monday April 13th) I will be up at 6am to head to the bus station in Madrid, Spain for a 4 hour bus ride to León, Spain. I plan to spend the afternoon wandering the streets of León after I check into the Monastery I’ve booked a stay with for the night. (Yes, a monastery. No, I am not becoming a nun.)
I’ve been asked why I am doing El Camino de Santiago and if am completely honest I am not 100% sure of it myself – except that I might be soul searching. Not in the sense that I would be ‘looking for myself”, because I have already found that. It’s more like I’m trying to figure out what I want from life, from my life.
For those who have no idea what ‘El Camino de Santiago’ is, here’s the quickest way to explain…
The Camino de Santiago, of the Way of St. James, is a medieval pilgrimage route which brought pilgrims from all walks of Europe, across Spain to the city of Santiago de Compostela, believed by many to be the final resting place of Saint James (the Greater) the Apostle.
Essentially its a religious walk. Today it’s still known as a religious walk but for many it simply symbolizes a spiritual journey and something to get away from the regular thrill of life and just reflect on it. They say that when you walk el camino you need to think of a question to reflect upon. I haven’t figured out my question yet. Although some never do, they just walk to walk and escape the distractions of life.
The walk begins at the south end of France (Jean Pied de Port) and continues to the very north end of Spain in Santiago de Compostela, spanning a total of about 500 miles (775km / 5 weeks). I am starting in León because I believe in baby steps, haha, I will be walking about 220 miles (355km/ 2-3 weeks). Yup! That is right, by foot for 2-3 weeks with just my backpack, camera, and phone.
I’ve always wanted to do this. When I first heard about El Camino de Santiago, I was living in Sevilla and I was 20 years old. I remember thinking that I will do it one day – and that day is tomorrow!
They say the rule of thumb is to only pack what you NEED, and that happens to be hard for some of us! The thought of leaving my blowdryer (in my case) isn’t easy. But while I was packing I kept thinking, I have to carry all of this on my back…
(That made me think twice about what to bring.)
In my Backpack I have:
3 sets of yoga pants
1 pair of shorts
1 nice t-shirt
1 water bottle
1 set of pjs
3 pairs of socks
1 walking stick
Not too bad right?
I am sure I’ll throw stuff out as the days go by. Also, no makeup, which makes getting up in the morning really easy!
So, am I ready?
I don’t know.
But I do know this…
I am young and I have time now. Not months from now, but NOW! Yes, I am nervous and scared, but I am excited.
Whats that saying? “Usually the things that excite you, are the things you’ll never forget”. (something like that)
If you look at my ‘About Jen’ section you’ll see that at the very bottom of my bio, I wrote about why I wanted to start this blog and why I left home to travel. We only live once, and yes it’s cliche, but it’s the bottom line truth. I don’t know about you guys, but I intend on living to the max.
I leave you all with that! 🙂
Wish me luck! And don’t forget to follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat to find out how ready I really am! Haha